Fall marks the beginning of a new school year — and some big changes for a publication you’ve come to trust. After more than a decade, Science News for Kids has a new name: Science News for Students. That change reflects our site’s increasing commitment to developing resources that mesh with the curricula and the needs of today’s schools. The website has also undergone a visual transformation as it moves into a shared online space with its parent publication, Science News, and its parent organization, Society for Science & the Public.
What we’ve added: more stories, broader reporting of engineering and tech advances, and expanded coverage of student research. We’re also beefing up materials for teachers. For instance, an increasing share of the stories will be linked to curriculum themes (see our For Educators page) so that teachers can more easily connect current events with subjects being studied in their classrooms (and aid the Common Core requirements). We also have begun running stories aimed specifically at educators. These include tips on how to incorporate research in the classroom (even under-resourced ones), how to spice up classroom discussions based on current events (such as news stories from our online magazine) and how to convey the importance of creativity, the scientific method, and even mistakes in the conduct of science.
Want more kids to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math? Point them to our burgeoning Cool Jobs series. Each of the pieces profiles a trio of researchers representing a breadth of work on a common theme. From forensics, explosions, snakes, dung and cryptography to the role of mathematics in entertainment, each story reinforces the idea that a plethora of fascinating, and perhaps unexpected, careers depend on the STEM fields.
What won’t change: the site’s timeliness, solid science reporting, dramatic visuals, links to related stories or websites and a student-tailored vocabulary (with glossaries at the bottom of each story). Questions to stimulate classroom discussions and a fun wordfind puzzle (to reinforce terms used in the story) still accompany most longer length feature stories. And our popular Cool Jobs series will continue with even more profiles of people in careers that span the STEM spectrum (yes, including math). What also won’t have to change: any hyperlinks you’ve created to SNK stories. These should be automatically redirected to the new site (although please let us know if you experience problems).
Our mission to produce articles about the latest scientific advances for students from middle school on up remains the same. We will continue to cover new developments — usually weeks to months earlier than other publications that are aimed at bringing science to teens. Our stories not only identify who did the work, but also the mechanisms unveiled (where known) and what it all means.
Don’t worry: None of the older stories will be lost. You can still find them by name, by topic or by searching for key words. Also unchanging: Access to all our content remains free of charge.
Our website already averages almost 700,000 page views per month (accessed by readers in more than 190 nations). The new website will offer easier access to Science News magazine and to information about the entire range of education programs run by Society for Science & the Public. These include details on how to participate in the Broadcom MASTERS competition for middle school students as well as the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair and Intel Science Talent Search for high school students.
Have any suggestions for making us even better? Please weigh in by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. (Please put “SNS suggestions” in the subject line.)
And thanks to all of you, our devoted readers, for making this Web publication one of the foremost sites for kids and others about new developments across the breadth of STEM fields. We are committed to helping students get why science is not only important and relevant, but also way cool!
— Janet Raloff, Editor