Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Spring 2017 Magazines
Ages: 9 - 14 yrs.
Newsstand Price: $6.95
Subscription Price: $33.95 / 9 Issues

What's striking about Cobblestone's approach to bringing American history to life for kids is the magazine's consistent classiness. Without ever talking down to its young readers, with its pages tastefully and attractively designed using historic photos and smart illustrations, this astute, glossy magazine manages to make stories from the America's past thoughtful, fascinating and relevant. And it has no ads.

Recent thematic issues focused on the Salem Witches, Alexander Hamilton, the Olympics, and events leading to the U.S. Civil War. Its features go beyond the textbook treatment of history to explore all aspects of historical events.

To understand how deep the magazine ventures into historic episodes, take the September issue that's all about the Salem Witchcraft trials. Broadening the subject, the issue includes a short primer on witches through the centuries leading up to the Salem events; the stressful and life-threatening conditions living in Salem in the 1600s; the odd behavior of the girls who were tried as witches and possible causes; everyday Puritan life in the Massachusetts Bay Colony; a Q & A with an expert on the Salem trials; modern witch hunts; witchy characters in literature and movies; and more.

The October 2016 issue which is all about Alexander Hamilton covers many aspects of his life, from being a military hero and proud family man to becoming America's first Secretary of the Treasury to fighting that infamous and fatal duel with Aaron Burr.

Illustrating how Cobblestone connects past with present, in conjunction with the Hamilton stories, it challenged readers to enter its "Rap Into History" contest (think Broadway's Tony-award-winning musical Hamilton) to create an original rap or song about their favorite figure in U.S. History!

For aspiring young historians, or kids who just love history, this magazine opens doors to understanding the lessons of the past.

Don Oldenburg   ©2017 Parents' Choice
A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of "The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion" (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

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