Especially for Families

NIE and the Family

Like many parents today, you may often wonder if you could do something at home to reinforce what your child learns in school. Experts agree that children learn best when parents are interested and involved in their education. Many parents have found that reading and looking through the newspaper with their children makes at-home learning both enjoyable and effective. Seeing a parent read the newspaper every day motivates a child to want to do the same -- read and learn.

In An Open Letter to Parents from a Children’s Author, the author states: “I have been asked to give a few tips on parents reading to their children. I do not have any answers that are set in concrete. I can only tell you what goes through my mind. One of the saddest things I hear almost every day is, ‘I don´t have the time to read to my children.’”

NIE´s Programs and Projects

For more than fifteen years, The News-Journal´s Newspaper In Education (NIE) program has invested in education in Volusia and Flagler Counties by helping students master basic skills while discovering their world. The following projects and programs are provided as an education service by The News-Journal:

In cooperation with WCEU CHANNEL 15 and the Volusia and Flagler county schools, The News-Journal NIE program co-sponsors Florida Quest, created locally to generate interest in local history, events, people and wildlife. The program features reading about selected topics and puzzle solving shared in classrooms.

Things they like to do
Timothy, 7, and his father, Mike, a Volusia County Firefighter, cut out from the newspaper things Mike likes to do during Take Your Dad to School Day at Hurst Elementary, September 25, 2001. After clipping out photos of activities Mike likes to do, the father son pair glued them on a paper t-shirt for display. (Photo: News-Journal/Joanna Kaney)

In cooperation with the Volusia County Reading Council, the NIE program sponsors the Bright Ideas Contest to solicit from teachers best practices using the newspaper. Elementary, middle, high school and exceptional education teachers annually enter the contest. Winning teachers receive classroom subscriptions to The News-Journal and a year´s membership in the Reading Council.

Each Monday The News-Journal publishes Betty Debnam´s syndicated feature, The Mini Page - a full page of activities and information revolving around a theme of interest to students. Parents, teachers and students use The Mini Page as an integral part of student learning activities. The Media Magic Treasure Hunt appears every other week on The Mini-Page in The News-Journal. Media specialists and classroom teachers, as well as parents, encourage students to locate articles or ads which solve the problem.

Every other week a local contest, the Mini-Math Mystery, appears on The Mini-Page in The News-Journal, featuring a challenging math problem. Students and their families work together to find the solutions. The names of the first ten respondents with correct answers are published.

If your family surfs the World Wide Web, there´s nothing better than the advice of other families to guide you - here are some good sites.

Encourage your child to read every day! Visit our Newspaper Tips to get ideas for helping your elementary school child as well as more experienced readers.

If your children see you read the newspaper and talk about what you are reading, they will want to do likewise. Talk with them about what they read in the newspaper and see on TV. For more information about the newspaper and activites view our Family Activities page.

Our bibliography lists books contain newspaper-related themes. The level is given only as a general reference and does not indicate the only level at which that book may be used effectively.

Family Web Sites

Whether you're a parent, guardian, grandparent, or an older sibling, you can help a child learn to love reading! Check out the link below, where you'll find many resources to help you motivate your children from preschool throughout their school years.

Children become readers when their parents read to them. It really is as simple as that. And here's the good news: It's easy to do and it's great fun. With a little practice you will be making the memories of a lifetime, memories both you and your child will cherish. It’s best to read to your child early and often. But it's never too late to begin. Start today.

It's the perfect time to plan some fun reading activities. Here are some activities to do with your kids, that will show them how special reading is and how much fun it can be!

At, you’ll find all sorts of things to do. Start with the news, take a math challenge, play games and more. There’s even a special section for parents.

Keep your kids occupied with a great book — or a few! Our suggestions should keep them busy all year long. These titles will encourage your kids to love reading, while improving their language arts skills.

Fifteen-Minute Reading Activities: Make 15 minutes go a long way. Try these quick reading activities with your younger kids.
Extend your child’s learning using the Reading Rainbow series from PBS, along with these related activities.

Get your kids wild about reading at this companion website to the PBS series, “Between the Lions.”

Find word games and puzzles galore that can help your child become a better reader.