Whether you want to encourage your child to read, give them a fun quiet-time activity, or help them pursue an interest, children's magazines can be just the ticket. However, buying magazines for your kids can add up quickly, so it can be helpful to know what free options are available. If you're having issues finding these types of publications, we have catalogued the best free kids' magazines to order!
Top Free Kids Magazines for All Ages
There aren't many free magazines for kids, but there are a few standouts that are worth mentioning. Kids love getting mail, so these magazines will bring twice the joy when they arrive and when they're read!
Netflix Family Magazine
Yes, that's right! Our favorite television and movie streaming service also offers Netflix fans a magazine that features "your child’s favorite Netflix Jr. and After School characters." Netflix Family Magazine also has stickers, stories, games, crafts and recipes, coloring pages, and so much more! Best of all, you can subscribe to get the magazine sent to your home or you can download their latest digital copy — both for free!
Kids' Guide to Helping Animals
The Kids' Guide to Helping Animals is a free, one-issue magazine from PETA Kids. It includes information about conservation, buying cruelty-free products, and animal-friendly field trips. Kids who are interested in cooking, nature, and animals will love the free stickers, fun facts, and recipes.
PETA Kids also offers free comic books! All parents need to do is fill out their online form and they will receive their four most popular books — A Dog’s Life, A Cow’s Life, A Rat’s Life, and A Chicken’s Life.
LEGO Life Magazine
Kids who love LEGOs, building, or just like popular shows, movies, and characters that feature these bright blocks will love LEGO Life Magazine. You can sign up online to get five issues per year geared toward kids ages five to nine. Fun features include comic strips with your favorite LEGO characters, games and activities you can complete on the pages, and pictures of cool LEGO creations made by kids from all around the world.
Free Online Children's Magazines
As the world looks to reduce waste and protect the environment, many print magazines are switching to online-only, or digital issues. This means you can find way more free online magazines than print magazines for kids.
Kids Discover Online
Kids Discover Online is an excellent online resource where elementary and middle-school children can learn about all kinds of science and social studies topics, from rivers to butterflies to the American Revolution. The free version gives you access to 30 units with 200 topics or articles. While you won't find all the fun features of their print magazines, Kids Discover Online includes much of the same material as the print magazine articles.
National Geographic Kids
The free online content from National Geographic Kids is extensive. There are educational articles on dozens of countries around the world, animals, and planets, all with fun photos. Aimed at kids ages 6 and older, this magazine is a great option for learning and fun.
Sports Illustrated Kids
If you have children ages 8 to 14 who are sports fans, look no further than the Sports Illustrated for Kids website. Kids can get an analysis of recent games, forecasts about the upcoming season, and fun sports trivia. It's all free, and your son or daughter will love getting caught up on the latest sports news. Check out the Kid Reporter section to find articles about sports written by kids.
The Smithsonian is a network of incredible museums, and they also share knowledge with all ages online. Smithsonian Kids gives your children access to photos from the National Zoo, information about insects, articles about innovation, and much more. With games, activities, quizzes, and articles just like their print magazines, kids will never get bored while perusing Smithsonian Kids!
Ranger Rick Digital Magazines
The Ranger Rick digital magazine collections are great publications that can teach your kids about animals, nature, and dinosaurs. All you do is subscribe online and you can get access to their online articles, games, jokes, and crafts.
Tailored for kids in grades six through 12, Pathways Magazine offers free digital copies of their student magazines that can help to get your kids excited about science! There is no subscription required and the website offers teaching guides, online quizzes, vocabulary lists, and interactive tools to let your kids learn about topics like the brain, regeneration, superbugs, and even basic science careers!
TIME for Kids
Everyone knows the iconic TIME Magazine, but many parents don't realize that they also have free articles online for kids! Kids from kindergarten age all the way up to sixth grade can find different articles about science, animals, current events, history, and the environment. What we like most about TIME for Kids is that it is extremely inclusive -- younger subscribers who haven't mastered their reading skills have the option to listen to audio versions of the articles!
Scholastic Kids Press
If you're interested in your children staying up to date on the latest news in an age-appropriate way, Scholastic Kids Press is a great resource. The online magazine features news for kids, by kids. They have kids ages 10 to 14 from all over the globe writing stories about politics, current events, and the environment in a kid-friendly way.
Girls of all ages who are homeschooled will love the free Back-to-Homeschool back issues online. All the content is written by other homeschool girls and there are about 11 back issues you can read for free online. Features include recipes, games, serial stories, and educational articles. Each issue features 35 to 40 pages filled with fun and learning for girls, by girls.
Animal Wellness Magazine
Older kids ages eight and up who love animals might enjoy a free digital subscription of Animal Wellness Magazine. This free digital subscription will address everything from pet gift ideas, tips from pet experts, and natural pet care information. Child readers can also learn how to train pets and how to keep them healthy. Each issue is full of great information, resources, tips, and adorable animal photos to keep your future veterinarian engaged.
More Places to Find Free Kids' Magazines
Each community has unique organizations and businesses that may offer free magazines to kids. Keep your eyes peeled when you're out in town to see if you can find any in your area or explore the many online resources now available to those with internet access.
- Local library: Libraries often have magazines that can be checked out and then returned or enjoyed on-site. You can also ask your librarian for last year's issues when they are clearing the shelves to make room for this year's issues.
- Family literacy centers: If there is a local family literacy center in your area, you may find that they have free magazines and other no-cost resources for family learning available.
- Magazine swap: You may already have a magazine swap in your area, but if you don't, you can start one! Simply implement a system to trade magazines with other families once your kids are finished with them. This is a definite win-win, as it helps save trees and money.
- The Internet Archive: The Internet Archive is a nonprofit that provides a free digital library to the general public. In their Kid's Magazines section you can access hundreds of out-of-print children's magazine issues like Totally Kids or old issues of popular magazines like National Geographic Kids and Time for Kids.
Have Fun With Free Magazine Subscriptions for Kids
When you have free magazines for kids handy, both in print and online, you can always have a budget-friendly boredom-buster. No-cost magazines allow kids to learn about a huge variety of topics, play games, work puzzles, and connect with the current world. When they're done enjoying the magazine, kids can pass their issues on to other children or use them for arts and crafts projects.