Current affairs news reporting by kids, for kids

Following a successful first season, Stuff and production company Luke Nola and Friends are launching into season two of KEA Kids News. The 48-episode series is made by kids for kids, aimed at children aged 7-11 years.

Funded by NZ On Air, KEA Kids News aims to get kids involved in news and issues that impact them, in a way that’s safe and trusted. There must be a ‘news’ angle to each story. Stuff’s editorial team – including Janine Fenwick and Carol Hirschfeld – meet regularly to mentor the KEA team and provide editorial direction.

There are two midday video bulletins a week (Wednesdays and Fridays), each with two news stories. Named after the country’s native bird – the curious kea – the series sees young reporters peck through what’s making news, and share their own take on it. Junior reporters help devise story angles, conduct interviews, and then co-edit the seven-minute bulletins.

Some tough issues were tackled in season one with stories covering gun law changes, parenting trans-gender children, great grandparents raising young children from troubled families, and the measles epidemic.

KEA Kids News was the brainchild of experienced children’s television producer, Luke Nola. His production company Luke Nola and Friends was behind the Emmy and BAFTA-nominated Let’s Get Inventin’, and Nanogirl and the Imaginauts.

Stuff Deputy Editor Janine Fenwick says KEA Kids News provides a safe and appropriate way to encourage an early interest in current affairs.

“It’s a credible, reliable and well-produced news show for our tamariki, that’s all about helping them understand what news is and why it’s important. Our aim is to get children involved in news and issues that impact them, learn what trusted news is, and how to differentiate real news from information that might not be trustworthy, balanced or accurate.”

“The kids we worked with in season one were just amazing. What struck me was the creative way they tackled really complex issues – they asked questions adult journalists probably wouldn’t think of. We learnt so much and we’re excited to tackle a new series of fresh, diverse stories this year.”

KEA Kids News is funded by NZ On Air for HEIHEI children’s television and Stuff. For more information or to watch, visit www.stuff.co.nz/KEA.