Young readers in northern Nunavut are testing out a new children's magazine — published in both Inuktitut and English — that organizers hope will get more elementary school students hooked on reading.
In June, the Nunavut Bilingual Education Society and the Qikiqtani Inuit Association released 100 pilot copies of Kaakuluk magazine to children in the territory's Qikiqtaaluk region.
"They ran and they lined up and they were all reaching out and grabbing copies," Becky Kilabuk, the Qikiqtani association youth programs co-ordinator, told CBC News.
"I didn't expect that. They were all over me."
Kaakuluk is a colourful, glossy magazine with English-language stories on one side and Inuktitut stories on the flip side. Kilabuk said the magazine offers something for all young Nunavummiut, and she expects kids to be fascinated when the magazine is fully launched in September.
"I'd definitely love to see more material like this," Kilabuk said. "I think it does get people to read because you see that it's from Nunavut, it's about Nunavut, it's about Inuit, and you want to read it."
The Nunavut Bilingual Education Society assembled the contributions, edited and laid out Kaakuluk. Society president Neil Christopher said 2,500 copies will be going to elementary schools in the Baffin region,which will bea big help to teachers and students.
"I hope it's going to be kind of an exciting and fun way to get students reading, to get them reading at home," said Christopher, who added that his group is also working on a teen magazine called Pivuut. It will launch officially at the same time as Kaakuluk.
With any luck, Christopher said, the magazines' circulation will expand to other school districts in Nunavut.