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We love kids magazines and my girls especially love the science magazines.  When our Ranger Rick Jr. subscription ran out, I couldn’t find a good deal, so we bought Zootles instead.   Here are our thoughts on which we like better.




  • About 17 pages
  • Thick pages
  • Sponsored by a letter, color, concept (big/small), number (2 of 4)
  • Bimonthly
  • Age 3-6
  • Animal theme/focus, too
  • $29.95 normal price/yr


Zootles Content


  • Contents reinforce sponsors
  • Small boxes of info–easy to digest
  • Pictures & illustrations
  • Resource corner with more info + additional resources online & activity for older kids (k level)
  • Poems
  • Short story – longer attention span
  • Has audio book version for car
  • Comic on back cover

Ranger Rick Jr


  • 34 pages
  • Pages are thinner
  • Variation of topics within an issue
  • 10 issues
  • Ages 4-7
  • $19.95/yr.


Ranger Rick Jr. Content


  • Photos & illustrations – short bursts of reading
  • Games/puzzles/drawing/mazes/etc
  • Bonnie & Chester rebus story
  • Ricky & pals story – longer attn span
  • Hands on activities, mailed projects/pics from kids
  • Longer feature story
  • Shorter ‘extra’ stories
  • Fun facts about animals (that’s wild!)


Overall, my girls have found Ranger Rick Jr. to be more engaging.   The content was more fun, had more activities & was longer.  Its much harder to find a deal on, but at almost twice as big as Zootles, I would definitely spring for Ranger Rick Jr. at full price.    The other thing I liked about Ranger Rick Jr was that despite the fact its put out by the NWF, there is no garbage content in it (global warming, etc) — it’s really just about animals and nature.

Also, it does say for ages 4-7, but I found that I moved Dagny up to Ranger Rick at age 5 and she’s been pretty happy with that change.  I would call these more toddler/preschool level magazines.

If you watch deal sites like Zulily, Plum District or others, you can often find both at a discount.

What magazines do your kids enjoy?

Jen S.

1 Comment on Zootles Vs. Ranger Rick Jr.

  1. Carol
    24 September 2018 at 3:54 PM (6 years ago)

    Both zootles and Ranger Rick now have 0-3 mags now!


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