The Straits Times' award-winning publication for secondary school students, IN, is now available as an app.
The new development was announced at an invitation-only event for teachers yesterday.
And, for the first time, it is available to individual existing ST subscribers. Previously, its print edition was available only to schools by bulk subscription.
Ms Serene Luo, editor of IN and its sister publication for primary schools, Little Red Dot, said the app and individual subscription model were developed in response to overwhelming demand from readers.
Said Ms Luo: "The young person today is more comfortable on his mobile device than any other media, and we want to reach them on their turf.
"That way, we can help him learn more about the world and the issues that matter today, and ensure the quality of the news he is reading."
The weekly publication promotes the learning of English and critical literacy through local and global news explained in context, articles about youth interests, causes, culture and careers, as well as English and Character and Citizenship Education lesson activities that students can attempt.
Ms Fiona Chan, The Straits Times managing editor who oversees the ST Schools department, said the IN app was just one of a series of new educational tools being developed by The Straits Times and ST Schools to enhance their offerings for both students and educators.
The 19 teachers from 13 schools learnt about and also tried out first-hand the features of the new app. Among the features:
• Offline access to issues: Readers can download entire issues and store them on their phones to read offline, minimising data usage.
• Relevant links: Stories include links to videos and interactive graphics from The Straits Times, other Singapore Press Holdings' news sites and relevant third-party sources.
• Saving individual stories: Users can easily store stories they want to refer to again in a folder called "My Clippings".
The app also houses additional resources for subscribing schools' educators to support their use of digital IN in the classroom.
The app, which is being tried out at five pilot schools, has helped Pasir Ris Secondary School teacher Mavis Ho, 27, in teaching English
She shared with other attendees her experience using the app to assign reading pages and getting students to reflect on the issues covered, saying: "There are many things you can do using the news articles, using the app."
Ms Ho said she also liked being able to access past issues of IN, especially themed issues that focused on the environment or history, which could further be used in the teaching of other subjects such as science and history.
Kuo Chuan Presbyterian Secondary School teacher Tay Tze Guan, in his 40s, said that the app was user-friendly, adding that it would be a natural fit for students who are digital natives.
The app is available for both iOS and Android.
• For this month only, individual ST subscribers who sign up for the IN digital edition will get an 18 per cent discount off the retail price. They will pay $33.30 for a year's subscription of 37 issues, instead of the normal retail price of $40.70. School packages start at $13.20 for 12 issues.
• Interested schools can e-mail Mr David Tan at firstname.lastname@example.org Interested individual subscribers can e-mail email@example.com. More information about ST Schools and its offerings at www.straitstimes.com/STSchools