Scholastic imprint Klutz is re-entering the preschool market with the launch of Klutz Jr. The new brand will focus on book-and-craft kits for kids ages four and up, and will debut in January 2017 with four titles. The core Klutz brand is for kids aged 6-13, with a sweet spot of 8- 10, according to Klutz senior v-p and general manager Stacy Lellos.

Klutz previously was active in the preschool market with its Chicken Socks imprint. “We discontinued Chicken Socks in 2010 because, though the content was terrific, the packaging didn’t best showcase the brand, and the name Chicken Socks didn’t identify the line with Klutz,” Lellos says. “Based on our research and my experience as a mom, I felt strongly that there was an opportunity in this market. Young kids intuitively want to create and play, and we wanted to create a line of products to support that instinct. We think we can bring something special to this market.”

Klutz Jr.’s first list will include My Clay Critters, My Egg Carton Animals, My Twinkly Tiaras, and My Hand Art. Four additional titles will follow in fall 2017, with four more per year thereafter.

Some Klutz Jr. kits, such as My Clay Critters, feature subjects that have worked well for the core Klutz line but are reimagined for younger children with the help of early learning educators, kid testers, and safety experts. Other topics, such as My Egg Carton Animals, are completely new for the preschool set. Each kit includes an age-appropriate idea book with clear instructions, materials and tools to get started, and a handle for little hands.

“Klutz Jr. is very targeted to preschoolers and is developed specifically for that age group,” Lellos stresses.