Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Ansel and Clair: Jurassic Dinosaurs

Ansel and Clair: Jurassic Dinosaurs

Spring 2013 Mobile Apps
Ages: 4 - 9 yrs.
Developer: Cognitive Kid
Download Price: $1.99
Platform: iPad2

Ansel & Clair: Jurassic Dinoaurs is a dinosaur discovery game where players recover dinosaur fossils to earn a trip to the Jurassic period. There they learn about a group of dinosaurs and can take photos to keep a record of their adventures. Puzzle games and mix-and-match dinosaur fabrication are part of the fun, too.

Following their adventure with Cretaceous period dinosaurs, Ansel and Clair visit Dr. Lindy Bones, a paleontologist at his fossil dig. They come equipped with Marley a flying vehicle and a pack full of tools for their investigations. Inside the backpack are a camera and scrapbook for storing the photographs they take on their adventures learning about dinosaurs. The three parts of this game are the paleontologist’s camp site and dig area below, a large panorama of a variety of dinosaurs that lived during the Jurassic period and a mix and match dino building page.

When Ansel and Clair arrive at Dr. Bones’ campsite, they ask if they can borrow a fossil. Dr. Bones replies that they can, if they find one. That prompts them to descend in the elevator to the right of his tent into the dig zone. There they can select a dinosaur to dig up. Children reveal the bones by tapping with two kinds of tools and finally using a brush. Although this is a greatly simplified representation of the process, it does demonstrate the series of digging tools and actions that are required to release fossilized bones from rock.

When bones have been recovered, Clair, Ansel, and the dinosaur bones hop on Marley their flying machine and travel back to the Jurassic period. A large panorama displays a number of dinosaurs. Prompts to click the dinosaurs get Clair and Ansel to provide information about each creature. The camera lets players take a photo that is then put into the scrapbook. Up to four individual players can log into the game, so photographs and other data is kept regarding each player.

This is a rather deep game that will educate and entertain with informative narration and bright, detailed illustrations. Information and prompts are provided along the way to help children navigate game options and understand the objectives.

Kristin Harris   ©2013 Parents' Choice
Kristin Reiber Harris is an artist, animator and educator who has created over 50 short form animations with a focus on educational media for young children. Her work has been broadcast on HBO Family and screened in numerous film festivals around the country. She is currently developing interactive media introducing young children to great works of art through stories. Kristin writes about her interests in kids, art and technology at

Look for this product at:
Cognitive Kid, Inc.
Available on iTunes

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