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Woolly Mammoth In Trouble - Smithsonian’s Prehistoric Pals

October 18, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

The Digital Media Diet

A trip back in time to the ice age ...

Wooly Mammoth in Trouble is a nicely illustrated title in Oceanhouse Media's Smithsonian Collection - a series based on popular non-fiction print titles about the natural world. The print version of this title was released in 2004 along with an audio CD. As a book app, this title sparkles, giving enormous value over its print counterpart, including narrated text that highlights as read. This book series fills a great need for digital book apps with non-fiction educational content. The books selected so far have been well vetted as print titles, making it easy as parents & educators to select these digital books with confidence.

Each title in this series takes the original print images and pans over them in a nice, semi-animated style. There is also a nice array of natural sound effects, like the crunching of snow, waves or wind blowing, paired nicely with a great male voice-over. The sound effects also help the story come alive without overshadowing the narration.

Extra features include the ability to record your own narration as well as excellent navigation with a nice visual thumbnail page guide. Ample settings allow adults to set the book up with or without audio and interactive elements. Links that leave the app are contained exclusively in the 'info' section under a parental gate that requires fluid reading and following complex directions. 

As a way to foster a child's interest in prehistoric animals, this app gets high marks. It is well developed and based on sound scientific information. There are even a few pages at the end with extra educational content. Paired with Oceanhouse Media's "OM" template, these Smithsonian non-fiction titles get a clear educational boost when print goes digital, engaging a whole new generation of young readers!


This app has been thoroughly evaluated by our staff. Please click on the 'star ratings' tab above, to see how it fared in all nine of our rating categories. See synopsis tab for more details about the storyline.

All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.


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Woolly Mammoth In Trouble - Smithsonian’s Prehistoric Pals

October 18, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

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Smithsonian Institution

Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Length (time):
6 - 8 Minutes

Based on non-digital book: Yes

Allows Own Narration:

Uses Motion: No

Age: 6 - 9 +

English •

Length (pages):
24 Pages


Story Synopsis - Woolly Mammoth In Trouble - Smithsonian’s Prehistoric Pals

Travel back to the Ice Age and join Woolly Mammoth in the cold, windy plains of Europe. Explore pictures, learn new vocabulary, and personalize the story with your own narration. As a storm comes and heavy snow falls, Woolly Mammoth becomes lost and caught in the sight of a pack of Saber-Tooth Tigers! Can he find his way out of this trouble and back to his herd? [Source: iTunes]

Our Synopsis: The story begins during the ice age. We follow a wooly mammoth who is well-suited to his cold environment. He has specialized ways to get food just for snowy conditions and needs to eat a lot everyday to survive. The mammoth then gets separated from his herd, after hiding from a storm in a cave. As he looks for his fellow mammoths, he encounters danger. Saber-tooth tigers attack him but he is so much larger than the pride of cats that he gets away unharmed. With his keen eyesight, he sees his herd finally and rejoins them. The herd wanders miles to find food, staying safe by staying together. Several fact pages follow about the wooly mammoth and the era they lived in.


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Orientation: Landscape

Format: Universal


Read to Me, Read Myself, AutoPlay, Record, Page Guide, News On/Off, Sound Effects/Interactions On/Off, Home, Links to: AppStore, FB, Twitter, Email, Web, Privacy Policy

App Release Date:


Size: 15.91 MB

Version: 2.5

Lite Version Available: No



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