Find the best for your family

See what's streaming, limit strong violence or language, and find picks your kids will love with Common Sense Media Plus.

Join now

Civilisations AR

App review by
Christy Matte, Common Sense Media
Civilisations AR App Poster Image
Diverse AR collection brings the art museum home.

Parents say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn more about history, culture around the world, and art.

Ease of Play

Generally responsive AR and the ability to turn the AR off. 

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

Several of the statues depict nude figures.

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Civilisations AR is a BBC app designed to pair with their Civilisations series, which covers human art through the ages. As with an art museum, parents can expect some art that depicts nudity (e.g., Rodin's The Kiss), although this collection is largely family friendly. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's it about?

CIVILISATIONS AR is a companion app to the BBC's Civilisations television show. The app includes more than 40 different artifacts from throughout time and around the world. There are sculptures, masks, paintings, and other objects. Kids scan a flat surface to view the artifacts. The menu shows a globe, and each artifact appears on its point of origin as kids scroll through the list of options. When kids make a choice, the artwork shows up in 3D view on the screen. Kids can rotate the object, make it larger or smaller, and search for hot spots that provide cutaways, activities, or more information. There's also an information page that outlines the origins of the object along with other interesting details. Kids can opt out of AR mode, in which case the objects appear in 3D mode on a plain black background. 

Is it any good?

This lovely, info-packed artistic exploration from the BBC does AR the right way. Civilisations AR is a pretty experience that's easy and fun to use. While many AR apps today are clunky, Civilisations AR easily recognizes flat surfaces in all sorts of light. Those who don't want to use it can turn it off, which makes it more accessible to a range of users. The collection of art objects is diverse and interesting, and you can rotate on-screen to explore all sides or zoom in for the detail work. Curious kids will delight in all of the additional information provided, as well as the chance to hunt down hotspots all over each artifact. Overall, Civilisations AR from the BBC is an educational gem.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the different types of art in the collection within Civisations AR. What types of art do you see? How are they different? How are they the same? Which do you prefer?

  • Talk about art through the ages. How are the older pieces of art different than those that are more current? Why would the art we produce change over time?

  • Families can talk about learning with apps. Do you think this is a good app for learning? Why or why not? What can you learn?

  • Explore other free educational apps with your kids. What do they want to investigate? 

App details

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love art and augmented reality

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate