Jogo Circus Animals - Finishing your plate of food is fun!

App review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
Jogo Circus Animals - Finishing your plate of food is fun! App Poster Image
Silly animals delight, but message may not work.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn that eating food is important. The intended message is that kids should finish all the food on their plates. Indeed, kids are rewarded with a silly animal trick when they feed animals all the food, though the clean-your-plate message may not transfer well to kids' own behavior or be welcome in all families. Kids may learn a bit about what different animals like to eat: The seal gets fish, the lion a steak, the monkey some bananas, and so on. Jogo Circus Animals - Finishing your plate of food is fun! is mostly silly fun, though kids may learn something about how eating helps us do tasks, particularly if parents help highlight that message.

Ease of Play

Play involves simply tapping around the screen, though it's not always obvious where and when kids should tap to make something happen.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A few mild, veiled references to smoking or drinking. A lion who plays reggae music smokes a bubble pipe, and there are "wine" bottles in the background of one of the animal's settings.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that in Jogo Circus Animals - Finishing your plate of food is fun! kids feed circus animals and are rewarded when the animals finish all the food on their plates. Kids tap around the screen to see that, at first, the circus animals are too weak to perform their tricks. But, when kids tap to help the animals finish all their food, each animal performs an amazing circus trick. Each animal is modeled on a particular famous singer, which can add a little tongue-in-cheek humor for parents. There's some light potty humor, such as a seal that eats balls and "poops" them out and a mouse that makes a fart noise after eating cheese. Narration is available in many languages including Spanish, German, Russian, Korean, Japanese, and Turkish. A thorough privacy policy is accessible through the iTunes app description but not on the developer's website; it details the kinds of information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

In JOGO CIRCUS ANIMALS - FINISHING YOUR PLATE OF FOOD IS FUN!, eight circus animals are hungry and they can't perform their tricks if the don’t eat, but the animal keeper has fallen asleep. Kids take charge and feed the animals, who get the strength to do their tricks only when they finish all the food on their plates. Each animal is modeled on a famous singer, such as Elvis the Elephant or Michael (Jackson) the Mouse, and music appropriate to the singer's genre accompanies the tricks. Once all animals are fed, the show is on, and the narrator asks kids if they always finish the food on their plates.

Is it any good?

Nice graphics, great music, and silly animal tricks are the highlights in this quick ebook with a somewhat abstract and old-school learning goal. The animal tricks and accompanying music, though short, will make little kids giggle. Parents playing along will get a kick out of the musical superstar impersonations, such as Amy (Winehouse) the Dog or Freddie (Mercury) the giraffe. It may frustrate some kids that it's not always obvious where they should tap to make something happen, though it shouldn’t take long for them to figure things out. Even though the narrator asks kids whether they finish all the food on their plates, kids will need help applying the lesson in real life if parents want them to; however, the message doesn't fit for every family, and it seems a bit outdated in terms of what we know about healthy eating practices.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why the animals need food to perform their tasks. What does food do for our bodies?

  • Establish rules for your family about what and how much kids should eat. In your family, what happens when kids or grown-ups are full before they've finished what they have on their plates? How do you know when you're full?

  • Practice making healthy food choices, and talk about how those choices are good for your bodies and minds.

App details

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