Dinosaur Train

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Dinosaur Train TV Poster Image
Young dino's travels teach kids about science and diversity.
Parents recommend

Parents say

age 3+
Based on 49 reviews

Kids say

age 3+
Based on 24 reviews

We think this TV show stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational value

The series is rich in scientific content that's just right for preschoolers. The characters incorporate terms like "hypothesis," "herbivore," and "carnivore" into the storylines, illustrating their meanings for kids. Preschoolers learn about the characteristics and lifestyles of different dinosaur species, and the Dinosaur Train's journeys to different periods within the Mesozoic era introduce kids to the concept of a timeline.

Positive messages

Encourages curiosity, learning new things, and solving problems. When the characters meet new dinosaur friends, they enjoy discovering their similarities as well as what unique traits and skills set them apart from one another, reminding kids that being different is OK and that each of us has special talents to share.

Positive role models & representations

All of the adult dinosaurs are patient and caring with the youngsters and encourage them to explore their world to discover the answers to the questions they have about it.

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Consumerism

The show includes some plugs for its Website.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dinosaur Train encourages preschoolers’ curiosity about the world around them as it introduces them to basic scientific principles and several species of prehistoric creatures. Each story exposes kids to science terms like "hypothesis" and "herbivore," illustrating their meanings in kid-friendly ways. In addition to its educational quality, the show also celebrates differences and encourages respect for others, as Buddy’s travels lead him to make many new friends whose lifestyles and appearances are very different from his.

User Reviews

Parent Written byStayatHomeDad June 10, 2011

What happened to "All GODS creatures"/

I love this show and so does my 8month old, as soon as he hears the opening song he turns towards the TV and starts bouncing. However, I noticed this morning th... Continue reading
Parent of a 2 year old Written byjacksmom16 January 8, 2010
I LOVE THIS SHOW... as does my 2 yr old son. I hope they make some DVDs/ toys soon!!!
Teen, 16 years old Written byIamShiny January 25, 2017

RECOMMENDED

This is the best show the human race has seen. Im 16 and it still helps me cope with my depression everyday. Shiny is my role model. If youre in love with this... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byAwesome_O October 10, 2010

Out. Of. Your. Minds.

Has anyone seen the episode 'Dinosaur Poop!' out of the reviewers? That episode would get this rating, however I'd say other episodes are okay bu... Continue reading

What's the story?

DINOSAUR TRAIN centers on a young Tyrannosaurus Rex named Buddy (voiced by Phillip Corlett) and his adoptive Pteranodon family, who live in a giant nest near the sea. Inquisitive Buddy is always on the lookout for adventure, and there’s no shortage of it when he and his siblings Tiny (Claire Corlett), Shiny (Erika-Shaye Gair), and Don board the Dinosaur Train and speed through time to meet other prehistoric creatures. As questions arise, Buddy comes up with theories and eagerly makes discoveries that will solve the scientific riddles he faces. The show also includes live-action segments starring paleontologist Scott Sampson, who chats with kids about science and fun dinosaur facts.

Is it any good?

This delightful series combines typical preschool interests like trains, dinosaurs, and a healthy appetite for adventure -- and the resulting tales feed kids’ vivid imaginations. Through Buddy’s travels within the Mesozoic era, young viewers learn about different species’ lifestyles, diets, and unique characteristics. Kids are also encouraged to think critically about the world around them; comparing dinosaurs’ traits to those of modern animals, for example, and learning to classify different species by size, appearance, and lifestyle habits.

And Dinosaur Train’s value isn’t limited to early paleontology education or its fun take on basic scientific processes. There are also plenty of positive messages about tolerance and respect for differences. Buddy’s adventures introduce him to a range of species with obvious differences, and his curiosity allows him to discover not only the unique traits that separate him from his new friends, but also the basic similarities that make them all alike.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the dinosaurs lived and what we can learn about them in Dinosaur Train. Kids: How was the Earth different during their time? How did different species adapt to their surroundings? What traits differentiated the species?

  • How do scientists work to answer our questions about the past and the future? What tools do they use to uncover and piece together clues? How do modern inventions improve our lives?

  • Kids: What did you learn from this series? What questions do you still have about prehistoric creatures? What other shows have you seen that teach you something about science?

  • How does Dinosaur Train promote curiosity? Why is this an important character strength?

TV details

Character Strengths

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