iPad Screenshot 3

What we love…

bright cheerful graphics and our friend Curious George bringing us on a science and math inspired adventure which requires problem solving and self regulation.

What we’d love to see…

the entire app included in the purchase price, ability to make it easier or harder depending on the age of the child


Great app featuring Curious George and working on STEM based activities.  This app includes IAP for additional worlds within it which isn’t clearly noted in the app description.

Our Rating

Curious George Train Adventures by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is a universal app for iOS featuring Curious George on a train as he travels through a variety of different scenes.    The app works on fine motor, creative thinking to solve obstacles and puzzles as well as working memory and understanding the speed of the train.  As you go through the game, you control the speed of the train by using a lever at the bottom of the screen which ranges from 0 (stop) to green (fast).  Obstacles appear in the game including ones you can touch away, boards that you have to climb up with the train as well as making a bridge come up or avoiding falling into a hole.  Concepts practiced here included increasing and decreasing speed, opening gates, navigating obstacles like flowers and pineapples as well as raising bridges.  As you complete the level you are star rated based on how many objects remained in your train during the journey – if you go to fast over an obstacle you can lose objects and have to redo the level in order to unlock the next level of the app.  This app includes IAP for additional worlds within it which isn’t clearly noted in the app description.

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I liked the graphics in the app as well as the fact that you had to control the speed with your finger at all times.  This encouraged my son to regulate the speed and he would look forward to see that a warning sign was coming up and he would anticipate that he would need to slow down the train in order to continue on.      This encouraged him to be observant so that he didn’t have to redo the levels over and over again.  I also liked that the obstacles got progressively harder with each level – pulley’s and cranks made it interesting for my son as he asked me questions about how they worked and it became a discussion point as we tested them out.  What happens if you go on the bridge without turning the crank.

In terms of improvements, I would suggest the entire app be available with the purchase of it.  It was a bit disappointing to my kids to learn that if they wanted to try another one of the worlds it remained locked unless we purchased the IAP.  Other improvements could include an age toggle so that the app could be made a bit easier for younger kids – the demographic of Curious George is preschool but some of the activities in here were aimed at elementary aged children which could lead to frustration.  I also found that the narration in the app was a bit echoed – and sometimes the Man with the Yellow Hat’s mouth moved but his voice was not in sync.  I’d also like to see colors and shapes included in the app – perhaps this could be something in a future addition – you could puzzle in the shapes to complete the bridge.

The app does include in app purchases to purchase additional worlds within in but it is protected with a parental gate.  The additional words are  Frosty Wonderland, Zany Meadows and Space Spectacular. Each world has 10 levels and can be purchased for $1.99.  The additional worlds have similar concepts but just different backgrounds.

Overall, this is a fun app for preschool through early elementary aged children that has some great skill building in it. I liked the puzzle solving portion of it the most as well as the regulation of the train which encouraged kids that it wasn’t always about getting there the fastest – something that I try to teach my kids on a regular basis.

Curious George Train Adventures
Curious George Train Adventures
by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Category: Education, Family, Games
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76, iPhoneXS-iPhoneXS, iPhoneXSMax-iPhoneXSMax, iPhoneXR-iPhoneXR, iPad812-iPad812, iPad834-iPad834, iPad856-iPad856, iPad878-iPad878
Size: 194.87 MB


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Screenshots for iPad
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NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.