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Re: dinotopia is just tv

    I agree.  Here at Philly's ANS museum, as with everywhere else,  the
kid's primary questions are based on the "education" they pick up from the
latest dino-flick on TV and movies.  I love watching all this stuff myself!
But they rarely differentiate between the scientific fact on the Discovery
channel and a dino story/fiction/fantasy offered through Disney/Jurassic
Park or other studios.
    I am often subject to an enthusiastic kid exclaiming that Spinosaurus
can whup T-rex's butt any day and that Velociraptors are 7 feet tall.  The
trick is to explain that these are interesting exaggerations, but based on
the present fossil evidence, this is not true but maybe this information may
change in the future.  And the trick is to do this without dampening their
enthusiasm for the field.  I can't wait to see reactions when the feathered
dinos recreations are more in evidence.  It goes on, but all this stuff does
fire up the imagination!
    (two more cents)
    Patti Kane-Vanni

From: "Jenny Lando" <jenny@amnh.org>
To: <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Monday, May 13, 2002 9:46 AM
Subject: dinotopia is just tv

> >From an educator's point of view.....
> My biggest concern when any new dinosaur related movie/tv show comes out
> to prepare myself for the flood of questions I will receive the weeks
> following.....
> And so it's my homework to watch the new show.
> We should probably remember that the original - the books - are wonderful
> and obviously a work of fiction, but also a great series for those middle
> readers who still enjoy visuals with text (and also great for the kids
> inside all of us).
> The TV series - which makes it free and accessible to the public - unlike
> other movies......  is also that.  An interpretation of fiction.
> We all get too worked up about scientific accuracy.  This is a Disney
> production for children - something fun and exciting for them to watch.
> And yes, there will be some merchandising around it.  But it will not
> confuse the children as being scientifically correct.  They will not start
> capturing mosquitoes hoping to clone a T. rex, instead, they will realize
> they are watching a STORY.  One person's idea of what would happen in a
> human & dinosaur society.
> And if you are looking for any accuracy in the piece... it would have to
> the statement that the "carnivores are not evil, they are just hungry by
> nature."
> My two cents   (gosh, these must be adding up)
> : ) Jenny
> Jenny Lando
> Assistant Coordinator/Paleontology of Dinosaurs
> Moveable Museum
> Education Department:AMNH
> Central Park West @ 79th Street
> NYC NY 10024
> 212-769-5189
> 212-769-5329 (fax)