UX for KidsThis event took place on the 10 March at Bar Du Vin
This event will attempt to give a broad overview of the challenges and rewards when designing for children.
It's easy to lump "kids" under one banner, but developmentally and in cognitive terms they're very different as toddlers than they are as a five year olds and again as eight year olds.
Thinking of coming? If you're a designer, UX-person, copy-writer, web or mobile app-developer, a product-owner or anyone who's interested in creating digital products for children, then you should definitely come!
We'll look at involving children in the design process, how we can engage pre-school children, what techniques we should use when we need to address children of differing abilities and how we can build low-fidelity prototypes to quickly address design issues.
Designing Playful Interfaces for Children
As lead designer across the popular CBeebies Playtime, CBeebies Storytime and CBBC Go apps, Leanne is going to talk about some of the processes she used, share tips and techniques on idea generation and how to involve young audiences to help create playful interfaces.
Leanne Dougan - Senior User Experience Designer, BBC, Future Media - CBeebies and CBBC at BBC
Leanne Dougan is acting Creative Director for BBC Content Discovery. Leanne has worked at the BBC almost 8 years and during that time has worked across products such as iPlayer, The Red Button and BBC Children's where she was design lead across apps, sites and games across CBeebies and CBBC.
Design Sprint Methodology – A learning curve
Looking at how the BBC have started to adopt the lean design sprint methodology as pioneered by Google ventures, to allow them to work fast and swarm around a design problem.
The challenge is working collaboratively in a multi-discpinarly environment, to make decisions fast and even put code live. For an organisation that moves quite slowly, it's a new way to work and a steep learning curve for all involved!
Liz will talk about how the sprints gave us chance to explore how we could use the home pages for CBBC and CBeebies based around 4 emergent themes; Social, Content Discovery, Mobile First and Reflecting the Channels.
Liz Leakey - Creative Director, User Experience & Design at BBC Future Media
Liz Leakey is Creative Director for BBC Children's and has worked at the BBC since Jan 2012. Before that she ran her own web design business in the Lake District, after 7 years at the BBC in London, also in BBC Children's. During that time Liz designed sites for brands like Blue Peter and Live & Kicking (sat morning TV) as well as seeing the launch of the two digital channels (CBBC and CBeebies) in 2002. In 2012 she joined the iWonder team in MediaCityUK and worked on the new Guide format for iWonder, before joining BBC Children's in 2014. The world of designing for children has changed in 15 years, although the fundamentals have stayed the same, the processes we use and devices the audience access content on have changed the way we work beyond recognition.
How to involve children in the design process
This talk will examine the different techniques used while working with children as design partners in the design of technology. Dressing up, mixing ideas, Playmobil and Lego are great tools for generating new design ideas. Colouring pens, stickers and cardboard mockups of devices are great tools to create low-fidelity prototypes.
Monica Ferraro - User Experience Consultant, Webcredible and Playhows. UXPA Secretary.
At Playhows, Monica is a user experience consultant specialising in children. Playhows help companies create better experiences for products and services through a children-centred design approach. Their work focuses on involving children directly in the design process, giving their needs and requirements extensive consideration at every stage of the process.
Little users: UX considerations for pre-school children
UX specialists Filip Healy, Mansha Manohar and George Green from Aberlight plus Gemma Newell from the BBC, will discuss some of the challenges of conducting user research with children under 4 and some of the design opportunities and principles that are important for this audience. In particular touchscreens have really lowered the entry level language and motor control skills required to interact with computer programs. On the one hand this provides great opportunities in early education and for busy parents to keep their children engaged, but on the other it raises some very serious ethical questions about what is an acceptable age to start encouraging children to interact with devices.
Amberlight have been involved in numerous projects researching how children and families use technology. They have worked for companies such as BBC, Disney, Sony Playstation, Children's Society, Orange and Microsoft across a range of technologies from websites to games consoles. They have worked closely with schools, parents and academics to train their consultants and tailor their methods for working with children of all ages.