Real names, usernames & icons


Now that we most of the navigation icons, the kids were really concerned about how to share their wishlists with other kids.

First we discussed whether or not to use real names. Most of the students understood Internet safety rules, so they quickly agreed that using a real name was a bad idea. We settled on using made-up usernames. Since the app would be used primarily by kids 8 to 14, we decided that the Club Penguin approach (where you assemble a username from a “safe” keyword list) was a bit too restrictive. We also agreed that their should be some parental control features (suggested by more than one of the students), just to keep things extra safe.

Everyone wanted to have a cute icon associated with their username, but we couldn’t decide how to keep that safe. We wanted to avoid kids uploading inappropriate pictures as their icon.

That opened up the flood gate of icon suggestions – Disney characters, video game characters, farm animals, planets, presidents, sea creatures, vehicles, movie characters, robots, food, candy – the list went on and on.

Each student selected a category and volunteered to draw out the icons for their category over the weekend, and submit them at the next class. In the end, here are some of those what we included:


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