Age 3 - “Can I have a go on the phone?”
Not cool with...
Closing games on the iPhone and opening
Knows to turn the phone the right way once
Playing simple games on the phone that
don’t need precise gestures or accuracy like
colouring or pairs games with large target
Clicking links that have pictures he likes after
watching a YouTube video
Understands simple audio instructions and
feedback when he does something right
Learning icons that have sound to navigate
Reading and writing.
Using a mouse and keyboard.
He clicks repetitively sometimes pressing the wrong buttons,
accidental right clicking, inaccurately clicking outside the
browser window, clicking and holding
Getting to the right TV channel
Using the iPhone alone.
Mum & Dad don’t like him walking around with it and he
sometimes needs help.
Finding things to do online.
Parents have to take him to videos or songs Games without
obvious visual and audio cues in menus
Charlie’s 3 and loves arts & crafts, comics and playing with his toys. After breakfast Mum puts CBeebies on the
TV in the front room until it’s time for nursery. He happily sits and watches whatever’s on, even if he’s seen it. He
copies mum using the remote control and can turn the TV on and oﬀ.
Charlie is always using Dad’s iPhone where he has his own folder called‘Charlie’s Games’with a few apps like
Peppa Pig & Crayola that were recommended to dad or found by searching for‘free kids games’. After
downloading, Dad checks games are suitable and often shows Charlie how to play on the ﬁrst go. He hands the
phone to Charlie with the folder open so he can choose what he likes. He enjoys repeating the same things
over and over again never asking or seeking out anything new.
When Dad’s at work Mum sometimes puts the laptop on and they sit together browsing the CBeebies website
to ﬁnd the things he loves to watch or listen to.He leans across and touches the things on the screen he likes
and recognises from TV shows and books. He copies mum using the mouse and presses the keys that mum
points out, sometimes repetitively clicking, or pressing the wrong buttons.
explore or seek
to be instant
visual & audio
cues to guide
Can be left
& points out
brands he’s seen
LeapPad SkyTV DVD Player iPhone
Age 5 - “I love taking pictures!”
Not cool with...
Nintendo DS Family iPad Mum’s iPhone FreeviewTV
Recognising and typing familiar letters and
words, like her name
Remembering TV cues to get to online
content like URLs, but needs help getting
Navigating to websites from browser
favourites or shortcuts set up by her parents
Using two ﬁngers on a laptop touchpad and
can click and scroll pages
Playing linear games on the laptop that use
Touchscreen gestures like tilt, swipe and tap.
Playing two-handed using ﬁngers or thumbs
Anything that needs her to type
Finding her own way out of unfamiliar
menus and screens
Accurately hitting targets ﬁrst time on
Games that rely on her to read text
Games that need combinations controls like
mouse and keyboard
her own or
again or goes for
links to things
she likes the
goes for things
directly in view
help when she
what she likes
Ella’s 5 and has an older brother Ethan who’s 7. They have some freedom to do what they like. Ella loves
watching cartoons on TV. She remembers the number for the TV channel she likes entering this to go directly
there then scrolls up and down through them all using the directional keys until she ﬁnd something she likes.
If she manages to get hold of the family iPad before Ethan she’ll sit on the ﬂoor start up and playTemple Run that
she learnt to startup and play by copying Ethan. They’ll sometimes both sit play games they can do together like
Toca Boca Hair.
They both love taking videos and photos so Mum regularly needs to look through when they’ve gone to bed and
delete things so they don’t run out of space. When Ethan’s hogging the iPad Ella ﬁnds Mum’s iPhone to play
games on her own like Peppa Pig. She looks for her favourite things remembering how to ﬁnd them after being
shown once but regularly gets stuck and needs to ask for help.
She uses the Nintendo DS that used to be Ethan’s but doesn’t like it because it has too many buttons and she can’t
remember what they all do.
stuff related to
Age 7 - “I like the games on the CBBC website.”
Not cool with...
Reading familiar stories, sounding out new
words as well as using punctuation & capitals
Remembering the routes to content through
visual cues like where icons are on a page
Picking out key words in google search and
games rather than reading.
Browsing the app store, but has to ask dad
Exploring websites and apps on her own,
asking for help when she needs it
Using the mouse or trackpad and keyboard
together to play games
Understanding sign in or registering
Reading text when navigating websites and
Using the mouse and keyboard comfortably
together but takes some time to get used to
Fast-paced games, especially on the laptop
Olivia’s 7 and has a little brother George who’s nearly 3. Her favourite things are her dolls and books. She doesn’t
spend much time with technology as her parent’s try to limit her‘screen time’. After school she goes to
beavers, dancing or watches CBBC or Disney channel on the TV in the living room. She likes watching Arthur
and Shaun the Sheep but needs help to get to the iPlayer app on the TV. She thinks it looks too grown up. Once
she’s there she uses the remote control and searches by typing in the ﬁrst couple of letters of the shows she
She used to get up early to watch CBeebies or Disney before school with George. Recently she’s started asking
Dad to use his iPhone instead which she uses to play a few educational games recommended from school that
Dad downloaded and put into a folder called‘Kid’s games’. She also likes watching her favourite books being
read on YouTube app. If she’s naughty she’s banned from using the iPhone but if she’s good Dad will let her have
Her parents sometimes let her use the family laptop to look at things she’s learning about at school and when
allowed she likes going on the internet to play simple games that she’s mastered like Mike the Knight pairs
game on CBeebies and Club Penguin.
for help when
off by anything
that looks too
needs help with
hard to get into
games where she
on visual and
audio cues to
find things Started to use
search for things
Dad’s iPhoneFamily laptopConnectedTV
Age 9 - “I’m obsessed with this
game, all my friends are on it!”
Browse the app store, choosing games based
on screenshots and reviews.
Set up and play online Multiplayer games.
Conﬁdently navigate unfamiliar menu
systems and programme guides
Search and browse for both shows and
channels using TV on demand
Use Google to search for the website or
game he’s looking for
Download lots of free apps, leaves them
unsorted, & only deletes when out of space
Repeat play levels to collect trophies or
achievements, unless he’s really into the game.
Register on websites without a clear beneﬁt.
Remember multiple website login details
easily, gives up easily trying to recover them.
Know the pin for the Tivo so has to ask Mum
Have his own email address so has to use
his Dad’s. He has to ask if he wants a paid app.
to f ind things
signing in if he
sees a benefit
but won’t seek
having lots of
choice of different
games & apps
friends & his
if he hits a
barrier & will
Ben’s 9 and has an older brother Kevin who’s 13. He likes playing computer games and sometimes plays
football with his friends. He’s very conﬁdent using technology and isn’t afraid to explore new things. He’s got an
iPod Touch, but it’s been gathering dust since he’s obsessed with his new Nexus tablet. He spends most of his
time sat on the sofa in the front room with theTV on playing Minecraft. He watches endless Minecraft tutorials
and clips on YouTube and likes to connect to play with it with his friends over the wiﬁ when they come over.
When not on Minecraft he’s either browsing the app store for free apps or ﬂicking between the latest ones he’s
downloaded. He also recently got into playing Call of Duty on the PS3 with Kevin in his room. He’s downloaded
loads of free apps that he ﬂicks between.
He only uses the computer for school projects using google to search for speciﬁc things taking the quickest route.
After ﬁnishing his homework he sometimes goes directly to Friv to play the games he used to love playing that
he can’t get on his tablet.
to the same
game if he feels
& likes getting to
NexusTablet iPodTouch Desktop PC VirginTV PS3
Laptop iPhone Family tablet Sky familyTVNintendoWii FreeviewTV
Download and use a handful of apps
recommended by friends or her sister
Play a few games on her phone she can
easily dip in and out of.
Browse the app store, looking at the top
charts and reviews / ratings
Register for new services using her own
email address if the beneﬁts are clear
Watches on demand TV shows on the laptop
as it has a bigger screen
Play games online that her friends don’t play
anymore like Moshi Monsters and
Arrange speciﬁc times to meet friends online
to play together
Spend as much time as she used to playing
games on the internet
Ask her sister, parents or friends for help if
she gets stuck.
Has her own
to websites for
in touch with
social apps &
Uses a small
Zoe’s just turned 11 and about to start secondary school. She has an older sister who’s 15 called Jess. She likes
swimming, meeting up with friends and watching reality TV like Big Brother but still watches teen dramas like
Tracy Beaker on CBBC. She LOVES the iPhone her parents got her for Christmas, preferring it over the family tablet
because it’s hers.
Only really using apps, she’s meticulously organised them into folders on her phone for quick access, deleting
those she’s not used for a while. Regularly checking Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp, Kik and Snapchat keeping
up with her friends and latest celeb and music gossip as well as searching YouTube for “how to” videos for
diﬀerent hairstyles and make she chooses those to watch that have the highest ratings or views. She has her own
gmail email address and is desperate to get on Facebook but her parents won’t let her yet.
She has her own laptop in her room, using Oﬃce and Chrome for homework, typing in full addresses of the
websites she uses or search in Google - it’s easier to type on the laptop than on her phone. Once the laptop is on
she might check Skype and see if any of her friends are online and then sit back on her bed and watching TV
shows on demand because she only has Freeview on her TV.
Age 11 - “I only download apps my friends have.”