KidLogger and its advantages during the lockdown

Now that lockdowns have been instituted and schools closed, our children have shifted to remote learning. Now it is outright allowed for them to sit at the computer for five or six hours day until their eyes turn red from weariness. Our family decided to set aside a separate room for this learning so that our children would not get distracted. Now we only check in with the kids occasionally to bring them a snack or ask them to take a break or come to lunch.

But how much of that time are they really spending on learning, and how much is needless distraction and entertainment?

Let’s look at what the average high school student is doing. As an example I’ll use what my own son has been up to today.

So, we open the reports generated by Kidlogger, which was installed beforehand on the computer my son is using:

The list of applications launched does not initially raise any concerns. Everything is as it should be: Zoom, Twitch, Viber, a torrent application and the web browser were opened. Zoom they use for teaching, Viber is a messenger, and the browser is for looking up information. But what is this Twitch that we find there?

The web-browsing history helps us answer this question. It turns out that is a game streaming platform. The web-browsing history also shows a great deal of YouTube URLs, and again some more online games.

Let’s move on to the screenshot section. According to the schedule, my son’s classes start at 10:00 a.m., but for some reason a shooter game was open on his computer. This went on until 11:00! I later learned that the first class of the day had been canceled, and so he spent those 45 minutes playing a game fairly.

At 11:00 he finally launches Zoom and begins to use the browser to look up something about literature.

But at 11:37 the shooter game again appears on the screen. His class is over, a break has begun. But instead of getting up, moving around some, and preparing for the next class, he continues to sit at the computer, though he had been there for an hour and a half already!

I study the screenshots more closely, and what do I find? Nonstop gaming on the screen until lunchtime. It turns out that while their teacher is teaching the class and explaining things to them, they are watching streamed games or even playing games themselves in the browser! What can they possibly learn from these classes if their eyes are always somewhere else?

I call out to my son about this, and the games disappear from the screen. Then Notepad opens and it covers Zoom and everything that the teacher is showing the students.

The hardest thing for parents to do at a moment like that, is control their rage. I gently ask my son to close Notepad and pay attention to what his teacher is saying.

Good thing that I decided to check on what my son has been up to during these remote learning hours. Now the most difficult thing awaits: having a talk with him about all this and finding a resolution to this problem. Meanwhile, here is what I have concluded from these observations:

  • Children can get up to all kinds of completely inappropriate things during remote learning;
  • Children might ignore classes entirely;
  • If a child doesn’t have any class for the moment, he or she will play games;
  • Children might dedicate all their breaks between classes to gaming;
  • Even if a children does not play games, he or she might ignore the teacher and the information being relayed, because teachers have no way of making sure that pupils are paying attention.

In my case things could have been worse; my son is maintaining good grades. But it is important not to let the situation get out of hand, and to anticipate any problems early on.

KidLogger for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux lets you determine what your child is really up to during remote learning. Parents will have at their disposals logs and reports about the applications used, websites visited, and text entered, as well as screenshots of what is happening on your child’s screen.

The world is changing, and our job as parents is to do everything we can to ensure our children behave appropriately, learn responsibility, and are not exposed to the harmful effects of the vast online world. For this, it is often enough to simply track their activity on the computer, direct their learning, and help them learn to avoid distractions.

Together we can rise to this challenge!

Here you can find tutorials, articles and announcements about KidLogger SAS: what new features we’ve implemented, how to install Kidlogger, and how to set up user monitoring for different platforms like Windows, Mac, Android, Symbian, BlackBerry and iOS.

We’re happy to hear any suggestions you might have about improving KidLogger.

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