The Sojourner

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

TOS Review: Lanschool

Lanschool is a classroom management and monitoring software that can be used in the classroom setting, or in the homeschool setting.    When I found out that I would be receiving this software to review, I wasn't sure how I felt about it.  However, when I received it, I was very anxious to find out how it works.  My husband downloaded it and set it up on my computer as Teacher and on the computer on our flat screen TV as Student for our kids to use.  He said it was VERY easy to download and set up!  In times past, he said that programs like this were very difficult to get up and running and had alot of glitches.  However, he was very impressed with the ease with which Lanschool was up and ready to go.

We use the computers very seldom for our homeschooling, but with my kids being teenagers, they like to go on Facebook, iTunes and check their email.  I have a laptop and often sit in the living room, while my kids are in the family room.  With Lanschool, I can monitor their time online very simply and easily from my laptop.  When they are supposed to be writing essays, I can make sure they are not on Facebook.

I was actually able to uncover some activity of which I did not approve by one of my children and able to address an issue I was unaware of because of having Lanschool installed on our computers.  It saves me alot of time and energy having to constantly go into the family room to check on what my children are doing, and even that was insufficient because one of them got quite good at "flipping" the screen so it would look like they were doing what they were supposed to be doing when I came in.  However, with Lanschool, I was able to discover that there was definitely an issue that we needed to deal with and can  block that child from accessing things that are not approved.    

I received Lanschool Home v7.5 and here is what they say about it:

"Parents today are faced with the challenge and opportunity of using technology in the home.  Computers are amazing education and entertainment tools, but they can also be a huge distraction and danger to kids."
"Lanschool Home v7.5 allows parents to easily keep track and restrict what happens on the family computers."

"Lanschool Home v7.5 helps parents:
Monitor real-time thumbnails of monitors of their home computers
Limit distractions such as the Internet, games and instant messaging
Track Internet history
Log every keystroke typed on a computer
Limit computers access by locking out the computer
Provide help through remote control
Chat with family members"

There are so many different ways in which you could utilize this incredible software in your home, especially if your kids do alot of their homeschool work on the computer.  You can even view a YouTube video together on several computers at the same time.  As the Teacher, you can show websites to your students from your computer onto their computer to help them with research online or other homeschooling applications.  Lanschool will make teaching your children HOW to use the computer and Internet for online research and more SO much easier!

For more information, you can take a guided tour and view their brochures at the Lanschool website.  Lanschool Home is only $99, and three years of technical support and three years of major upgrade protection are included.  This will support 3 Student computers, plus the Teacher.  They also have licenses for classroom use - see their website for more details and prices.

Here are the SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS for Lanschool:
LanSchool Home v7.5 supports any combination of computers running Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP-32, Windows Vista-32/64, Windows 7-32/64, Mac OS 10.4 and higher.
The only exception is the LanSchool parent console for the Mac, which will only run on Intel-based Mac hardware running OS 10.5 and higher.
Listed below are the minimum requirements necessary to run LanSchool v7.5 on both the parent and family computers:
166 MHz Intel® Pentium® processor or faster
48 MB for Windows 98 
96 MB for Windows 2000 
128 MB for Windows XP 
256 MB for Windows Vista 
512 MB for Mac OS X
All computers must be configured with TCP/IP 
802.11 wireless is supported

For more reviews, check out the TOS Review Crew blog.

I received this product for free in return for an honest review. I have not received financial reimbursement for my review of Lanschool.

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