Prepare the laptop for a child

Minor notebooks Although many children born in these years prefer to use smartphones and tablets for every need, some operations can only be carried out from a PC, even better if portable (so that they can change rooms at any time). Unfortunately, Windows is a profoundly different world than Android or iOS and a child could very well install programs without criteria or visit pages he shouldn't see, without forgetting the risk of contracting computer viruses (which completely cancel or block the use of the computer ).
If we are apprehensive parents you will surely enjoy reading our guide on how to make a laptop suitable for children, so you can sleep peacefully even without our direct control (recommended in any case for all children under the age of 10).

How to make a laptop suitable for children

Virtually any laptop with at least 4 GB of RAM can be quickly converted into a laptop suitable for children, we will just have to be careful to configure a few things before handing it over to minors.

Clean system installation

If the laptop has already been used previously by adults or other children or we find useless apps installed on the new notebook (the so-called bloatware), it is advisable to restore Windows 10 and perform a clean installation, so that every trace of the old user is easily deleted. together with any bloatware present.
To quickly restore Windows 10, open the Start menu at the bottom left, select the app Settings and finally let us take the path Update and Security -> Recovery.
Windows restore

In the screen that will appear, press on It begins under the section Reset your PC and follow the onscreen instructions to delete every program and every file on the system. For more details we can read our guide Format and install Windows from scratch to get your PC clean and new.

Create a dedicated user account

After reinstalling the operating system, we need to create a new user with limited powers, so that minor children cannot install programs without consent or install dangerous viruses (particularly if they are under 10 years of age).
To do this we open the app again Settings from the Start menu, we open the menu Account and let's get to the menu Family and other users.
Limited account

In the screen we press the button Add family member and follow the on-screen instructions, choosing an account Member and setting the new account as Son. The same changes can also be made online at family.microsoft.com.

In this way the new child account will be protected by Microsoft parental control, also remotely adjustable (just log in to the site indicated above).
Family Safety

We will thus be able to set a time of use, block inappropriate content, avoid unnecessary expenses (blocking purchases from the Microsoft Store) and limiting the number of programs and apps that can be started or installed.
On the same laptop we can keep our Administrator account (password protected), so that we can physically intervene on the notebook in case of problems.

In this regard, we invite you to read Check how your children use the PC and the internet with Windows Family accounts; if we look for other alternative parental control services to Microsoft, we can also read our guide Parental Controls and Parental Controls on PC and the Internet: 5 Ways to Keep Kids Safe.

NOTE: An important configuration not to be forgotten is that of create a Google account for a child, so that he can have his email checked and use Google services (note however that youtube will not be available and you will only be able to see Youtube Kids videos).

Install remote control program

If we are away from home we can help our minor children in difficulty using remote control programs such as TeamViewer, which can also be installed only in TeamViewer Host (ideal on children's notebooks).
TeamViewer

We install the TeamViewer Host app on the laptop for children to use, then associate it with our TeamViewer account to have automatic control every time the notebook is on and running.
Once the configuration is complete, open another PC or our smartphone, access the TeamViewer app (the classic one), enter the credentials of our account and press on the name of the laptop under control, so that you can always see what the minor is doing with your computer or provide help and support in case of difficulty.

To learn more we can also read our guide Control the PC from another computer or mobile with Teamviewer.

Install the programs and services necessary for the study

Before leaving the laptop in the hands of the children, let's install them all immediately programs and web services that can be useful for studying, especially if remote lessons are held.
Google Meet

A list of programs that can be installed for the study is as follows:

  • Microsoft Office o LibreOffice
  • Skype
  • Microsoft Teams
  • Google Classrooms
  • Google Meet
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • 7-Zip
  • Google Chrome

The programs indicated should be downloaded and installed all, while the various web services will have to be evaluated together with the teacher, who will choose the meeting and videoconferencing platform that best suits the needs (also based on the type of license provided by the school).

Conclusions

With Windows 10 and a few simple steps we will be able to make a laptop suitable for children without fear that they may make trouble, install useless programs or viruses, install only games or ignore homework. The laptop thus created will be very safe to use even in our absence, since we can remotely access the screen at any time and check the situation.

If we want to apply the same type of control also on smartphones or tablets, we invite you to read our guides How to limit the use of smartphones and tablets to minors is Parental control on children's mobile with Google Family Link and similar apps.

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