Sunday, October 5, 2008

School Bells Part 2

I wrote previously about trying out a school bell program to help us keep on track with our schedule. I mentioned how helpful it was and how much I liked the program. Well, I have an update to that.

We've continued to use a school bell program each school day. I still love it! For the first time, we've been able to stay on track and actually get, not only something done, but a lot done each day. Each day feels successful. There's no more feelings of failure. How can you not love that?

What has changed, though, is the program that we are using. After seeing the price of Timez Chimes, I went looking for an alternative and found School Bells.

School Bells does all of the same things that Timez Chimes does. Once you set it up, it runs in the background so it doesn't take over your computer. However, you do have to leave your computer running (or laptop open) for it to work. You can set it to ring at any time of the day, up to 100 times per day. It comes with several bells, chimes, and gongs. If you don't like the options provided, you can upload wav, mp3, and midi files. You can even use songs and fade it out after a certain amount of time, if you want. While there doesn't seem to be a limit to how many sound files you can have, there is a limit to how many you can use in a day. It appears that you can only use four sounds at a time. It would be nice if this was unlimited so you could use a different sound for each alarm, but oh well. One nice thing about this program is that you can name each alarm. Rather than trying to remember what time 1 and 2 are you can name them "chore time" or "math" or whatever else you want. It's a nice feature missing from the other program. Another nice feature is the clocks shown on the main page. They show the current time and how much time is remaining until the next time rings. This could definitely help when deciding what to do next or when to stop so you don't run the risk of having to stop mid-lesson. There are so many great things about this little program.

The best difference between Timez Chimes and School Bells is the price. While Timez Chimes sells for $160 regular price (or $78 on sale), School Bells is only $19.95 for a personal/homeschool license. There is also a free trial available if you wish to try it for yourself first. Check it out! It's this unorganized mom's new best friend.

**Disclosure: This review was provided of my own free will. I did not receive anything from the publisher, author, or anyone else for the review. I'm just sharing my feelings, opinions, and experiences that are part of our homeschooling experience.

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3 Comments:

sproutingflowers said...

Thank you for this! I kept thinking there *had* to be some sort of bell system to be had somewhere. This sounds exactly like what I want!!

Courtney Martin said...

I would love this! I haven't been able to find it through the link. What are you currently using?

Davisaj32 said...

The link does not work...i've been looking for an actual school bell,but this could work...if the link worked. any suggestions? Google isn't working out so well.