happens most every school day - an energetic group of youngsters
the classroom to begin another day of studies. After the
math lesson, they are given an assignment and asked to work quietly for
a few minutes. But at the back of the class, two talkative
have other ideas and seem more interested in discussing their plans for
recess. The yakking spreads when others join the chatter
the noise level increases, so does the teacher's frustration
Continual pleas for quiet are met only for the moment as the babble
begins anew and the cycle repeats.
worse than the noisy classroom is the clamor that occurs each day at
Cafeteria gab is arguably the most difficult to control. Students
use this time not only for eating, but to release some pent-up
While most educators can tolerate some talking during lunch periods,
is that students' voice levels seem to grow exponentially within a
time after sitting down to eat.
gab is arguably the most difficult to control.
the problem is not confined to schools - it is also prevalent in
auditoriums, play areas, and even in the home. In fact, a large
of parents suffer similar frustrations when it comes to uncontrolled
by their own children.
Help has arrived...
what can be done?", you ask. Teachers and parents take
There is an available software product that can help you win the battle
of babble. The GabStopper
was initially released in 2004 and has been since re-introduced in 2007
with some new features. In early 2010, a new version was released
with additional features and enhanced graphics. Since its
inception, the application has received some glowing
reviews from educators.
audio monitoring and control aid, the GabStopper
is a software tool designed to help young ones (and adults too) keep
voices down in the classroom, library, home, or any venue where noise
be a problem. Using brightly colored graphics, the GabStopper
provides easy feedback in the form of a standard traffic light.
indicates acceptable noise levels. Yellow means warning and
increasing noise levels. Red means alert and indicates sound
are unacceptable. Optional .wav sounds can be played on the
when warning or alert levels are reached.
brightly colored graphics, the GabStopper provides easy feedback in the
form of a standard traffic light.
provides functions and features similar to expensive electronic
These devices also monitor noise levels, but are somewhat limited in
ability and are generally unable to filter incidental noises such as
or book-drops. To use the GabStopper,
all you need is an available PC or laptop with sound card and a
available only for the Windows platform, the software should be
available for the Mac as well. A screen-shot from the GabStopper
is shown below:
of the handy features of the GabStopper
is the score bar which can be used as a reward incentive. When
levels are kept in the "green zone", the score gradually
If voice levels increase and approach the yellow or red zones, the
decreases. The GabStopper
is most effective when used as a reward mechanism rather than a means
GabStopper is most effective when used as a reward mechanism rather
a means of punishment.
do users of the GabStopper
say about the product? Instructional technologist Jennifer H.
"The GabStopper saves me instructional time because the students
to the computer lab quiet and ready to work."
language teacher Rob N. says, "By telling my students if they get a
good score they can earn rewards (such as a classroom party every 2
then the students take it upon themselves to tell each other to stop
Peer pressure (combined with GabStopper) can be a wonderful thing."
in the classroom has been a problem for a long time. But there is
help available in the form of a modestly priced software package called
used properly, teachers and parents alike will see immediate results.
more information about the GabStopper
including how to download a free demonstration copy, visit the web-site: