Computer Mice

There is a different type of mouse in my classroom. Fortunately is does not need any special care . It is a trackball or marble mouse for the computer. I discovered these critters after looking for computer mice that would be easier for children to use. After trying several brands and sizes, Logitech seems to have the most reliable mouse for the money.

marble mouse

Stickers help remind my class which is the left and right click. Green is for go and orange for caution. I cannot tell them to never use the right click because some programs will tell them to right click.

My students can use right hand, left hand or both hands when maneuvering the mouse. There is no need for mouse pads or cleaning the bottom of the mouse. It is stationary. The children seem to adjust quickly to this different mouse. It is easier for small hands to handle and also takes the pressure off or the wrist and shoulder. This will help delay any carpal tunnel syndrome that is associated with the use of a traditional mouse over the years.

Some people shy away from track balls, because they say they are too hard to use or not precise enough, but after having elbow and shoulder pain at the end of a work day, I decided to give one a try at home. I didn’t find this to be the case with the marble mouse. It seemed a little awkward initially, but within a few days I was able to tasks at the same speed I could with a mouse.

Try one for a few weeks, you might be saving yourself some pain later!

Pack a Healthy Lunch!

With summer coming to an end, school clothes and supplies are on everyone’s mind. Stores know this and are ready with weeks of pre-sales and sales to catch the parent’s eye. There is one form of advertisement that is aimed directly at the child: all the faddish and cool items that could go into a lunch box. Many preschools allow students to bring their home packed lunches. Care should be taken to stay away from all the prefab foods that are loaded with salts and sugars. What will be in your child’s lunch box the first week of school? The basic formula for a preschool lunch contains:

½ cup of juice or milk
½ cup of fruit
½ cup of a vegetable
½ cup of dairy
1 Oz protein
2 Oz grain

Preschool Lunchbox

-Extra water is a must in schools where children cannot freely get drinks of water.
-Days when you send milk, yogurt or cheese are not needed.
-Days when you send juice, a fruit is not needed.
-Watch even “good for you” types of food for added salts, sugars and artificial sweeteners.
-Be conscience of foods that have packages which read low-fat, fruit, veggie, or sugar (sodium) free. They may have ingredients that are less than healthy and contain little fruit or vegetable.
-Never send a food that the child will not eat at home.
-Never send soda or other 12 Oz canned drinks.
-Never send more that one serving of cookies or other “sometimes” foods.

Take the time to do a few practice lunches at home. Maybe you can pack a lunch and go to a park or the beach. Watch your child handle the items you pack. Are the containers easy to open? Is all of the food consumed? Can the child save the cookie until after other foods are eaten? Discuss the importance of the foods that are packed in a daily lunch with your child. Certainly ask the child for suggestions and note likes and dislikes. A pleasant lunch experience will help your child, classmates, and the teacher have a better school afternoon!