You know the payoff of careful lesson preparation—a successful and satisfying learning experience for your students and you. Even though your days are rushed and the demands on you are great, it’s worth it to take the time to prepare so your lessons go smoothly. This is especially true of lessons that rely on technology. Technology surprises can derail a lesson quickly, so you want to make sure everything’s working the way you want it to before presenting a lesson to your class.
Take PowerPoint lessons, for example. By now, using PowerPoint is probably second nature, but you may not typically use a new PowerPoint lesson you’ve created until you’ve practiced it first.
Practicing multiple-mouse lessons created in Mouse Mischief is just as important—maybe even more so. Mouse Mischief integrates smoothly into PowerPoint, so it’s not difficult to learn. But because Mouse Mischief enables many students to interact with your slides at the same time, it’s always a good idea to practice multiple-mouse lessons you’ve created before playing them for your class. That means running through the regular preparation of running the slideshow and connecting several mice to your computer to make sure that the multiple-mouse slides are working properly and in the way you want them to. Taking the time at home or at school to practice a multiple-mouse lesson might save you some unnecessary confusion in the classroom, and help ensure that your students enjoy this new learning experience and beg you for more clickable lessons.
You can practice clicking through a multiple-mouse lesson on your own computer; it doesn’t take a lot of extra equipment. If you have a desktop computer, connect two wireless or USB mice to it in addition to your own mouse. If there aren’t enough available USB ports, use a USB hub. On a portable computer, such as a notebook computer, it’s even easier. Here’s how to practice lessons on a portable computer using three mice.
- Use the portable computer’s touchpad as the teacher’s mouse.
- Connect two wired or wireless mice to act as student mice. If you use wireless mice, make sure that they have 2.4 GHz receivers.
If you want a wireless mouse that works well with Mouse Mischief, try this one.
After you’ve connected the mice, open your lesson, and then click Play Slide Show on the Multiple-Mouse tab.
Click through all the multiple-mouse slides, just to make sure that the interactive ones will be interesting for your students and teach what you want to teach. If you don’t feel ambidextrous enough to operate mice with both hands, ask a colleague to play the role of one student. They’ll have a good time while they’re helping you!
Practicing a multiple-mouse lesson on your own computer this way has another benefit: it can give you new ideas about how to use the multiple-mouse slides in future lessons. By playing the role of the students, as well as the teacher, you get to feel what it’s like to respond to the questions on the screen, how to improve slides you’ve already created, and what mouse action might be fun to try on the screen.
Find existing demo videos and documentation by visiting the Microsoft Mouse Mischief Help & How-To page.