EEEEK--A Mouse!

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In this activity, learners explore the concept of how engineering solved the problem of human/computer interface. Learners disassemble a mouse and explore the movement on the X/Y axis that determines mouse positioning. Learners explore design enhancements to the mouse over time, and as a team of "engineers" add further enhancements to current mouse design.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
1 to 2 hours

Estimated Materials Cost:
$10 - $20 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Student Resource Sheets
  • Student Worksheets
  • Roller ball mouse
  • Eyeglass repair kit or mini screwdriver (must be very small gauge)
  • Model construction materials: water based glue, scissors, tape, ruler, paper, toothpicks, straws, spools


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Computing
      • Computer Science
      • Information Technology
    • Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Metallurgy and Materials Engineering
    • Technology
      • Information and Communication
  • Mathematics
    • Geometry
      • Plane Geometry
  • Physical Sciences
    • Electricity and Magnetism
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results
  • The Nature of Technology
    • Technology and Society
      • Impacts of Technology
      • Technology and History
    • The Design Process
      • Research and Development
      • Invention and Innovation
      • Problem Solving
      • Troubleshooting and Maintenance

Informal Categories

  • Computers


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • use mouse
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, IEEE,