There’s a new member of the
KidzMouse computer mouse family: MarinaBug, which comes with a purple head and purple and green stripes along the back.
MarinaBug still functions just like its siblings, CoolBug, MollyMouse and BenjieBee, and, like them, is designed for small hands. Instead of the confusing left/right click functionality that often confuses young children, just put your hand on the back, squeeze the top of the head, eyes, or on the side and it will function just like an “adult” mouse, KidzMouse spokesperson Melissa Stoltz told MacCentral. The mice are roughly half the size of a conventional computer mouse, and feature a rounded shape that better fits growing hands.
KidzMouse makes niche-market computer peripherals. The names Molly and Benjie are those of the grandchildren of KidzMouse inventor, Susan Giles, who is also CEO and founder of the company. Four years ago, Giles found that she was having difficulty teaching her four-year-old granddaughter to use a computer because the mouse was too big.
“Standard mice force children to ‘tap,’ a very difficult motion for children with developing motor skills,” Giles told MacCentral. “Squeezing is a much more natural and comfortable gesture for children, which is why I pursued a prototype that incorporated squeezing. The KidzMouse is a ‘squeezable’ mouse that’s designed for small hands.”
Giles spent three years developing the product, which is now publicly available. All KidzMouse rodents have a suggested retail price of US$19.99 and are currently available from the KidzMouse Web site.
What’s more, KidzMouse has initiated “Little Kidz Click,” a program to benefit inner city schools, computer learning centers, libraries and educational technology training centers throughout the U.S. Already underway via donations of KidzMouse products to schools and learning centers throughout northern California, Little Kidz Click will soon be expanding its efforts to the Boston, New York and Los Angeles city school systems, among others.