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Computer Basics - The mouse

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Mouse basics

Highlighting the left and right buttons on a mouse

There are lots of different styles of mouse, but most have a left and a right button.

Moving

A hand holding a mouse on a mouse mat

To hold your mouse just rest your hand over it and put your index finger on the left button and your thumb resting on the side. The cable needs to be pointing towards the computer. The mouse needs to always be in contact with a mouse mat, or desk.

Pointing

You use your mouse to move the cursor around the screen.

Cursors

Illustrating the arrow, hand and hourglass cursor

Three different types of cursor

The cursor changes, depending on what you are doing on the computer. As an arrow you use it for moving and selecting things, as a hand for clicking on links when you are on the internet and it becomes an hourglass when you are waiting for the computer to do something.

Clicking

You single click with the left mouse button to select things.

Just quickly left click and then let go of the button.

If you ever accidently click the right mouse button a list of computer commands will appear. To remove the list just move the mouse and single click the left button.

Drag and drop

Drag and drop is when you move something from one place to another.

First select the item with the left mouse button and keep the button pressed down.

Then move the mouse and the item on screen will move with the cursor.

When you have the cursor and item in the position you want, release the left mouse button.

The item will now be dropped into where the cursor is positioned on the screen.

You use drag and drop to move things around your computer, such as files between folders.

Double clicking

You double click with the left mouse button to open things, such as a folder.

You need to double click quickly, think about the 'knock, knock' you do on a door.

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