With practice, a preschooler can become a whiz with a mouse.

How to Teach Mouse Control to Preschoolers

by Kathryn Hatter

Computer skills are a must for today’s kids, and this learning starts young. As you introduce a preschooler to a computer, one of the first hurdles will be learning how to control the mouse. This can be a challenge for tiny hands, but with patience and encouragement, your little one will eventually learn how to move a mouse like a pro. Soon enough he’ll be the one you call for computer tips.

1 Invest in a child-sized mouse if you want to make mouse control easier for your tot. These computer peripherals are downsized for little hands, making the buttons easier to maneuver.

2 Sit with your little one at the computer to demonstrate how the mouse works. Point out the cursor on the desktop. While your preschooler watches the cursor, move it slowly with the mouse. Show your child the connection between moving the mouse and the cursor moving.

3 Encourage your kid to take the mouse out for a spin. As your child moves the mouse, don’t be surprised if she has trouble watching the monitor and moving the mouse at the same time, warns the Nick Jr. website. This process is called collocating and a preschooler may not have the brain development necessary for eyes and hands to do different tasks at the same time. She may need to watch her hand move the mouse and then look at the monitor to see where the cursor moved.

4 Show your little one the mouse buttons and talk about clicking the mouse to make things happen. Talk about how he can choose and select things by clicking the mouse. Invite him to try clicking the button so he sees what to do.

5 Point to a spot on the screen with your finger and encourage your preschooler to move the cursor to your finger with the mouse. Be patient while she tries to work the mouse to get the cursor over to your finger. Give lots of encouragement and get excited when she succeeds. If she needs help getting the cursor there, give her a little assistance.

6 Keep practicing with your little one so he learns how to operate the mouse. With time and effort, he’ll soon be a proficient computer whiz.

Items you will need

  • Child-sized mouse (optional)

Tips

  • Use children’s computer games to make learning mouse control fun. Many games have fun graphics, designs and activities for little people to help them enjoy the learning process.
  • The Edutaining Kids website advises parents to adjust the mouse speed within the settings of your computer.

About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.

Photo Credits

  • Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images