Free computer Tutorials



This lesson is part of an ongoing tutorial. Click here for the first part: How to create a Table

How to Use the Table Toolbar in Microsoft Word

In this lesson, we're going to be using the Table Toolbar. We'll use it to contruct the following Table:

The table you will design

Let's make a start.

There are two ways to bring up the table toolbar. Either click on Table from the menu bar, then click Draw Table from the drop down menu, or click on View from the menu bar, then click Toolbars > Tables and Borders from the drop down menu.

Whichever method you use, you'll get this toolbar popping up:

The Table Toolbar

Once you have the above toolbar displayed, click the icon in the bottom left of the toolbar, the Insert Table icon:

Click Insert Table

  • The Insert Table dialogue box appears (you used this in the first lesson)
  • Change the Number of columns to 7
  • Change the Number of Rows to 8
  • Click the OK button
  • Your table should look like the one below

A table with 7 Columns and 8 Rows

Except there's one slight problem: there's not enough rows for the Nationalities. We need an extra row. To insert another row, do the following:

  • On the Table toolbar, click the Insert Table icon again
  • But this time, click the little black down-pointing arrow just to the right of the icon
  • If you get the Insert Table dialogue box popping up, click the cancel button because you got it wrong
  • When the black arrow is clicked, you should get the drop down list, as in the picture below:

Select Insert Rows Below

  • From the drop down list, click Insert Rows Below
  • A new row is inserted into your table
  • You now have 9 rows

Once you have added a new Row, type the following into the first Row:

Castle, River, Town Hall, Woods, Museum, Gardens,

Type in the following for the left hand column

French, Americans, Welsh, Scots, Irish, Germans, Japanese, Others

When you have finished, your table may look like this one:

The Columns need widening

As you can see in the image, the Town Hall column is too narrow, as is the first column, with the "s" of Americans on a new line. We want to stretch them out a bit so that the words fit on the same line.

To adjust the width of your columns, do the following

  • Highlight the Town Hall column
  • From the menu bar (not the toolbar), click on Table. From the drop down list click on Table Properties. (Or right click on your table and select Table Properties from the popup menu)
  • The Table Properties dialogue box appears
  • Make sure the Column tab strip is selected
  • Change the Preferred width to something like 2.5 centimetres

Changed the Preferred width

  • Click OK to see the change you made
  • Do the same for the first column, if all of your text is not on the same line
  • Highlight your text and make some formatting changes: bold text, and centred
  • Enter some numbers in all the other cells (any numbers will do)
  • Format the numbers: Bold text and centred
  • Your table should look like the one below:

The table with data added, and some formatting

Now add some colour and shading for the background cells, just like you did for the first table. You can shade the background for the places row in a different colour from the Nationalities. The background shading for the numbers can be in a different colour again. But the choice is entirely yours.

Here's what your Table might look like when you're done:

Some colour has been added to the table


The final thing to add is a border, which we'll so in the next section.

Learn How to add a Border to a Table -->

Computer Tutorials List