With an increased amount of staying in and limited interactions, it’s easy to feel isolated. This can feel especially true for people who do not have online communities or social platforms to turn to. Seniors are more likely to be offline, which can make the increase of staying indoors especially boring and lonely. Introduce your loved one to the beauty of interactive technology so they can keep entertained and in touch during this time. We’ve provided tips for teaching technology to seniors to help you prepare your lesson plan.
Make It Relevant
While instructing technology use to seniors, let them know how it can be useful to them. Relate the information to their life to encourage a genuine desire to learn it.
There are plenty of reasons seniors should want to take up technology. Social distancing in the digital age has led to an influx of video chatting and online streaming. Seniors can contact old friends, keep in touch with family, or stream their favorite TV show after grasping a few technology basics.
Before diving into the details, get an idea of where your lesson’s audience is at. Ask questions regarding technology to see which terms or devices they are familiar with and which they find more complicated. Moving forward, relate the material to concepts they already understand to minimize the learning curve.
Take It Slow
Learning technology can be overwhelming! There are lots of facets of smartphones, tablets, and even within apps. When teaching seniors, it is important to monitor your pace and make sure that everyone is up to speed with the tech lesson. Allow moments between steps for learners to comprehend what was relayed to them. This spare time also gives seniors the chance to ask any necessary questions while exploring their devices.
In addition to minding your pace, be cognizant of your tech jargon. Use consistent language and try to avoid using technical terminology in your instruction. Simplify the lesson to ensure that everyone has a basic understanding before moving on to more complex tech details.
One of the easier tips for teaching technology to seniors is to streamline processes when possible. Ease the steps to finding an available network by introducing a convenient Ethernet cable. The perks of an HDMI cable with Ethernet are that it nixes the abundance of cables for additional devices and increases Internet speed.
Enjoy The “Wow” Moments
When learning something new, it is important to celebrate the smallest of victories. If your learners send their own text, upload to Facebook, or just find the app they were looking for, you should praise them for their newfound skills. This builds confidence and entices them to learn more.
If you feel like you’re losing your audience, refer back to how technology can be beneficial to them. Instruct them on how to get a video chat going with a grandchild or friend to promote a moment of amazement. “Wow” moments are meaningful opportunities to let folks remember the purpose of learning technology.