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How to Teach Your Grandmother How to Use a Computer

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 3

It has been said that if you truly understand something then you should be able to teach it to your grandmother. You are fully aware of computer technology. Can you teach your grandmother how to use a computer? Maybe she doesn't even have one. Can you convince her to get one and put it to use? If you can, then you will be able to call yourself an expert in the computer field and likely a great teacher as well.

Grandmothers may be resistant to use a computer. While this was very true in the past, it is becoming less so now. There seems to be a technology gap for many grandmothers. Those older than perhaps 70 may still be reluctant to learn about computers and may not own one. Younger grandmothers may be quite active and adept. Everyone is different. The first thing to do is to evaluate your grandmother to see how interested in technology she is. This article is mainly focused on those grandmothers for who have little interest and ability in computer technology.

Asking your grandmother about her interest in technology might not be useful. If she doesn't have a computer then she likely doesn't know much about what they can do. When you ask her about technology, she is likely to tell you that she is not very interested and doesn't miss it. Find out what she would do with a computer yourself and don't even bother asking.

At this point, some research into your grandmother's interests, would be in order. Does she like to play card games like bridge, poker or others? Does she like to play chess? Is she a gardener, a traveler or an avid reader? If so, find some relevant web sites that offer content along these lines.

Perhaps your grandmother has heard about many computer applications but she isn't involved in them. Does she have a Facebook account? Does she know what Facebook is? Starting with this application can be very useful. Explain what the application can be used for. It lets her keep up with the things going on in the lives of her grandchildren and children. She can see posted photos. She can see how people interact. A lot of people have started using computers simply by getting to know one application well. Facebook can be a great way to start.

Does she have investments? There is a lot of information on the Internet about companies. Perhaps her investments are represented. Give her a general overview into the market research that is available. Explain, too, that she can watch her investments in real time and perhaps even get involved with electronic trading.

Does she have a lot of stories to share? If so, perhaps she would be interested in becoming an online author for Infobarrel, Squidoo or one of the many other similar sites. She may have quite a bit of time available to write articles for these sites. With a long lifetime of experiences, she could have a lot of topics that would lend themselves well to articles. Her memoirs could become important as a way of documenting family history. She can even earn some money this way as well.

Of course, it can cost some money to get your grandmother set up with a computer. The machine has a cost and it isn't much good without an Internet connection. Of course, a simple laptop is quite inexpensive these days. Depending on her location, a WI-FI Internet connection may already be available for her. Even if she has to pay her own Internet bill, the costs have been decreasing in recent years. By explaining how she can stay active and involved in the online area, you may be able to convince her that the costs are reasonable. These days, there are even ways to use the Internet without incurring any costs at all. Many senior citizen centers and homes have Internet access for their members. Many public libraries offer computers connected to the Internet as well. Your grandmother may want to use your computer or others in the family. There are always ways around the cost issue. Perhaps she can get an inexpensive machine and take it to one of the public WI-FI points at the library, a restaurant or other establishment.

If your grandmother needs further convincing, start by asking her about certain events in her life. What was it like when she got married? She likely has a lot of memories about that date. Even people with memory problems can surprise themselves and others when they start to think about significant events in their life. She might be able to tell you what the weather was like on her wedding day. She might tell you what she wore, what her parents wore and many interesting points that came up that day. Memory is a strange trait. Once a particular memory is explored, many more often come flooding out. Writing all of these down and creating an Infobarrel article about a wedding held long ago might be of great interest to your family and others. After that, getting her to write an article about her first job, her first child or her time in school may be easy.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of scam artists on the Internet. Many of these people target new Internet users. Be sure to explain the dangers that exist. No one needs to be scared off of the Internet but everyone needs to be aware. Explain what virus protection is. Explain what email attacks are. Show them the scam letters that promise huge riches. The more you do to expose the bad side of technology, the more your grandmother will be able to recognize the dangers herself. This will substantially reduce the risk of her falling victim to one of the scams.

In the second decade of the new millenium, there are multitudes of people using computers and the Internet all the time. Those who don't are being left behind. In the case of grandparents, this may not seem important, but they are missing out. Their grandchildren can post news that may be interest. They can use technology to research areas that interest them. They can contribute to their family and to society while living in their own familiar environment.


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Comments

Feb 22, 2011 9:53pm
Introspective
Never thought about it, but I'm sure many grandparents would love to connect with their family members on places like Facebook! Helping them understand how to use a computer is a great idea!
Feb 23, 2011 9:18am
Web_Info
Informative article. My grandmother is scared of the computer lol. After reading this article I'm now more at ease teaching my grandma. Thanks for sharing!
Mar 18, 2011 3:41pm
javrsmith
Facebook advertises that their biggest user group is 25-64 year old women. Many of them aged 50+ could well be grandmothers.
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