If you’re learning new technology from your grand kids count yourself lucky. Your grandchildren are as familiar with technology, as you are with manual skills. He or she grew up breathing, living, and using tools that may seem challenging or unfamiliar.
The good news? Your grandchildren care about you. They love you. They want to stay connected with you. That’s really, really good news. It means you can learn new skills, and grow together.
While your grandchildren might not realize how much they know, they are deep in the world of learning. Think about it.
Children need to learn everything. They need to learn language, customs, culture, technology, interactions, dialogue, life skills, and school subjects. They need to practice their abilities to learn, and use their skills to keep learning.
If it’s been a while since you learned something brand new, take some tips from a 5-year old. With a fresh mindset, you’ll have a lot more fun learning how to get the most from your technology.
By the way, it doesn’t really matter what type of technology you are mastering. All these tips will help you have more fun and an easier time.
You are never too old to learn. You are never too young to learn. Isn’t that beautiful?
Whether you want to master the smart TVs or smartphone, you can start where you are. Age doesn’t even come into the conversation.
What’s the best way around the ‘I’m too old to learn’ belief? Challenge it!
Challenge the belief.
Show yourself that it is unfounded. Learn something new today. You may not learn the whole be-all-end-all of the technology you’d like to master. However, you can learn one new thing. Do this today. Do it tomorrow. By the end of the week or month, you’ll be the hero. You won’t hesitate to challenge that limiting belief of ‘too old to learn’ as false chatter.
Think about a 5-year old. They are usually not able to reach things. They need to get a booster stool to reach high counters and shelves. They have to ask for help in using unfamiliar tools. They might not know what certain big words mean.
What do they do? They work with what they’ve got.
As a learner, at any age, you can do the same. Many grandparents have physical conditions that limit mobility. Eyesight. Hearing. Manual dexterity. Speed of movement.
If you are experiencing a physical limitation, speak openly about it. Ask for help. Ask for more light. Explain what is going on for you, so your ‘instructor’ can adapt to match your specific needs.
What do you enjoy? What do you like doing? If you are an avid lover of books, find out how to listen to audiobooks. If you have a hard time reading small print of movie titles, learn how to access a list of movies with enhanced title descriptions.
If you want to have a zoom call to connect for a weekly conversation with your grandchildren, learn the steps. The key is to have a practical, fun, and engaging outcome to what you are learning.
Figure out what would the most important for you. What is it that would be like getting a bright cherry on a sundae?
Start learning about technology that makes it easy to do what you love doing.
Every child understands this concept. Isn’t it time you put it to use?
Learning by modeling is one of the fastest ways to learn a new skill. This is why we love it when we get personal instruction. The teacher, in this case, your grandchild can show you how to do something.
While they are showing, ask them to explain. Have them do it slowly, so you have time to understand the steps. Then, immediately, do the steps yourself.
The important thing? Watching, hearing, and doing. When you follow this method, you’ll see the steps, hear the instructions, and practice doing the actions. This makes it easy to do the steps on your own.
This hands-on approach is a great way to gain confidence.
Once you’ve seen the steps, listened to the explanations, and done it yourself…what’s next? Do it again!
Start with small chunks of skill building. Practice these steps over and over, until it becomes as easy as signing your name.
Asking questions is how we learn. There is no such thing as a ‘stupid’ or ‘silly’ question. The only thing that could create a feeling of stupidity is not asking a question.
If you have questions during the week, jot them down. This is a great way to organize the flow of learning during an instructional session.
Experiment. Try things out. If you get stumped while using technology, do a Google search. Type in “how to do …” and write out your problem. If you encounter an error or can’t understand the directions, write down the steps, and do one at a time.
Two things will happen. First, you’ll feel more confident when something unexpected happens. Second, you are more likely to solve the problem.
By practicing problem solving, you are strengthening your independence. If you are not able to solve it entirely, you can share your exploration and actions in your next session.
Each person has a unique set of skills and abilities. You may not know all the latest technology, but you can learn. With these simple tips, you are never too old to take on a technology challenge.
The #1 idea: learning is fun when you can use it. By starting with the things that are most important to you, you’ll keep technology learning highly relevant. That’s like a big, red cherry on the top of a sundae.