Do you have a 70+ year old grandparent who wants to post photos on Facebook or send messages on WhatsApp? Does your 70+ year old grandparents not know how to do either of those things? Do those same grandparents ask you to teach them how? I do and you probably do, too. So here is a step by step guide to teach you how to teach your grandparents how to use their technology or social media. In no time you will be able to teach your grandparents to be as savvy as a millennial (or at the very least, know how to turn on their iPad). Step one, make sure to take plenty of time to help them because they will need all of it. You may even decide to bring some food with you. I suggest a three course meal including dessert. Keep in mind that grandparents often take longer to learn new things and most of the gadgets you will be helping them with were not even around when you were a kid. Step two, explain the process so clearly you can see through them like glass. But don’t spend too much time on this step because you will probably have to repeat everything multiple times anyway. If I may break out the cliches, patience is a virtue, and you will need to be very virtuous in order to help them.
Step three, have them try to do the task. Once you have explained to your grandparents how to post a photo on Facebook, have them try it themselves. The first time they try, guide them through it (i.e. tell them what to do). Then let them try to figure it out themselves for anywhere between 30 seconds to a minute (depending on how tired you are) and then tell them what to do. Keep repeating this step for an indeterminate amount of time. This may be a good time to eat the food you brought.
After completing these steps, one of two things may occur. One, your grandparent may still not be able to use the technology or media platform in question, in which case you will need to decide whether or not you will continue teaching them or give up and tell them that you will do it for them. Some tools that may help you in your endeavors include patience, empathy and constant reminders of why you love them in the first place. The second possibility is that your grandparent does learn how to use the technology or social media, in which case, rejoice. Enjoy your free time until they ask you to teach them something else in two days!
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