Explicit Instruction: Computer Basics
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During periods of direct instruction, instructors should explicitly teach the components of basic computer skills. Instructors should have access to technology to walk learners through the individual process as they model and discuss the different skills. Instructors should be cautious of using technical jargon that can exacerbate negative Emotions surrounding computer use with adults, especially with the elderly. It is also important to convey that in order to keep up with technological advances, it is essential to develop a Learner Mindset with a willingness and ability to learn new technologies. So, elderly learners may benefit from both direct instruction and mentoring to foster continued interest and Motivation.
Explicit lessons can be done in person or virtually through a variety of learning platforms. Virtual lessons can include instructor-created slideshow presentations, videos, and audio files that walk learners through the different processes in easy-to-access formats. Directions for access should be clearly explained and modeled. These lessons should be stored to allow on-demand access for frequent rehearsal. This practice helps learners retain information into Long-term Memory and can help learners troubleshoot when they are using digital tools in real-time. Products should include chat and comment features to allow learners to interact with instructors, particularly when they have questions or concerns.