How to Teach Your Parents/Grandparents to Skype

It would definitely be a shame if your parents or grandparents missed out on an amazing technology like Skype, simply because they are intimidated by how it works. In order to foster closer family ties, especially if you live far apart, you should take the time to teach the elderly person in your life how to use Skype. Here are some tips for achieving this.

Plan to Set Up Skype When You are Visiting

Trying to set up Skype over the phone is a one-way ticket to meltdown-ville. It’s best to wait until you can be actually present, in the room, to help your parent or grandparent master this. For some of you, that might mean waiting until your next holiday visit, but that’s okay – in the meantime, you can make sure your elderly loved one has the necessary equipment.

Make Sure All the Pieces are Present

Obviously, your loved one will need a fast Internet connection (the place for assisted living Lancaster residents know to be the best will likely offer good Wi-Fi), an up-to-date computer and a webcam. If they lack the computer, laptops and PCs are selling for as cheap as ever, and many of them come with webcams embedded in the screen. Ensure that everything is ready before you begin the process. You should have your own laptop at the ready, so that you can test Skype right then and there.

Go Slow and Write Everything Down

Summon all your patience and try to keep the set-up as simple and jargon-free as possible. Don’t worry about teaching them anything except how to open Skype, how to sign in and how to make a call. Help them choose a username and a password – and then write everything down, including the steps for opening the program and signing in.

From there, you should go to another room and let your parent or grandparent try initiating or receiving a call on their own. They might need another walk-through with you present, guiding them, and that’s okay. It’s like learning another language, and no one gets that right on the first try.

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