Monthly Archives: November 2012

Knowledge Exchange

When it comes to learning about the modern technologies and gadgets of today, there are many benefits for adults 55+ to learn from younger, more technology savvy generations. Some might think, what do the younger generations get out of helping older adults?

Volunteering as a technology tutor for adults 55+ with ETAG has benefits of its own. First, young volunteers are able to learn from the older adults we work with. They can instil in us how the world once was and how their experiences have helped them learn valuable life lessons. Whether the discussion is gardening, relationships, or world events, to name just a few, having access to the ideas and opinions of an older generation helps many volunteers understand the world we live in a little better.

Second, volunteers are in a position to give back to our community, helping others achieve their goals. This is a great feeling! It’s always an amazing day when I’m able to help someone connect with their family via email or Facebook for the first time, or showing them how much incredible information is available using tools like Google and YouTube. The smile our older adult students get when they’ve accomplished something for the first time is the best part! That’s why many ETAG’s volunteers continue to stay involved.

At ETAG, adults 55+ are able to learn how to use  technology and be engaged with the younger generations, which is sometimes the only opportunity for this type of interaction for all the individuals involved, both young tutors and older students. This is always illustrated at ETAG’s Volunteer Technology Assistance Program, which pairs volunteers with adults looking for advice and help using technology. SO MUCH FUN FOR EVERYONE 🙂

– Ashia Arshad (ETAG Lead Volunteer)

November 28 Workshop

At the Burlington Seniors’ Centre, ETAG will be sharing our FREE Lifelong Learning Workshop titled: Technology in Today’s Digital World with the Burlington community. The event will be a fun filled morning, from 9:00am to 12:00pm, full of technology discussions, device demonstrations, and a hands on opportunity for participants to try the amazing gadgets available today with the help of ETAG’s incredible volunteer team.

Topics will include, but are not limited to, tablets (iPad, Android, Microsoft Surface, BlackBerry Playbook), e-readers (KOBO, Kindle), smartphones (iPhone, Android), Cell phones (Doro PhoneEasy), social networking (Facebook), and technologies launching in the near future. We will talk about what these technologies are typically used for, what the differences are, how to personalize them, and tips for using them safely.

To RSVP, please call the Burlington Seniors’ Centre at 905-335-7888.

Internet Radio

Since the invention of the television, and various other digital technologies, many believe that the radio is not listened to with the same popularity it once was; some would go as far as to say it is not listened to at all!

Fortunately, this is not the case. In fact, because of the Internet, listening to the radio has become even more accessible. Radio stations around the world, from local political programming, to movie soundtracks, classical, or jazz from Cuba, are broadcasting online and are available with the click of a button.

Since there are so many types of stations, some older adults find it difficult to access this fairly new resource. One fantastic example is broadcast from right here, in Toronto Canada! It’s Jazz FM 91.1. With their free iPhone and iPad app (400,000 downloads to date!) and from their website, listeners can tune into their local programming from anywhere on the planet. Wow! Also, just last summer, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) launched a radio station,  AARP Internet Radio with 18 channels. It’s free, simple to use, and has a variety of musical selections, from Rock n Roll, to the Classics, to Jazz, and even newer tunes. By clicking the “Music” button at the top of the page, you can select a station, an album, or style, then, just click play, and voilĂ !  You’re ready to listen to a flurry of songs.

By streaming the stations online, this free service uses your Internet to play just like a radio. It can be accessed in the United States and in Canada. You can even continue browsing the Internet without turning off the player.

The look of the radio may have changed, from a box in your living room, to a laptop you can carry around town, but its purpose and quality remain the same. By recognizing this amazing resource, seniors can access their favourite radio stations, and music with a few simple clicks.

– Aarthy Rajah (ETAG Lead Volunteer)

Workshop a Success!

On November 6th, ETAG’s Lifelong Learning Workshop in Mississauga was a great success! The workshop, titled Technology in Today’s Digital World, was geared towards adults 55+, and explored the amazing digital tools we have available today, what they can do, and how they can improve someone’s quality of life!

With the help of our amazing team, including our volunteer technology tutors, the beautiful V!VA Retirement Community, ONPEA,  and our friends at Doro and Microsoft, ETAG helped participants understand the different devices available today, with demonstrations, and hands on opportunities. We explored the incredible “APPS” that are available, many free of charge, and how these technologies can enhance day-to-day  life for everyone that learns how to use them!

What a great way to spend an afternoon 🙂 Can’t wait for our next showing of this workshop in Burlington, on November 28th at the Burlington Seniors Centre.

Click here for all the details. Hope to see you there!

– Chris Bint (ETAG)

ETAG explores Wii Sports

Did you know that you don’t need a court to play tennis, or an alley to go bowling? People everywhere are having fun with these games at home using a Wii. Are you familiar with Wii? Some may think I am speaking a foreign language… What is a “Wii”? Others might think that a “Wii” is for children, and adults shouldn’t play video games. A new project ETAG is coordinating at the Centre for Education and Training’s Oakville location, helps adults 55+ understand what a Wii is, and how it can help everyone stay active and social.

Irene, a long time ETAG participant, had never seen the insides of a bowling alley, yet she bowled like a pro at our Nintendo Wii session last week. After a short tutorial on how it all worked, Irene and a group of participants took turns competing against one another and in teams, both in bowling and tennis tournaments. It was an absolute blast! Everyone was having great fun, laughing and sharing a new experience together, with the help of ETAG’s volunteer technology tutors. The opportunity to learn and play with the Wii built team spirit and camaraderie in the participants. They can hardly wait for next week’s session.

The Wii is controlled by a light weight remote in each hand. It connects wirelessly with a sensor that sits on your television screen, which makes it easy to operate for everyone. According to WebMD, a website that helps user’s research medical topics, playing games such as Wii bowling and tennis, help seniors distress. Therapists have recognized that as we age, it’s common to become less active. Some technology savvy therapists utilize the Wii system in their rehabilitation and recreational routines.

– Simone Carpio (ETAG Lead Volunteer)