Computers can exercise seniors’ brains

By Garth Elrich, Secretary/Public Relations and Jean Pedersen, Volunteer Programs Coordinator
Revelstoke Senior Citizens’ Association

Studies show that mental stimulation is both challenging and satisfying, allowing the user to improve their sense of well being, self confidence and cognitive skills.

Learning new things and having new experiences is a good way to exercise the brain. Studies also say that seniors who use computers have fewer depressive symptoms than those who don’t. With the ability to communicate through email, seniors can enjoy a closer relationship with family and friends who live out of the area. Word processing programs improve communications and writing skills, you never know — you may want to write your memoirs. Or perhaps you want to track your expenses, research your family history, download and share pictures from your new digital camera, play games — the possibilities are endless. You don’t even need to own your own computer to become computer literate; you can use the computer at your public library, the senior’s computer lab — if you’re a member, or other public computers.

You are never “too old to learn new tricks” and it can be very rewarding to learn to email or “surf the net.” Nowhere is that more evident than at the Revelstoke Seniors Center. The computer lab hosts five computers (laptops are welcome) and we have been offering classes to seniors who are interested in learning how to use computers or who want to expand their knowledge and skills. The program has proved very successful and below is a list of the classes and attendance that they’ve had since last fall.

Question & AnswerOctober 1, 20104
Basic PlusOctober 5, 6, 7, 20105
Basic PlusOctober 12, 13,14, 20105
Library Site NavigationOctober 15, 20101
Managing EmailOctober 26 & 28, 20105
Power PointNovember 16, 17, 18, 20104
Photo EditingDecember 7, 8, 9, 20104
Photo EditingJanuary 18, 19, 20, 20115
Beginner BasicsFebruary 8, 9, 10, 20114
Photo Editing, Part 2February 15, 16, 17, 20114
Power Point, Part 2February 22, 23, 24, 20114
Power Point, Part 2February 28, March 2, 3, 20114
SkypeMarch 1, 20116
Beginner EmailMarch 4, 20114
Beginner BasicsMarch 8, 9, 10, 20114
Beginner EmailMarch 16, 20112
Beginner EmailMarch 29, 20111
Beginner EmailMarch 30, 20112
Internet Safety PresentationMarch 31, 201116
Beginner ExcelApril 12, 13, 14, 20114
SkypeApril 20, 20114
Beginner Photo EditingApril 26, 27, 28, 20115

These classes are offered free to members of the association and are taught by volunteer tutors who generously share their skills and interests. Tutors do not have to be a member or have any teaching experience, they just need a lot of patience and an interest in sharing their knowledge.  More volunteer tutors and class suggestions are always welcome. If you don’t have time to volunteer yourself, you can still take an active role in promoting these activities to the people who do have the time and the skills to share.  Anyone interested in the Computer Training Program, either as a student or tutor, can contact the Revelstoke Senior Citizens’ Association.

The coordinator is available at the center, Tuesday through Friday, between 9 and 12 or can be reached at (250) 837-9456. We are located at 603 Connaught Avenue, so you can also drop in during these times to register as a volunteer tutor or to take a class.