Time for a New iPad for Dad — iPad for Dad #24

ipad4dad5It is time to purchase a new iPad for my father.

If you have followed this blog for the past several years you know that three years ago we (my husband, my daughter, my son-in-law, and me) purchased an iPad for my father’s birthday. The iPad for Dad project, beginning in May 2010, has been an enormous success, and it’s generated a long list of blog posts here on As Our Parents Age.

Rarely do I arrive at my parents’ house without seeing his iPad set up and a quick glance demonstrates that Dad, now 90 years old, has been using it or is about to sit down to write or search. He’s written over 400 journal posts on the iPad — tapping the little arrow and sending them off to his family of readers — and many of these mini-essays shared rich ideas (of course he’s always had these), interesting observations, and detailed family information (much of it new to me and other family members).

What I liked most about the iPad was its ease of use and the fact that it’s always connected to my parents’ wireless. It does not require waiting around while programs boot up, and from the beginning of this project Dad hardly needed any tutoring to get going.

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iPads for Seniors? My Dad Knows How Cool It Is!

Early on iPad training with my dad.

Early on iPad training with my dad.

iPads for seniors as a way to decrease isolation and stimulate intellectual curiosity?  You bet! After writing over 20 iPad for Dad columns about my dad and his iPad, I could have told them so and my dad can, too.

I know that Steve Jobs was not thinking about seniors in the elder years of their lives when he conceived Apple’s iPad, but it’s the perfect tool for them — lightweight, easy to use, intuitive, connected to a world of resources, and after just a bit of training, it enables seniors to do things that they want to do (check news, watch movies, connect electronically with family members, etc.).

An article in today’s Washington Post (July 14, 2013), Successful Program to Help D.C. Senior Citizens Use iPads to Prevent Isolation Will Expand, that describes a District of Columbia pilot program, funded by the AARP Foundation, that distributed 55 iPads to seniors and offers classes on a regular basis. According to the report, no one has dropped out of the training and no iPads have been lost. Now the program is doubling.

We live in a connected world — in fact we take it for granted. People who do not have access may experience isolation. Moreover, many elders either do not have access to the Internet, or if they do, there’s not get enough training to get started with life’s  technology tasks. As they age into later years, elders are still eager to learn — lifelong learners, actually –  and they can be well served if their adult children or their communities help them gain access to technology tools and entre to the required training.

I’d love to know where else there are other successful iPad programs for seniors.

A Snow Story Never Heard Before: iPad for Dad #23

Read other iPad for Dad posts.

Whether or not you help a parent get started writing on an iPad, when you encourage writing activities you often get the opportunity to read wonderful stories like the memory below. I had never heard about this event before Dad composed his short essay. Dad writes on his iPad at least every other day and sometimes more often. What makes it especially lovely for me is that I can picture the playground and the old parsonage because I also played there in the snow many years later.

The playground where this story took place is behind the Silver Lake Baptist Church (as it used to look) in Belleville, New Jersey.

The playground where this story took place is behind the Silver Lake Baptist Church (as it used to look) in Belleville, New Jersey.

Washington’s Birthday Long Ago — My Dad’s Memory

I suppose I can begin a story with “In the Old Days.”

One Washington’s Birthday, we had a record snowstorm in Belleville, New Jersey, and trudging one’s way to the church’s playground, adjacent to the Parsonage, required boots. I had them on and ear muffs too. So did my friends Nickie, and Benny, and Mario.

We rolled up huge balls of snow on our Church playground and were in the process of building a snow man six feet high when Cal turned up. Cal was a grown up and a painter by trade. He was well-known at the church for anything that needed a coat of paint, but he also had drawing skills and entertained us many times with interesting sketches of the characters of the Bible – David for example, John for another, and the popularized head of Christ. We were all impressed by his skill.

Out came Cal, and he began to reshape the mounting pile of snow. We caught on immediately. He was shaping a bust of George Washington — eyes, nose, cheeks, neck, shoulders, and even that strange tri-cornered cap. The finished masterpiece attracted a number of persons who chanced the chill and watched from behind the fence that enclosed the playground. We all marvelled — it looked just like a picture book Washington.

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Staten Island Storm Relief 56 Years Before Sandy: iPad for Dad, #22

Today my father, Rev. Elmo Pascale, sent me a blog post (written on his iPad) with 1956 memories describing how past Staten Island floods made people flee their homes and the relief efforts at his church. Looking at a map I believe he is referring to Midland Beach.

My Staten Island Years and the

Vulnerable Coastline Along the Lower Bay Area

In January, 1956, the New York State Congregational (Church) Conference journal, “Conference Trails,” published an article about my pastoring at the Oakwood Heights Community Church on Staten Island. The article included routine pictures and comments, save for one section that, in light of the current Hurricane Sandy storm, seems rather poignant.

The middle bay of New York City (Oakwood Beach, Staten Island), a short distance from our church was subject to severe flood conditions, and the article about my ministry explained how our Church, with the help of the Red Cross, provided beach residents with overnight retreats from storms and flood conditions.          Continue reading

iPad for Dad, #21: An Easy-to-Use Speaker

My dad loves to listen to music, mostly classical, but other musical genres as well. Mostly he fires up his stereo, a boom-box, or the local classical music radio station.

Now, he has a third option — listening with his iPad.

For Christmas we gave Dad the iHome rechargeable portable speaker for iPad. The iPad itself simply sits in the doc, the same way it sits on Dad’s keyboard dock. While the iHome sound isn’t quite at the quality of his stereo speakers, it’s good.

We downloaded the TuneIn RadioPro app which streams all types of music and programming from hundreds of radio stations. I preset seven or eight classical and jazz music stations as well as a baseball channel and a few talk shows. All dad has to do it touch the preset buttons.

If he wants to do more with TuneInRadio, and I expect he will, we can do more instruction later.

If you like this post, read some of the other descriptions of our Father/Daughter iPad for Dad adventures – iPad for Dad, #1iPad for Dad, #2iPad for Dad, #3,  iPad for Dad, #4iPad for Dad, #5iPad for Dad, #6,  iPad for Dad, #7iPad for Dad, #8,  iPad for Dad, #9iPad for Dad, #10iPad for Dad, #11iPad for Dad, #12iPad for Dad, #13,  iPad for Dad, #14,  iPad for Dad, #15iPad for Dad, #16,  iPad for Dad, #17 , iPad for Dad, #18,  iPad for Dad, #19iPad for Dad, #20iPad for Dad, #21 and iPad for Dad, # 22.

iPad for Dad, #20: Battery Life

Dad continues to write on his iPad.

If you are still thinking about purchasing an iPad, either for yourself or for a senior parent, read the excellent, and very entertaining, iPad battery tribute over at Paul’s iPad blog. iPad batteries last a long time. Even when a person is working on heavy-duty projects, charging on a daily basis is rarely required.

Best Quote from Paul’s Post

How good is the battery? You find yourself doing funny things when you buy an iPad. I noticed this on day two of my iPad journey where I took her on an obligatory trip to Starbucks when I found myself doing something funny … I stopped looking for the seat next to a plug, I looked for the comfy chair.

My dad continues to write away on his iPad, and rarely does he need to think about the battery. Total convenience! And I have the same experience with mine.

If you like this post, read some of the other descriptions of our Father/Daughter iPad for Dad adventures – iPad for Dad, #1iPad for Dad, #2iPad for Dad, #3,  iPad for Dad, #4iPad for Dad, #5iPad for Dad, #6,  iPad for Dad, #7iPad for Dad, #8,  iPad for Dad, #9iPad for Dad, #10iPad for Dad, #11iPad for Dad, #12iPad for Dad, #13,  iPad for Dad, #14,  iPad for Dad, #15iPad for Dad, #16,  iPad for Dad, #17 , iPad for Dad, #18,  iPad for Dad, #19iPad for Dad, #20iPad for Dad, #21 and iPad for Dad, # 22.