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Grandparents Day is Sunday, September, 7!

Thanks to the ample amount of communication technologies available today, it is easier than ever to keep your children connected to their grandparents, even if they live thousands of miles away. The traditional method of communicating over the phone is still the most common way for grandparents and grandchildren to keep in touch; however, children as old as nine can have difficulty understanding and processing phone conversations.

Here are a few ideas for using other types of technology to connect with grandparents:

Email

Email is a possibility, as parents or another adult can type the message the child would like to send. Handwritten letters, pictures, etc. can be scanned and emailed, or sent through postal mail.

Video Calling

Video calling options are growing in popularity and can be used in a variety of ways. Families can set up single line calls between two locations or 'conference' calls with multiple people from different places.

Open Connections

"Open Connections", which simply means to leave the video chat open for several hours, are a great way to 'spend time together' no matter how far apart you are! Children can work on an art project, build a block castle, sing songs, or just about anything with grandparents watching, encouraging and even singing along. 

Social Media and Apps

Social media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram can be used to share photos, videos, and messages. There are even apps that have been developed, such as ZuberFamZoom, which lets two people, anywhere in the world and play together in real time. Look into Google Hangouts as well!

This Sunday, be sure to wish your Grandparents a Happy Grandparents Day, on the phone, through a video chat or in person!

Source:
Moffatt, J., David, J. & Baecker, R.M. (2013). Connecting Grandparents and Grandchildren,  In Naustadedter, C., Harrison, S., & Sellen, A. (Eds.), Connecting Families: The Impact of New Communication Technologies on Domestic Life (pp. 173-194).  New York, NY: Springer.

Katie Fink

The UNL Learning Child Team

Katie Fink has a B.S and M.A. in Early Childhood and Early Intervention from The Ohio State University. She is a member of the Learning Child Team with University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension. Her areas of specialization include using technology to develop interactive and easily accessible programs for child care professionals and families and supporting early childhood professionals in creating quality early learning environments for all children. Learn more about Katie and the rest of The ...

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