Three Things I Learned From The Microsoft Free In-Store Classes


Three Things I Learned From The Microsoft Free In-Store Classes

It has been weeks since my Mom received the Dell Inspiron 15 Computer. Teaching an older adult how to use a computer when he/she has not been too exposed to technology is often challenging and requires a lot of our own personal time. So, when I read that the Dell Inspiron Laptop that was gifted to my Mom came with free Spanish Instruction Classes to help her familiarize herself with her new device, I took the phone and scheduled an appointment.

The in-store session was phenomenal. Not only does Microsoft have a designated open space with seating dedicated to helping their clients, but they have well-trained customer service associates. Mara, from the San Diego Fashion Valley Microsoft Store, was our assigned representative. She was nice and very patient.

It all started as a session to teach my Mom the basics of her new device, like how to turn the computer on/off and how to search for files; however, I also learned a couple of new things that I did not know about the device and about myself.

Three Things I Learned from The Microsoft Free In-Store Classes

1.    Los Tres Amigos (The Three Friends)- Mara used very easy to remember vocabulary and provided tactics to help my mom remember where to go and where to click. Los Tres Amigos are three dots located at the top of the Edge browser. With Los Tres Amigos you can save whatever page you like on the start menu so that it is easier to access. This feature is great for everyone, but in particular for people who are starting to familiarize themselves with technology because they do not have to spend hours searching for a website that they had previously found.

2.    Change a crowded webpage into an easy to read page- Mara taught my Mom a feature that even I didn't know existed. You can remove ads from any site and change it into a "book" form that allows you to take notes, highlight, and make comments.

3.    Let Go- During the session, I was able to observe that Mara did something that I had never done in the time that I had tried to teach my Mom how to use her laptop, and it was to let her fail. I tend to take control of the situation when I see that my Mom did not understand a command or forgot how to do one of the steps I thought her; however, Mara was patient and after teaching her something she let my Mom do it all by herself. She allowed her to fail and when she could not figure something out, she would then take over and teach her again. I feel that many of us tend to get frustrated when we are teaching someone something new and we tend to take control of the situation and do not allow them to explore, fail, and learn. Towards the end of the session, I decided to let Mara, the expert, do her job and I tried to move away for lapses of time; however, I also tried to stay close because I too wanted to learn about some of the features that the Dell Inspiron 15 has.

Overall, I recommend that you take advantage of these free classes that Microsoft offers to their customers. Being in a different setting with someone that is patient, that speaks your same language, and that won't get frustrated when you fail, is imperative to the learning process. After our store visit, my Mom felt more confident when using her device and she is excited about returning for another session. She said she was happy that they offered classes in Spanish because she only had to worry about learning how to use the device and not about the language barrier or about me getting frustrated. Mara also helped us set up the device to be completely in Spanish so that my Mom could navigate through the setting more freely.

Mara is an excellent associate. She was patient, offered us something to drink, gave my mom a break, and was 100% patient, something I sometimes lack lol. She mentioned that they try to offer classes in other languages too and she made us feel welcomed to come back at any time for assistance. My Mom is already planning to schedule her second visit. For now, she knows the essentials, but with my help and that of the Microsoft Pro's she will be doing everything by herself in no time.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Microsoft . The opinions and text are all mine.

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