Creating a Document
& Word Processing
Teaching a senior a word processing
system like "Word" or "Word Perfect" or any of the
major systems is beyond the scope of the "Reverse Mentoring Project."
It is the limited goal of "The Reverse
Mentoring Project" to simply teach a senior how to create a simple
document, with a view in mind of saving the document or printing the
document, attaching it to an email, or incorporating it into the body
of an email.
A senior lawyer may feel a sense of accomplishment
by being able to use a computer and printer instead of a typewriter
to create and print a document.
1. Give the senior a floppy disk to use for
2. The senior should be shown how to open the "Notepad""
or "WordPad" program into which the document will be typed.
3. The senior should compare the similarities and differences between
the keyboard for the computer and the keys of a typewriter.
4. Demonstrate how the cursor can be moved with the scroll feature and
how the scroll feature can move up and down until released.
5. Explain how the keyboard and the typewriter are similar. Both have
a capitals feature. The typewriter has the Shift lock key, which stays
down until relieved and the shift key on the typewriter, which bounces
back immediately. The keyboard has a CAPS LOCK button, which stays in
force after stroking until stroked again, and has a light on the upper
right of the keyboard, which stays lit so long as the Caps Lock feature
6. The typewriter has a backspace, which backs up one space but does
not erase anything.
7. The keyboard has a backspace key, which erases going backward so
long as it is held down until released. The keyboard has a delete key
which erases forward so long as held down until released.
8. Explain the tool bar.
9. Teach them not to panic when making a mistake and how they can go
back one step with control Z (undo).
10. Show them how to "Erase" a word or letter by any one of
three methods - Delete Forward, Backspace Backward or Highlight and
11. Explain how a single word or a whole block of text can be copied,
deleted or moved (Control x) or copied (Control C) and pasted (Control
12. Teach how to change font size (An important feature for people with
reduced vision.) using the zoom feature, or font size feature, or scrolling
the mouse while holding down the control key.
13. Teach how to print the document.
14. Teach the senior how to save the document onto a disc.
15. Teach the tab feature to tab forward and the tab shift feature to
16. If the senior can type, encourage the senior to type a document
and save onto a floppy a summary of what he or she has learned at the
end of each session.