- Technology

Pandemic Grandparenting – How to use the internet to keep in touch

COVID-19 has changed the lives of millions of people across the globe. This pandemic has forced individuals and families to change how they do things such as working, shopping, dining, schooling, visiting, traveling, and much more. Due to social distancing by at least 6 feet, many businesses and schools went virtual. You can order groceries online and pick them up curbside, children have virtual classrooms, and business meetings are held over Zoom calls and other social platforms.

Senior citizens are at higher risk of contracting the virus, so many have been forced to resort to virtual visits with family members. Internet platforms have become a reliable way for them to stay connected to their grandchildren and other family members. Social media like Facebook, video calls through Facetime or Zoom, and Google Hangout are various ways grandparents can keep in touch with their families.


According to the Pew Research Center, 46% of individuals age 65 and older use Facebook. Facebook is a great way to stay up to date on many things, such as the lives of family members and strangers, current events, and much more. On Facebook, you can post pictures, and videos and people can comment on the specific photo or video and carry conversations. You can create a regular post that allows others to comment on. It only takes a quick minute for someone to reply, whether they live next door or in another state.

If you see another post that you would like your family member to see, you can tag their name in the post, and your family member is notified. It is an easy way to share moments with each other virtually. When you have been away from your family for many months, and your grandkids are reaching new milestones, you can keep up with them on Facebook if your family member shares those achievements.

Video calls

There are numerous platforms for video calls. If you are on a computer, laptop, or tablet, you can download Zoom or Skype to set up video chats with your family and friends. It also allows more than one individual to be connected so that you could have all three children in three different states all on the same video call interacting with each other. It is perfect for holidays and birthdays during the pandemic. There is also Facetime which is on Apple cellphones and iPads, or Google Duo for non-Apple products. You can use these when you are on the go and want to video call instead of a typical phone call.

Google Hangouts

Google has also created its own platform for various kinds of interaction. You can do live video calls, voice calls, and texting all through Google Hangouts. Two or more users can be in the conversations, so you can have multiple separate groups with specific individuals. Photos and videos can also be shared in these conversations.


Technology in the 21st century has changed the way we interact with others daily. We can interact with family and strangers across the world right at our fingertips. We no longer must wait for a letter to be mailed and received. We can press a button and dial or message anyone. During this pandemic, the internet has allowed many individuals to keep in touch with family and friends. For grandparents who were already using social media and video calls to see their relatives, there may not have been a change in how they do things. Still, others may have needed to adjust to using the internet and these various platforms. Luckily, there are several platforms to use, whether you have a smartphone, tablet, or computer.

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