When I was teaching, I found the "non-traditional-age" students both challenging and usually quite rewarding. They were great to call on when I made a reference the "traditional-age" students wouldn't recognize.
One idea I hit on repeatedly for them is that some of the "ways things are done" were selected arbitrarily--sometimes out of thin air, it seems--and not to feel inadequate because they can't "figure it out." No matter how logical they are and how hard they try, it isn't going to happen.
Among the important skills is using the search methods to chase these "way things are done." However, the vocabulary can be arbitrary and frustrating, so there's another stumbling block. Who decided it was going to be "records" and "fields" and "files"? "Records"--that's LPs and 45s and how we listened to Elvis before he went into the Army. "Fields"--Ooh! Ooh! I know that one! That has something to do with growing corn and soybeans. "Files" are how you sharpen a hoe. I used to tell them one of my major functions in life was teaching them to translate Nerd into Hillbilly. More than once I said to a student, "I'm sorry, I can't make that one make sense to you--or me. We just have to live with it." And they accepted that.
Convincing these people to give themselves a break is tremendously important. This is incredibly new to them. Teach them to be patient with themselves.
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