Senior Citizen's Guide to Pittsburgh Fall/Winter Edition 2015-16 - page 24

Say You Saw It in the Senior Citizen’s Guide to Pittsburgh
People live longer and more happily when they are
as active and social as they can be. Lifelong learning
engages many aspects of the mind, body, and
spirit—maybe even all three at once.
In the greater Pittsburgh area, community centers,
local school districts, community libraries, and local
colleges and universities offer an array of free or
economically-priced, non-credit classes for seniors.
Lifelong learning may look like typical academic
classes. We may study the horror tales of Edgar Allan
Poe, religion classes like contemporary Judaism,
social science courses on topics like racial justice or
gender and society. Intellectual exercises may include
participating in academic discussions on challenging
topics such as the changing role of women relating to
men today.
Alternately, we might try fiction writing or studying
a memoir. Life story writing helps lower high blood
pressure; revisiting our past experiences also helps us
integrate them in our present life and creates empathy
for the self.
Lifelong learning classes need not be academic. We
might try classes in local venues that challenge us
in other ways such as painting and drawing, healthy
eating and vegetarianism, or gardening, among others.
Social activities also play a critical role in successful
aging. Things like taking classes, joining interest
groups such as quilting clubs, attending senior citizen
center luncheons, and participating in religious services
keep all of us “in the loop.”
Having Fun With Lifelong
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