In an effort to expose my 11 year old nephew to the world outside of video games, I brought him with me to Yosemite Valley this past weekend. I let him use my 4x5 and I taught him some of the basics.
He learned how to level and zero the camera, and I taught him about compositional movements. After a few minutes under the dark cloth he had everything the way he wanted, and was able to focus the camera without my help. I kept things very simple for him and did not teach him how to use tilts or swings.
He also learned to use my light meter and set the shutter and aperture on the lens. He made a few exposures on Tmax 400, and had some difficulty understanding the concept behind positioning the darkslide after exposure; I think he was just afraid to make a mistake. I told him that every now and then we all make mistakes, and not worry so much. I think that helped him build some confidence.
I tried to stay off the camera most of the time and I just coached him along. Later he thanked me for teaching him how to use the camera and asked me if he could use it again. If he stays interested, I'll buy him his own 4x5.