What Video Games Can Teach Your Kids
Most parents and teachers think that playing video games regularly is a waste of time and that kids should be doing something more useful. However, it’s important to remember that approved games played in moderation can be highly engaging and teach your kids a lot of very useful skills. In fact, a new study from the APA indicates that playing video games may provide many more benefits than previously thought, including “spatial navigation, reasoning, memory, problem-solving skills, creativity and perception.” Here are just a few things that video games can teach your kids, so you can keep an open mind when they’re next playing.
Persistence and Patience
Video games are often associated with kids that have trouble concentrating. However, video games, more specifically action games, often capture children’s attention for the entire game. Often this is because the player needs to achieve certain objectives to progress to the next level of the game, meaning kids’ attention spans and concentration levels are put to the limit. Not only does this teach kids to be persistent but will teach them patience!
Strategic Thinking and Decision Making
Most video games involve rules, quests and challenges. This means the player has to think very carefully before making any decisions to ensure they progress to the next level. Often this involves tasks such as searching, negotiating, planning and trying lots of different methods so they can advance further in the game. Not only does this teach kids to think strategically in their approach, but also improves their ability to make decisions quickly and problem solve.
Games that require children to use a controller or a keyboard and mouse to operate the movement on screen can help teach hand-eye coordination.
When playing video games kids often have the option to modify and select character personalities, giving them the perfect opportunity for self-expression. Some video games also allow children to design their own worlds, exchange maps or other custom content, which teaches them to be creative without limits.
Communication and Social Skills
Many kids see video games as a social activity rather than something they do alone. In fact, lots of games involve constant communication and some even require multiplayer participation, which can result in meaningful friendships being formed and a build-up of communities. Being part of a team and making new friends through gaming is teaching kids important communication and social skills which over time can help improve levels of confidence and self-esteem.
Remember, screen time is only beneficial in moderation and it’s important that your child doesn’t spend all of their free time on electronic devices. We also advise approving any games your kids are playing not only for online safety but to make sure they’re age appropriate.