Thursday, April 22, 2010

Are Video Games Harmful?

Like TV, there is an ongoing debate about whether video games are harmful to our children. The quote, “Too much TV will rot your brain!” sticks out vividly in my mind. However, I actually feel that video games can be beneficial to our children. Of course, like everything else they do in life, they should be played in moderation. Video games have come so far since we were children. Kids no longer sit still in front of a computer with a small joystick. They are up and about with wireless controllers working on their eye hand coordination while doing physical activities. The video games that require movement are not the only ones that are beneficial. Many of the children’s games improve fine motor and cognitive skills as well. My girls love playing games that have jigsaw puzzles and mazes. Completing these tasks with a controller or stylus is much harder than completing them with a pencil. My girls also have games that help reinforce reading, math, and social skills. They think, create, and explore through a medium that they couldn’t do elsewhere. Handheld games, like the Nintendo DS, are also great for travelling or when your child isn’t feeling well enough to play with other kids. Why not let your kiddos have some fun instead of sitting around all day being bored? Do you think video games are harmful or helpful to our children’s development? Grab a latte, put up your feet, and join the discussion!

6 comments:

Lanita @ A Mother's Hood said...

We have to be really careful with how much our 11 year old plays video games. She has Reactive Attachment Disorder and if she plays too much, her brain shifts from working in the analytical front part of the brain to the fight/flight/flee area in the back of her brain...what we call the lazy brain. That's when we see her start to slide down the rabbit hole. So, unfortunately, playing video games for her is a rare treat that is monitored closely.

Butterfly Flutter said...

I agree with Lanita our oldest son has major disobedience problems when we let him play too much video games. In fact, you can tell when he has been playing too much at school. We are changing private school for our boys next fall. One of the reason it is closer for us and the school only allows students to play educational games only. AMEN!!!

Debbie said...

I really think it depends on the actual game and how much time is spent playing! I remember my brothers playing awful war games that were really realistic. My son isn't there yet, but I won't have him spend hours a day shooting people, even if it is virtual.

Amberlynn said...

I think it really depends on the type of video game. If they are playing something that's age appropriate, then sure, video games are fine. But having an 8-year old play something like Grand Theft Auto or Call of Duty? No way. Video games put the player into the mindset of the character, which is partly why mature video games make one more aggressive. Not mention a false reality is portrayed, one where no one really dies, they're just "knocked out" and are often revived later. Exposure to such games can have psychological effects later down the road.

Kel said...

I definitely agree that the video games should be age appropriate. My kids are only 3 and 5, so all their games are based on learning and movement. My husband's games are the violent and my girls are not allowed to be in the room when he plays.

blueviolet said...

I'm kind of thinking that it's ok in moderation. All things in moderation.