Computer Gaming: Their Good And Bad Contributions To Children

By on January 17, 2013

While the number of kids addicted to online gaming has been growing quite alarmingly, there is definitely something to appreciate about the existence of such games. And whether it is massive multiplayer online games or simple problem solving ones, it cannot be denied that there are advantages to them that parents can be thankful for.

1. They can work as brain enhancers
For one, online games are mediums for learning. Some are meant to teach the youth reading comprehension, others math and some, spelling. And there are those that allow them to develop hand, eye and body coordination. The more advanced ones orient kids to more complicated matters like morals, responsibility, and justice to name a few. And there are also those that teach them how to act properly in certain situations. As such, parents and educators can breathe a little more easily knowing they can lessen their usual burdens when it comes to guiding kids.

2. They can be a fun way to pass time.
Second, they are entertaining. Sometimes, it is the challenge of learning and solving mysteries that makes them so thrilling. Often times, it is the triviality of it all that serves as the hook. In any case, even adults cannot negate the fact that playing games are a great way to pass the time. And they do not necessitate you to exert a lot of effort, and even hurt yourself in the process. You can have fun anywhere and even share it with others.

3. They are a handy source of entertainment.
With this, one can also say that they are convenient. They are not that expensive to use unlike when you encourage them to play soccer or baseball. With the latter two, you have to buy them equipment, from balls to shoes and shirts. But with online games, as long as a steady internet connection is present, your child will be able to enjoy him or herself. In relation, online games also do not require big spaces or schedules. It can be played in any setting at any time.

4. They are great at bridging social gaps.
On this note, it is also essential to highlight how online games are helpful when it comes to encouraging kids to socialize. True, if you look at it one way, you’d find staring at a computer the whole day to be a form of isolation. But what you do not realize is that most games online provide or require some form of interaction between players. So your child is not necessarily keeping himself at an arm’s length from peers. Rather, he is just exploring an alternative means of communicating with them.

5. They do not go against the security and safety of kids.
A fifth upside of online games is that parents don’t need to worry about their children’s whereabouts or what they are doing. If you allow them to play at home, you can easily monitor their activities and even participate in them once in a while. No doubt it will be more dangerous to encourage them to stay out in the afternoon until late evening, playing sports with friends, than it would be to keep them in the home office, playing against other gamers or just figuring out a word puzzle.

6. They can pave the way for personal development.
Finally, there is also that benefit of them finding themselves or something they are passionate about when playing. Although it may not be similar on the surface, playing online games can actually inspire a child to do great things in the same way getting him involved in baseball games does. Who knows, they might just be encouraged to become a graphic designer or game developer when they grow up. Those aren’t shabby career options.

The drawbacks
Of course, this is not to say that gaming does not have its downsides. Nor does it aim to excuse it. Excessive dedication to playing online games can lead to real world disengagement. And aside from blurring the lines between what can and cannot be done, skewed game plots could also alter a kid’s sense of right and wrong, leading them to acts of violence. There is also that chance they will start neglecting themselves and attach too much value to any game achievements they receive, thereby developing illnesses, from ulcers to carpal tunnel.

These are just some of the reasons why parents still need to be involved in their children’s recreational activities, even with their seemingly behaved demeanor. Good if they are only interested in playing a BMX game, and at most aspire to execute the same stunts in real life as they do virtually. But what if they are indulging in violent ones? Will you only consciously curb their fantasies after they have been strongly ingrained in their psyche? In addition, they should also try and introduce a healthy balance of physical activity and mental stimulation that is not dependent on online games so they can also promote their well-being. Sitting and staring at a monitor does very little to promote a child’s circulation and strengthen his or her muscles. It also does not allow him to develop endurance, thereby making him sensitive to pain and infections.

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Cedric Loiselle is a highly talented writer providing quality articles for a wide range of niches including health and fitness, as well as computer and entertainment.

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