Do you have a kid playing video games non-stop instead of doing homework or socializing with friends? Is his social behavior worsening because of a constant need to sit in front of a computer and dive into his own virtual world? Believe it or not, a lot of parents know exactly what you feel. It is because advanced technology has made video games easier to play and more accessible than ever before.
Kids and Video Games, Entertainment vs. Addiction
Not all kids become addicted to video games. Even though we’re talking about an extremely engaging activity, the education he gets from a parent is directly linked to his craving and enthusiasm for video games. Basically, if you don’t get involved in the social life of your kid and you allow him to do whatever he wants, he will start developing an inappropriate behavior. Video games are alluring, and many parents would let toddlers play them just to get them off their backs, or persuade them to stop crying. This is not the best approach to use if you want to educate your little one; in fact, you’re offering him a new environment where he can make friends and socialize.
Kids seek attention, and if they can’t get it from parents, they won’t hesitate to look for it someplace else. The internet is an ideal “playground”, and virtual games foster the perfect place for kids to interact and feel appreciated.
Kids and Video games – a Statistical Analysis
You’re not the only parent worried that his children will develop an addiction for video games.A related survey was performed in 2010 on 2,000 kids with ages between 8 and 18. The results showed that the average amount of time spent playing a video game was 7 hours. This is alarming and in the long term, it may lead to severe behavioral issues in kids. On the bright side, the study in questioning didn’t find that video games create addiction. They alienate kids from what’s happening around them, but that’s only because they don’t get the right amount of attention in real life from friends and family.
It is important for parents to get more involved in the education of their toddlers. Certain video games are good for their intellect, although you may want to perform a thorough research before making a choice. Also, limiting the time your children spends playing on a computer or iPad is a good idea too. You want them to learn something from the gaming experience, not get totally immersed and stop sensing what’s happening around them.
Video Games and Their Main Benefits
It’s not something you want to hear, but we must admit that certain video games can do a lot of damage. If you’re the parent of a child who enjoys video games, it’s fundamental that you assess his behavior from up-close. Don’t allow your kids to play for more than 2 hours, and help them select games that are useful and educational too, not just entertaining.
Certain games promote physical activity, while others stir the intellect and have an educational purpose. They’re excellent at helping kids develop their cognitive abilities, as well as sharing and cooperation skills. However, this doesn’t mean you should allow your 10-year old to play “Call of Duty” or some other violent video game.
Be a responsible parent and help your kids choose games that are right for their age. Limit the time spent in front of a computer, and let them play games as a reward for having done something right. For example, reward your preschooler with 1 hour of play only after he has eaten his veggies for lunch.
This is a guest post by Davis Miller and Make Up Games 365!
Photo Credit: Flickr via Creative Commons
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