In recent years, there has been a lot of hype about how bad it is for kids to be constantly playing online games. It has been said that kids today who play online games are withdrawing from social contact with the rest of their peers. It has also been said that playing games online takes away from their physical activity. Another point that has been brought up suggests that kids are learning less by participating in playing games online.
Although there is some element of truth to all of those things, there are also benefits kids can achieve by participating in online games. Although kids may not be face-to-face with other kids their own age, they are interacting through the electronic chats that accompany most games. Also they are being exposed to all different types of kids, as well as kids from different cultures that they may not have a chance to interact with in their present environment. Kids playing these internet games are learning to get along with different sorts of people and learn about different cultures, within a fun environment. They are also learning to give and take, as in sharing, when they play the games, because often when playing with others, they have to wait their turn to fight an enemy or rely on another player to help them destroy their foe.
The next point about physical activity may be truer. It is true that kids may spend more time sitting in front of their computer than in playing street hockey, as children in the past used to do. But there are games out there that are now taking this into consideration, like the physically active games of the WII system. You should also consider though, that playing internet games increases your child’s hand-eye coordination, so playing the online games is actually teaching them a skill that is akin to playing basketball or hockey, in a more real world where hand-eye coordination may come in handy as a job seeking skill.
The last point suggested was that children are learning less by sitting in front of their computer playing games, that they are using up their reading and learning time in just playing games. When you consider that as a very young child, the best way to teach them new things is to make the learning fun. Thus the internet games creates a fun environment for a child to learn. Not all the games are fights and killing. As mentioned, the kids learn a lot about hand-eye coordination. They also learn to share and take turns, in other words patience in dealing with others.
The internet is a great learning tool and a tool that will take children into their future. A child that plays online games must learn how to use the internet, which is a necessary skill to perfect in today’s high-tech job world. Also, a certain amount of research is necessary for some of the games. And some of the games, war games for instance, teach a bit of history and military strategy. These all add to a child’s cognitive learning abilities.
Playing online games also teaches a child to use his imagination. They must visualize the world that they play in, remember passageways, figure out how to defeat an enemy, and use their mind in other ways.
So there are benefits to children playing online games. You may not realize that they are learning, interacting and gaining skills which are important in their future world.
It is always up to a parent how much time they allow their children to spend playing online games. It is good to balance their game time with other activities, but playing online games does have its benefits too.