Is Gaming Good or Bad For The Youth

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Is gaming good or bad for the youth
Is gaming good or bad for the youth

Ever since the invention of games (probably since the start of mankind), people have found a lot of benefits from them, from socialization to gaining self-confidence and having fun of course. The invention of video games has changed all of that, to good, but unfortunately, to bad also.

Of course with the rise of technology there are more and more different video game, ranging from innocent games like Tetris, all the way to violent and bloodshed games like Assassins Creed and Fortnite. You might even hear your kid saying something like “kill ‘em all” during gaming, but fear not, it is a usual saying during gaming! And of course a lot of people (read parents) think of video games as time-wasters and they have a large influence on low grades in school, however, many psychologists disagree and say that video games have a lot of benefits and can prepare kids with mind skills that will help them in the future!

Benefits of gaming

Of course there are a lot of benefits and positive effects from video games, and here is a list of the benefits that impact your child the most:

  1. Improved cognitive function – gaming can enhance cognitive skills such as visual processing, memory, reasoning and perception. Even violent games have shown to improve the players capability of thinking in many dimensions.
  2. Quick thinking and accuracy – gaming requires quick thinking and decision making in seconds apart. Also, many games require enlarged attention skills to deal with unpredicted changes in the game.
  3. Problem solving abilities – strategic and RPG genres have shown that players develop problem solving skills much more than kids that don’t play any video games.
    I don’t have a gaming issue, I just lack the time for gaming
    I don’t have a gaming issue, I just lack the time for gaming

    “I don’t have a gaming issue, I just lack the time for gaming” is a popular quote when you just don’t have the time to resolve all of the games problems!

  4. Dexterity – eye to hand coordination is highly developed among gamers, involving using eye to hand coordination using both the keyboards and mouse, or even more complicated, a joystick with a whole bunch of buttons lined up in different order. Keeping track of speed, aim, position is no simple task!
  5. Resource management – especially when playing strategic and tycoon games, where proper resource management is a must to finish the required tasks. The player has to know what is needed and what is crucial, what resource is to be spent and more important, when!
  6. Multitasking – all games require fast thinking and dealing with many tasks at the same time. Example, while running a city, you have to gather resources, and in split second you have to raise your defenses and defend the city from a sudden attack. A players gotta play it right day and night!
  7. Memory – popular mobile games require fast memorizing of different things in order to win. Words, objects, paths, all need to fit in the players mind regardless of the situation.
  8. Mapping – using game maps develop a sense of using maps in the real world too, and teaches player how to properly navigate through them also.
  9. Improved language skills – many RPG games use an advance language, like Tolkien used when he wrote “Lord of the Rings”. A lot of these words are not commonly used in the popular culture; however, gamers do develop a much enriched vocabulary compared to non-gamers. They can only compare to true readers of genres similar to the above mentioned.
  10. Learning geography – anybody who has played any of the Assassins Creed serials would probably find their way through Istanbul, Rome, Florence, London, and many other places. This is a fact, scientists have proven it!
  11. Teamwork and cooperation – online gaming requires team work and cooperation and team planning. All team players contribute in different skills, and socialization is a big factor, because back in the days players used to write to each other, nowadays they talk directly to each other over conference calls, and plan on the go, ad-hock most of the time.
  12. Improved educational skills – games for children include learning new things in a fun manner, without the burden of test, just for the prize of fun and finishing a given task. Studies have shown that gamers to learn faster than other children!

Negative effect of gaming over youth

The negative effect usually occurs with excessive gaming and because of the games content. Games which include nudity and excessive violence can have a negative effect on your child.

  1. Aggression – many games include violence, and give choices of whether to let someone live or die in the game. Many studies have found a link between aggressive behaviors in real life due to playing violent video games. Of course, only a small percentage of gamers develop aggressive behavior in real life!
  2. Addiction – “I don’t need a life, I have many lives saved up!”
    I don’t need a life, I have many lives saved up!
    I don’t need a life, I have many lives saved up!

    Games like WOW can place you in the gaming char for a long period of time (years in most cases), and although you chat with different players, gamers can develop an anti-social behavior. Also pathological gamers are more likely to develop anxiety and insomnia, even depression cause of game failure! Usual symptoms of addictive gaming are lack of attention in real life, neglect of other thing in life, defensive attitude. If you see any of the symptoms you should consult a therapist for further action!

  3. Poor academic performance – addictive gamers are skipping classes more than a lot and can spend days not moving away from the game. This is not in all cases, because a portion of gamers to develop fast learning skill and can show enriched academic skills.
  4. Poor health – a popular gaming quote is “eat.play.sleep.repeat” and I you hear your child saying this, you should take some action.
    eat.play.sleep.repeat
    eat.play.sleep.repeat

    Addictive gamers can have weight problem due to lack of physical activity, and also they tend to have sight problems of focusing on the monitor all the time. The quote can turn in to “eat.play .eat.play” very easily, exhausting your child over time!

Of course you should not forbid your child from playing video games, but you should however set some ground rules. Always know what the game is about, hell; even playing with your kid can be a quality time spent together. Limit the gaming hours, and give them gaming hours as reward after doing their homework on time, or buy them the game they have been waiting for after a well finished semester. Taking the whole family outside to nature is always welcomed, and showing real family values and can take your kid away from the gaming world!

All images in this article are made with an  image quote maker courtesy of pixteller.com

References:

  1. https://www.raisesmartkid.com/3-to-6-years-old/4-articles/34-the-good-and-bad-effects-of-video-games
  2. https://wuwomedia.com/effects-gaming-young-people/
  3. https://www.forbes.com/sites/jordanshapiro/2014/08/27/a-surprising-new-study-on-how-video-games-impact-children/#3cf2361d7556
  4. https://techengage.com/impact-of-violent-video-games-on-youth/
  5. http://scipnebraska.com/file_download/inline/81a888e1-f65d-47a3-80d6-d5290aa4fbe7
  6. https://www.momjunction.com/articles/effects-of-video-games-on-teenagers_00352668/#gref
  7. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/mental-wealth/201609/is-your-childs-brain-video-games
  8. https://www.bartleby.com/essay/Effects-Of-Video-Games-On-Youth-FK8UXQYVJ
  9. https://www.rootsofaction.com/video-games-for-kids-more-good-than-bad-for-development/

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