The mandatory quarantine is taking a toll on everyone, especially parents. With kids staying home 24/7, the stress brought by homeschooling, housework, and their own professional life is probably at its max.
To keep their children away from boredom (not to mention, all-day tantrums, drawing on walls and furniture, getting naughty during zoom meetings, etc) and prevent them from going outside, most parents choose to invest in different activities that can be done inside the safety of their homes.
They’ve done it all, from learning baking to gardening to backyard camping, even turning their attention to the “not so good” option of playing video games.
The gaming industry even showed an increase in both revenue and attentiveness since coronavirus-related restrictions took a toll. – WashingtonPost
While some parents frowned upon video games, there are a lot of positive impacts when it comes to children’s development.
1. Introduction to Computer Technology and Fostering Social Connections
We are in an era of high-tech computer technology and creating social connections.
Understanding computer parts and their functions, as well as an introduction to basic computer skills and the rules for safe internet usage, are an essential part of today’s society.
On the other hand, although, face-to-face interactions are currently out of the question, social connections could still be fostered through online video games. Online gamers build strong friendships and relationships based on common interests especially for those who live in the same area.
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2. Creativity and Problem Solving Skills
Playing video games is like working in a company with a disagreeable boss, an annoying coworker, fast approaching deadlines, a promotion you’ve been dying to get, and an error on an important contract you just submitted on a Friday an hour before office hours end. And you have to deal with it all at once.
Planning, proper management, and task delegation, quick and flexible thinking to calculate dependent parameters are required in a fast-paced, highly pressurized environment where one mistake can be a dead end. The same goes for fast-paced games that function in real-time.
Challenges in video games also bring out the creativity in a child. Mind games, puzzles, virtual cities, and mystery-themed games encourage them to find solutions creatively.
3. Visual-spatial and Better Cognitive Functioning
A lot of games nowadays are set in a virtual reality environment that offers different scenarios. These games simulate vision, hearing, and sometimes touch.
3D graphics provide realism that makes children more immersed in the game. The functionality and design replicate the real-world mechanism that improves the development of children’s visual-spatial skills and hand-eye coordination.
Also, with the help of game consoles and controllers the children’s develop muscle memory which is an essential part of their daily lives.
4. Cooperation and Team Play
Multiplayer games encourage children to cooperate with their teammates; usually from different parts of the world. With varying cultures, it encourages players to develop new strategies and explore the world outside their homes. It builds the skills required to work together to complete and solve the game and also prepares them for real-world team play.
5. Opens Future Career Paths
ESports is increasingly becoming popular. On average, professional gamers earn between $1,000 to $5000. Richard Tyler Blevins, alias Ninja, American video game streamer, and professional gamer earned $17 million, 2019.
Joining a team of professional video gamers or getting sponsors is much harder than getting hired for a desk job, children also develop other interests which influence career options such as programming, game development, marketing, voice acting, event planning ,and coordinating become viable options.
These are just some of the positive impacts of playing video games. Of course, there are also disadvantages and as parents, it is always up to you on how much control you want to give your kids when it comes to playing video games.