Are Video Games Hurting My Child?

From The Safety Report

What may seem to be a simple question with an even simpler answer may be much more complex. While some experts opine that a child’s excessive video game playing can have a negative impact, it is also important to note that much research has been done on the social, emotional, mental and physical benefits of such gaming. So, moms and dads, listen up; the results of this research may surprise you.Apparently, video games have considerable real-world benefits. Would you believe that many scientists and psychologists find that many video games teach kids high-level thinking skills? Since these video games create interaction with other gamers, they can actually help teach social skills, such as leadership, teambuilding and delegating responsibility.

Teamwork and cooperation with other online players encourage gamers to not only make the most of their individual skills, but also to use those skills in a way that contributes to the team. These interactive game types may also teach listening skills as kids seek out and listen to the ideas of others while formulating a plan to reach common goals.

According to Daphne Bavelier, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at the University of Geneva, video games actually help gamers focus better and improve multi-tasking skills. Bavelier’s research also found that gamers’ data-tracking abilities exceed those of non-gamers; a gamer can quickly parse through mass amounts of information to identify specific data. The most telling aspect of her research was the positive changes in a gamer’s brain.

Our world has rapidly become high-tech and sophisticated; the use of video games is one helpful way to introduce kids to computer technology, social networking and media, and global connectivity through the Internet.

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