Why It’s Okay To Let Your Children Play Video Games
There are all kinds of myths that are perpetuated around kids and video games.
Games will rot your children's brains.
Games will corrupt your children's innocence.
Games will ruin your children's social life.
If you were to listen to every scare story in the media, you would be worried about letting your children near a games console or any smart device.
Now, we aren't saying there is no truth to the stories that circulate (although we don't think games do rot children's brains), but we shouldn't be too alarmist.
We can place limits on screen time to ensure our children don't spend all of their time in their bedrooms. We can monitor the games they play to ensure they don't play anything that isn't suitable for their age. And we can encourage our children to do other things with their time, such as hanging out with friends, trying new sports and, dare we say it, perhaps pick up a book from time to time.
As parents, we need to be responsible. But as parents, we also need to let our children play video games if that is what they are into. So, no matter what the media would have you believe, and no matter what other parents might think, know that it's okay to let them play on their phones or consoles. These are the reasons why.
#1: Video games require brainpower
Okay, so there are some video games that don't require a lot of thought. However, there are many that do, including the world-building behemoth that is Minecraft, a popular PC and console title that is now one of the best VR games for Android too.
This is a real head-scratcher of a title and one that requires children to think, plan, and use their creative talents. There are many similar titles on the market, although going beyond world-building, there are many sports, adventure, and puzzle titles that also require thought and concentration.
In short, your kids might well become cleverer after playing video games, and there is evidence to prove it if you want to prove it to those moms who disagree.
#2: Video games are great stress-relievers
Think back to your childhood days. They probably weren't as stress-free as you remember, as in some ways, they were probably as stressful as the days you sometimes experience as an adult. Largely thanks to the pressures of school, with peer pressure, tests and exams, and bothersome teachers, many of us suffered from stress as kids, and the same will be true of your children.
They probably need a little bit of stress-relief to calm their nerves and to distract them from their worries after school, so giving them the opportunity to de-stress on their favorite games should be considered reasonable. Heck, you might want to pick up a game pad from time to time as well, especially when life starts to get stressful for you.
#3: Video games offer social opportunities
Gone are the days when video games were considered antisocial. Today, our children can play games online with their friends, interact with other gamers on forums and YouTube channels, and sit with their mates and siblings while playing offline party games.
Of course, when it comes to online gaming, you do need to warn your children of stranger danger. However, for the most part, you have little to worry about, especially when it comes to fears of your children becoming isolated. And besides, you can also get involved with the games your children are playing, as we discuss in the point we raise below.
#4: Video games offer opportunities for bonding
Okay, so you might struggle to bond with your children when they're solely engrossed in their video games.Other than the occasional grunt, communication will be limited. However, there are games you can play together, so you can join in on the fun, and have a hobby to share and talk about with your children.
Check out the titles in the linked list for a few examples. And even those titles that aren't multiplayer-based can be used for bonding. If you play the same games in your own time, you can share ideas and thoughts about them with your kids.
You can also talk to your children about the games they play, and show an interest in what your children have to say when they discuss them with you. So, don't complain that your children don't spend enough time with you. Follow our suggestions, and add in a few video games on family games night in place of those board games that you enjoy playing with your children.
#5: Video games can build teamwork
Many video games allow for cooperative play, so it's not just your child standing alone battling a horde of aliens or trying to build something alone. Shared interaction is needed, and for your child to succeed with the goals the game has set them, they will need to talk and listen to the people they are playing beside.
This is a fun way to learn the intricacies of teamwork and playing nicely with others, and your children will benefit from the skills they learned when playing sports at school and engaging in classroom projects with others.
#6: Video games are fun
Finally, this is a no-brainer of a suggestion. Video games are fun, and all children need something in their lives to boost their happiness levels.
Games can give them a sense of achievement, especially when they have completed a difficult level. Games can give your children a sense of satisfaction, especially when they become engrossed in the happenings on screen. And games can make your children laugh, especially when they are playing online with others.
So, while you should also encourage your children to do other things that offer similar levels of enjoyment, there is no harm in letting your children find happiness in the video game worlds they are engaging with on the screen.
So, what do you think? Do you agree that it's okay to let children play video games? Leave us a comment below with your thoughts.