Video Games for Education

1.2 billion people play video games worldwide. This is a rather significant portion of the population and if we ignore the negative consequences for the moment, which include addictive qualities and deprioritizing of school work, we can delve into the beneficial correlations between gaming and education.

College Student Journal, June 2012 edition, Page 376-387

Video games are one of the most popular means of entertainment for kids. However, many parents to keep their children away from video games as playing games may hamper the learning and mental growth of the children. Contrary to the popular belief, video games, instead of hampering the learning process, can actually boost it. Research published by the American Psychological Association concluded that video games can enhance the learning, health, and social skills of your children.

When students engage in video game play, they experience the world in a new way. They learn to work collaboratively and to solve problems through the highly complex mental challenges that games provide. They also develop resources and skills that transfer to future learning opportunities.

The lead author of the research, Isabela Granic said that they are not completely dismissing the adverse effects, which gaming can leave on children, which include depression, aggression, and addiction. However, she believes that a neutral and balanced perspective is required to understand the effects and impact of video games on the development of a child.

The 21st-century learner is expected to be a critical thinker, make informed judgments, be a creative problem solver, communicate and collaborate with others, use information in innovative ways, and take responsibility for himself and others. Gaming provides the avenue for all of these skills to be in play.

Shooter games are often considered as violent; hence, many parents do not allow their children to play such games. As per a study, playing such games improves the capability of a child to observe objects in three dimensions. Researchers believe that such skills are necessary for a child for their career development. Other games including role-playing or puzzles do not have such effect on the children, which shooter games have.

Playing video games is often termed to be as a lazy activity by parents for their children. However, as a matter of fact, these games can actually enhance their cognitive skills, which may include reasoning, perception, and sharp memory.  Another benefit that is associated with playing video games for children is the problem-solving skills they develop. A study was published in 2003, in which it was stated that students who indulge in role-playing games have shown improvement in their grades the following year. They have also depicted greater problem-solving skills as compared to other students in the class.

The crux of the story is that video games can be used as a tool for educating children. Philosophy and linguistics degree holder from Stanford and professor of literacy studies at Arizona State University, James Gee, states that video games allow the children to be collectively intelligent. She believes that human minds are similar to plug-and-devices, which cannot be used alone. Using them in networks enhances their intelligence and can have a great effect on their learning skills. She further believes that games can do for a kid, which alone IQ score cannot do. The experts stress on the fact that success is acquired with patience and discipline, which can be learned from gaming in a much more effective way as compared to the traditional classroom context.

Despite the enormous benefits of video games mentioned this piece of writing, it is suggested for the parents to keep a tab on their children when they are playing video games. They should define a time limit, during which their children should play the games as the excess of playing these game pose several unhealthy effects on their bodies.

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