Powered by
istock Photo/Sports Mom Illustration

The Benefits of Video Gaming

Millions of American kids are playing video games. Parents are worried about the impact this alluring hobby has on their children But if you have a good agreement with your kids about time management and gaming, it can be a good thing. Balance is key. There are several benefits to playing video games. In fact, kids who do well on these competition games tend to score higher on IQ tests.

Playing video games improves coordination. To play, kids have to coordinate their senses to make a move using their ears, eyes and body.

Most of these games contain conflicts or problems that have to be solved. Players must evaluate the environment and calculate the next step. A lot of the times, these decisions have to be made in a split second. Solving these online problems quickly and confidently can be helpful when it comes to making real life decisions.

Gamers have to remember the rules of the game and remember what worked to help them advance in earlier games, thus playing helps with memory.

Playing helps kids focus and pay attention. To win, a player must totally take in all that’s going on. Learning that skill could help them in the classroom with completing tasks and understanding time management. In fact, many teachers are incorporating educational video games to assist with a specified curriculum.

Playing video games can help a player learn to multitask. In games like Minecraft, Call of Duty or Fortnite, players must watch their movements, look for bad guys and have strategies for weapons. It’s important to do your research though to see what games are age appropriate for your kids.

Most older kids are expanding their experience and playing online with friends. They form alliances and negotiate plans while sharing success and sometimes failure. My son plays with his teammates from hockey and also friends from school. In fact. the two groups have crossed over and they play together as well. I believe gaming with other players on a sports team helps to deepen relationships and inspires strategies that can be instituted during a game.

Gaming is fun for kids or they wouldn’t do it. It takes dedication, patience and practice to be good at it and those habits can help with a future career or life in general. Establish healthy boundaries when it comes to gaming. Set a timer if you need to, or even take the cord from the console or shut down the Wifi if it becomes too much. For older kids, encourage them to have an extracurricular activity at school that motivates them to focus on things not gaming related.