Online Gaming and Connected Play
As more and more people are using the internet, online gaming has changed and evolved into a popular culture. Especially with the younger generation, it has continuously evolved into something else. With that comes responsibility though. Making sure that if online gaming is attracting younger audiences, that we set a safe environment for them.
The article titled “Growth, Grit, and Gaming: Video Games in Education,” discusses how “students feel a sense of accomplishment when they reach goals, and are motivated to endlessly engage in video games as they advance, learn, and achieve in the program.” Games have set rules and missions that players need to follow in order to get to the next level. With that, I believe that the benefits of gaining certain skills can be formed from engaging in online gaming. Social connections, problem solving, and critical thinking are just a few of the skills that come into mind when I think of skills that are developed through gaming. This is a different form of learning and is connected play.
With this, I want to go back on how important it is that parents or teachers establish a support system with online gaming. There are debates of how too much engaging online can lead to addiction or how violent gaming can influence a child to do violent actions in real life. The first tip I would suggest to parents or teachers is making sure to limit time spent online. I think that this is vital for any type of screen time as it can cause negative effects on a child’s development and overall well being. The second tip I would suggest in healthy gaming is understanding what and why your child likes to play a certain game(s). Talking to your child about why they enjoy this activity can make you understand and support them in issues they may be facing. It also creates an avenue of healthy communication. The last tip I would suggest would be encouraging physical activity. Addiction is real, and there are so many problems that come with gaming too much physically. Encouraging to go outside together or having an activity planned out can help with having a healthy balance with online gaming.
Personally, I don’t engage in video games or online games as much as others, but a game that has been a staple in my life for years now is connect four. I grew up with this board game and I have the app downloaded on my phone. I play it when I am bored or just want to pick at my brain. This app allows me to play with other people online or with a computer so it is engaging that way. This has allowed me to really work on my problem solving, basic math, and strategic skills. I am having fun, but I am also engaging in connected play.