My wife is 22 weeks pregnant right now with our little baby girl. I mentioned to my wife when we first found out she was pregnant that I can’t wait for our daughter to get old enough for me to play video games with her. My wife said that she doesn’t want our kid to play video games because games are bad for kids and a waste of time.
Ok, now I get why people think this. I’ve heard this my whole life. But being an avid gamer since I was just a little kid, I know differently. I feel like games have benefited me greatly. I’ve always believed that my eye-hand coordination and reading skills have been enhanced by playing games. Games are also a great way for me to wind down, relax and recharge.
People can make all the assumptions they want, but recent studies are showing that games are great for both kids and adults in many ways.
In older adults, scientists at the University of California have found that playing video games can increase cognitive function and can treat neurological disorders. The researchers even believe that video games might be on par with prescription medications.
Just 15 minutes ago, my local news station aired a short story about Dr. George Sachs treating young kids with ADHD with video games. They used strategy-based games in the study and found that the volunteers showed better speed and accuracy on cognitive tests. That’s big news.
I don’t know how beneficial all games are for kids, but you’re probably safe giving your kids educational games or games that promote critical thinking. My favorite games as a kid were RPG’s which is what I think helped my reading skills develop so strongly. These are the kinds of games I plan to play with my daughter and I’m glad to know that gaming can be so beneficial in cognitive development.