article, will cause our children to become depressed and anxiety ridden.
Yesterday, the little school newsletter that comes home with my kids to remind me about the next fundraiser or chorus recital also included a bit from our guidance counselor on the dangers of video games. She wrote a paragraph about how she thinks it all comes down to moderation, but then included a big chunk of the Reuters article on all the supposed negative effects of video gaming. My kids play a lot of video games. One child read this bit of the newsletter and asked me if the games they play are bad. I told my daughter that no, they are most certainly not bad and are not hurting them. She was happy with this answer and bounced into the living room to go play on the Xbox. And I was perfectly fine with her and her sister playing the latest little puzzle game they had discovered earlier this week. Why? Because I think that video games are good for them and actually improve their lives.
Yes, I like that my kids love video games because I see the value in the games they play. They're young, so I'm not letting them play GTA 4 but when they work together to get to the next level of a puzzle game, or have to find a way to help each other while playing Lego Star Wars, they are developing important social skills. They learn to cooperate. They learn to be kind and help each other. They learn the value of being a good sport and not stomping away in a huff when they lose. They learn to solve problems in creative ways and not give up if their first idea doesnt' work. Playing is a social experience for them and they are learning through every minute of that play. Yet, nowhere in my school newsletter did they choose to mention any of the benefits that can be gained from video games.
I understand that playing video games all day, every day might not be the best choice for children. It's not the best choice for adults either. But to ignore the benefits of video games and focus only on the negatives is to deprive kids of a potentially beneficial outlet. I love video games and couldn't be happier that my kids do, too.