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Video Games and Kids - Good or Bad?

Sep 8, 2008
Many American children spend a large amount of their time playing video games. As a parent, you may be confused as to whether these games are beneficial or not. That question is still up in the air. The opponents of the video game craze have made solid arguments against them, while the supporters have pointed out the benefits that these games can give to children.

The opponents to the use of video games have pointed out the negative effects that these devices can have on youngsters. It is true that in homes that have these games available, children seem to spend much more time in front of the television. In an age where childhood obesity is becoming a major problem, it might be a good idea to get these children outside for more exercise.

These critics also point out the design of the games themselves. When playing with these devices, in most situations it is every man for himself, with two people usually trying to eliminate each other. It is not an exercise in which children can learn to work together as a team and can lead some youngsters to be severely lacking in their compromising skills. Many of today's games are also violent in nature, which according to some experts can lead children to act more aggressively towards each other in real life.

Supporters of video games point out that many of these games can actually improve a child's hand and eye coordination. They also point out that some of the newer video games can give a child a good workout in the comfort of their own living room. Many of the games, especially ones that are developed for younger children, are actually very educational and can teach them the basics that they will need to know to learn reading, writing, and arithmetic.

As a parent, you should keep in mind that the playing of video games can have its benefits if it is kept within reason. Limiting the amount of time that your child spends in front of the television is a good place to start. You should also check out any games that your child rents or buys to ensure that they are age appropriate.

Recently, the manufacturers of these video products have installed their own rating system so that parents can tell if a game is too mature or violent for their children. If you are unfamiliar with this system, it is located on the outside of the video box and consists of different letters. The letters EC stand for Early Childhood and these games are appropriate for anyone age three and older. Games that are rated E are for Everyone and are appropriate for anyone age six and older. These games may contain some mild language, minimal violence, and comic mischief.

For older children, a game that is rated T is for Teens and is appropriate for those who are over thirteen. These games may contain strong language, suggestive themes, and violence. An M rating stands for Mature and is intended for people who are over the age of seventeen. These games may contain strong language, intense violence, and even sexual themes.

An AO rating stands for Adults Only and contain graphic depictions of sex and/or violence. These games are intended for people over the age of eighteen and should not be played by younger children.

Playing video games has its advantages and disadvantages. By limiting the amount of time that your child sits in front of the television and checking the ratings on the games that they are playing, you can ensure that they have their play time as well as being able to participate in other activities as well.
About the Author
Find helpful and creative ideas for parents and grandparents while you shop our affordable kids furniture. For more information, visit this article on wooden toy boxes.
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