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Five benefits of video games for children and adolescents

The consumption of video games is becoming increasingly popular. In recent years, it has grown so much that video games are now the number one choice for audiovisual leisure in the USA. The sector is gaining more and more advantages over its competitors. Today, the turnover of this industry is higher than the sum of the turnover of cinema and music.

 

Despite the risks involved in the excessive consumption of video games, the fear of spending too much time in front of the screens, and the consequent rejection by some parents who try to prevent children from playing them, the moderate use of video games is not only not harmful to children and adolescents, but also provides various benefits for their development.

 

1. They encourage teamwork

Although we sometimes tend to relate the use of video games with an individual activity, to the point of fearing possible social isolation when abusive use is made, Internet access from different gaming devices has expanded the possibilities of the classic multiplayer options. Every day, there are more collaborative games that we can play with our friends and other players from anywhere in the world.

 

Cooperative video games require the whole team to organize itself to achieve the same objective. All players are forced to communicate with each other, plan joint strategies, exchange points of view about the situation, and decide the best way to overcome the game's challenges. This process of cooperation and exchange must be done very quickly, and it may be necessary to reach out several times and change strategies immediately.

 

Communication and teamwork are two essential skills in any personal, academic, or professional field. The use of collaborative video games helps acquire these skills and put them into daily practice at home, at work, or school.

 

2. Improving working memory and other cognitive functions

In recent years, several studies have shown that the regular use of video games during childhood and adolescence causes changes in the brain, both structurally and functionally, improving aspects such as attention, the ability to multitask, or speed when reacting to certain situations.

 

Blog https://gearsadviser.com/ has revealed that some of the cognitive changes in the brain can occur during adulthood even if the use of video games has been abandoned, i.e., playing video games during childhood is a type of cognitive training that can have effects on our brain that appear years later, when we are adults, even if we no longer play.

 

From this study, the research group observed that the participants who regularly played video games when they were young showed higher performance in working memory tasks. This means that these people have an easier time memorizing, processing, and manipulating information in their brain (information that will help them obtain a result). At the same time, those participants who did not normally play video games were slower.

 

3. They facilitate the learning of other languages and subjects

Video games can facilitate language learning through the narration of the story, the dialogues between the characters, the game instructions, or the chats -by written message or by voice- which allow communication between players from different parts of the world.

 

On the other hand, it is possible to deal with almost any subject through video games. Educational video games diversify classroom teaching and make learning more fun and enjoyable for students. Some of them are used to learn mathematical concepts. Others deal with subjects related to natural sciences or social sciences. Museums or cultural entities have created even very specific video games.

 

4. They encourage creativity in children and adolescents

Many studies have been done on the benefits of video games. Most of them highlight that video games stimulate multiple intelligences (visual-spatial, logical-mathematical, linguistic, musical, naturalistic, kinesthetic-bodily, intrapersonal) interpersonal) and the creativity of youngsters.

 

In this sense, video games not only boost creativity indirectly through the wide variety of narrative threads and characters that children and adolescents find in the games they play and that later inspire them and help them to materialize their ideas in other formats, such as drawing, writing, music or image and video; but also because there is a wide selection of video games that give them the option of building their own story in universes ranging from specific simulators in which they can build a city, a house or an amusement park, to the infinite universe of Minecraft, which owes much of its popularity to the freedom it offers each player to enjoy the game as they wish.

 

5. They favor the development of critical thinking

Finally, we would like to highlight the role that video games can play in developing critical thinking. As with books or movies, behind the story of each video game can hide social issues, a historical context, or even an attempt to convey ideas with an ethical or philosophical component. In addition, throughout these stories, many video games force us to make decisions and invite reflection.

 

In conclusion, it is important to establish reasonable time limits regarding the consumption of video games, but also to choose them well according to their subject matter, their classification and the age of the children and adolescents, and the benefits we believe they can bring them, without forgetting, obviously, their level of fun and their function as an entertainment product.

 

On the other hand, the interest in video games can be a good gateway to the world of programming and an opportunity for young people and consumers to be creators of technology. 

Travis Johnson

author

Business analyst

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