Posted | March 4th, 2020
Are Video Games teaching us anything?
By Charleyy Vaughan – Campaign Executive
What are we learning?
If used in the right way, video games have a great deal of potential to inspire learning, whether that be in children or adults. GS:GO for example is a game that requires great attention of detail, improving the players coordination and reaction times. Players really have to focus/concentrate on the objective whilst also be tactical in order to win the game.
Video games are challenging, entertaining and some what complicated. This is applies to all genres of gaming as players are always going to run into something challenging regardless of what is being played. Games you may think are simple e.g. Super Mario Sunshine, also has its challenges. Have you ever tried to collect all the sunshines in the game? Not easy.
The larger, single player, story focused games can take a great deal of concentration and time to complete. You could be looking at 50+ hours average to complete a game. Surprisingly one of the games that takes the longest time to complete is Animal Crossing, with an average 400+ hours. Completing such time consuming games is only developing the range of the players skills even more, without them even realising.
How does this help social interaction?
Video games also help bring society closer together. Playing games is seen as a social activity (regardless of whether you’re interacting with people online or in the real world). This opens up various communications between players, whether it be working in a team or learning new techniques from each other.
The captivating power of video games lies within in their interactive nature. Gamers don’t play games to just sit around and watch, they play for fun and entertainment. Players participate in the action of the game, as well as the problem solving that comes within the games. This translates into improved day-to-day social interaction with peers. Some games, like the recent release of Dreams on PS4, allow players to use their imagination and create various games or levels within games. This allows so much more creative possibilities for players of all ages.
Are the children learning?
Video games are also enhancing players reading skills. In the game Stardew Valley for example, players are set as virtual farmers. Over the course of the game you can upgrade your house, create friendships with the towns folk and even build your own farm. Whilst in play, players develop conversations between the characters, read the mail and talk to the animals they are raising. Incorporating reading into an activity that large numbers of kids do enjoy, like video games, it is subconsciously improving their reading skill. Due to players interested in the game, they may often then end up reading at a level that might be way above them.
What if in depth computer technology / game development was part of the learning experience in schools? Especially in schools where the children are fairly young. Would this be able to change all the stigma that is based around video games?
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