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Growth Parenting Teens

It’s National Video Game Day! Play Video Games with Your Teens

video game day

For all the gamers out there, today is National Video Game Day! Video games have gotten a bad rep in the last few years.  Video Game addiction has just been added to as a mental health issue.  This is something that parents should be aware of and monitor.  However, the pros of playing video games outweigh the cons.  This isn’t just for your kids.  It is for you as well!

Improve Problem-Solving Skills

For teenagers, playing video games help improve problem-solving skills. This is especially true if they are playing role-playing games with puzzles.  An additional benefit is that creativity is also enhanced.  My son actually built his own PC and spent hours going to the store and building it.  It gave him the motivation to do something other than playing or begging me to pay for an expensive gaming computer.

Help Motor Skills

Playing video games helps with motor skills like hand-eye coordination. It’s one of the reasons that they are encouraging senior citizens to play them.  I have seen in my kids how it has helped them with their motor skills.  I can’t really tell for me, but I do have good reflexes. ? In the journal Human Movement Science, Toronto researchers said:

“The researchers say that the ability to efficiently learn sensorimotor skills are in high demand, particularly in certain careers where precision is needed, such as surgery. The hand-eye coordination that is enhanced by gaming can also help make everyday tasks such as driving and typing more efficient.”

Bonding Time

Video games are a great way to bond with your kids. When I was young, my sisters and I were huge gamers.  I did play Atari with my older sister when I was a kid, but it wasn’t until my younger sister and I got the Nintendo that my love for video games was complete.  We play Mario Bros, the Legend of Zelda, Marble Madness, etc. When my mom got the first family computer (remember Windows 3.1?), we played games on there.  Games like Oregon Trail, Frogger, Donkey Kong, Price is Right, Jeopardy, and the list keeps going.

When my younger sister and I got our first PlayStation, we would play the same games over and over again because my mom refused to keep buying games for us (It isn’t easy as it is now to get discounted or used games).  Games like Resident Evil 2, Resident Evil 3, Tales of Destiny, Final Fantasy VII, Parasite Eve, Metal Gear Solid, Syphon Filter….

My younger sister would play the Xbox with the kids in the family, and when she passed away, they remember all the times she beat them mercilessly on the Halo games. Cebastian said that the love of playing video games came from her. My sister was a huge gamer, and she was good at it.  I always told her that she was like the kid in “The Wizard” and should pursue playing in game tournaments. We would play Crash Bandicoot and Spyro with our niece and nephew when they would come over.

After that, I stopped playing for a bit because I had my babies and didn’t have time to play video games anymore.  It wasn’t until my son got his Xbox 360 that I started playing again. One time the kids brought Tomb Raider back from their dad’s house.  My daughter was playing and got stuck in a part.  She asked if I could help her.  I didn’t stop helping until we beat the game. It brought back the desire to play again. 

Since then, I have played numerous games on Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.  Recently, they remastered Resident Evil 2, and it was nice playing the game with my son while memories of when my sister and I would play. My son and I spend time reading the Game Informer magazine and talking about the upcoming games.  I ask him questions (even if I already know the answer) so we can converse.

My daughter and I also bond playing video games.  We have played several games together and are already making plans to play upcoming video games. There was one time that we went to visit my niece and nephew and spent the day playing “Ratatouille.” Side note: They make supposed kid games harder than more mature games.  That game was damn hard.  Same as Donkey Kong and Epic Mickey.

I even took them to a museum exhibit on Video Games so that they could appreciate the art and creativity that goes into making them. Who knows? Maybe one day they will be part of a team that creates an amazing video game in the future.

Even if you don’t like playing video games, you should watch your kids play it and talk to them about it.  They will appreciate it.

Happy Video Game Day everyone! Tell me what games you are playing now or plan to the in near future.

national video game day play video games with your teens
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