Posts Tagged ‘games’

Today’s short guest-post comes from Tim McMann, a video-game blogger on t’Internet. For another great article on video game culture, Tim recommends visiting www.fearlessgamer.com. Enjoy! 

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Video games and the gamers that play them often have a bad rap when it comes to the educational value, or lack thereof, that video games are thought to offer. There are actually many compelling reasons though that contradict the negative aspects of video gaming and actually show how video games can make you smarter, increase your cognitive abilities and help your overall problem solving abilities. Check out the list below of the seven ways that video games can make you smarter in order to arm yourself the next time that mom tells you it is time to turn off the console and hit your homework!

1. Video Games Force You to Problem Solve

One of video games’ primary tasks typically involves using your intellect in order to solve a problem that is placed in front of you. Whether that means you need to take out an entire army’s enemy brigade with your one well-armed solider or you need to score a touchdown on the vaunted Carolina Panthers’ defense, video games force you to think and come up with creative solutions to master the game.

2. Video Games Teach History

When you play a video game, you are often drawn back into a period of time that you may have known next to nothing about prior to picking up the controller. Sometimes a video game will have you playing alongside knights in The Crusades and other times they can place you in the trenches of World War II. Even the staunchest history buff cannot argue that there is some educational value from participating in an interactive history lesson!

3. Video Games Teach Teamwork

Ever since we are little, we have been taught the importance of teamwork and video games can reinforce this concept almost as well as sports. When you and your three closest friends are online taking on a level of your favorite game, there is strategy involved and roles are often assigned to ensure that all flanks are covered. If one team member does not pull their weight, the value of teamwork is quickly discovered and a valuable lesson is learned.

4. Video Games Are Great for Hand-Eye Coordination

Think fast and hit that 95 mile per hour fastball! Fast-paced and action-packed games enhance peoples’ ability to act without even looking at their hands. This is important in many real life situations.

5. Video Games Force Quick Action

Need to make a decision in a hurry and you are not sure how to act? If so, you are most likely dead in your game since you have to think on your feet. Video games are a great help for improvisation skills.

6. Video Games Require Communication

With the advent of online, multi-player action, gamers must interact with each other much more than was previously required. This increase in communication makes you more conversant and is a clear educational benefit.

7. Video Games Keep You Focused

When you play video games, you are able to focus your thoughts and actions onto a single task. This skill can carry over to educational activities that require this focused energy and singular attention to specific details to master a skill or concept.

Remember that gaming is not only fun, but educational when you stop and think about all that it can teach!

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So now you don’t have to feel guilty about spending hours and hours striving to get 100% completion on all those games you got for Christmas (those Riddler datapacks will be the death of me…)! I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and I look forward to writing some new (and sometimes exciting) blog posts as we hit 2014!

Tom