What are the pros and cons of letting children play video games?

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  1. SimeyC profile image89
    SimeyCposted 11 years ago

    What are the pros and cons of letting children play video games?

    Depending on the expert you listen to Video Games can be good or bad. What are the pros and cons of letting children play video games? What are the parents responsibilities? Should the parent check out the game fully before allowing their child to play or should they trust the ratings of the game?

  2. colpolbear profile image91
    colpolbearposted 11 years ago

    I actually made a hub about many educational pros to letting kids play video games.  You might want to check it out.  As far as parental responsibilities, the parents should check out the games themselves.  Sometimes ratings are placed for many aspects that certain parents might not actually care about, like violence as apposed to sex.

  3. profile image0
    internationalearnposted 11 years ago

    I think games are good for kids... Well naturally since I have played a lot of games as a kid. Recent study even confirmed that violence in games does not have any effect on the child (well bad dreams maybe) in psychological sense - it wont make the kid violent - not that you should encourage your kid to play such games but if he or she does it is not the end of the world. When I say violence I do not mean games that have "gore" scenes because that is certainly something they should not play. But if they enjoy a shooter so something that has hacking and slashing involved it can pass.

    It depends on the age too. Toddlers usually do not have specific desires for games so whatever you will provide them will please them - so yeah educational games or simulation games (pets). And as for toddlers go, yeah I would go with checking the game, think checking the ratings (and maybe searching a review or two) would be just fine.

    Later on when kids have wishes to have a specific game I think you should somewhat comply to their wishes (not meaning buy them everything they desire) but forbidding something usually only strengthens the wish.

    My parents never checked what games I played as a kid but they did watch me play it. I played Diablo, Dungeon Keeper and a tons of other games that were considered dark and violent in primary school. In my opinion it is not what kid of games the child plays but how he or she reacts to it. If you let the child play and observe the child you - and he or she reacts to the game in a way you would not want to (shows aggressive behaviour or something) you will at least know it is time to act - keeping in mind this behaviour was not caused by the game but revealed by the game.

    As for the cons and pros. I guess a negative side can be that the child can become addicted to games but this only happens if parents don't have the control of the time spent playing games.

    Pros: many imo - for me personally it was certainly that I could speak english (not a native english speaker naturally) way before many from my generation and since I played some german games I did have a somewhat good understanding of german. That are the pros that I am aware of.

    Just my opinion :smile

  4. Electro-Denizen profile image82
    Electro-Denizenposted 11 years ago


    On the one hand games have been shown to improve mental dexterity and so on...

    ...while on the other, studies have shown that children or school kids who play violent video games lose social empathy.

    The study:
    a group of children played nice games, and another shoot 'em ups with gore and violence, and ALL of the kids of who played the violent game totally failed social empathy tests that had been written into the interviews that followed the gaming.

    While they were being questioned, the interviewer 'accidentally' dropped his pen onto the floor next to them: all the former group picked up his pen for him, ALL of the children who played the violent game had become de-sensitized during game-play and felt no need to pick up his pen for him, even though it was the kind and socially aware thing to do.

    Frightening result really.

  5. JohnGreasyGamer profile image77
    JohnGreasyGamerposted 11 years ago

    Pros: While I don't entirely think children are learning much from video games other than how to be anti-social, I think it depends wholly on the environment. Are they online with a friend with strangers, perhaps just playing with a friend, or alone? What about those fitness games that barely work, how many hours are our children playing the game for? Also think what's making them enjoy it - is there something you don't know about but it may cause major concern?

    Cons: If someone said to be "video games cause children to be violent", I'd laugh out loud, I really would. The real cause is bad parenting and stupid kids. Who in the Hell would serve a 12 year old a 18-rated game unless it's making the store big bucks (Ha! Fat chance....)? If anything, I think parents need to be re-educated (not just educated, as THAT went out the window after 1995) about what to get, and what NOT to get.

  6. adjkp25 profile image91
    adjkp25posted 11 years ago

    I think playing video games can be good but only in moderation.  Allowing your children to play for as long as they want to is not a good idea in my opinion.  We have time limits for both of our kids on the video game system.

    I feel that most parents can figure out if a game is OK or not by looking at it or researching it a little bit.  If it is obviously a military shooting game it probably is not a good idea for a little child to play it.

  7. profile image0
    Old Empresarioposted 11 years ago

    I think they are a waste of time. It is possible they could unlock a child's imagination to some extent, but let's face it--these things do not make a child more intellectual, more athletic, or more interesting.

  8. moiragallaga profile image77
    moiragallagaposted 11 years ago

    One of the pros of letting children play video games is if you the parent also plays video games, then it is an opportunity to bond with your child. My husband and I would play a hack and slash video game with our young kid on coop mode, it was part of family time. It is also a fine release and diversion for the child, as long as supervised appropriately and only indulged in moderately.

    The con of course is if video game playing of children aren't supervised and monitored appropriately, it can be too much of a distraction that could affect studies,  development of social skills and physical fitness.

    As for violence and violent behavior, if it is properly contextualized and discussed with them, I don't think children will be negatively affected. Never underestimate your child's ability to understand or his/her intelligence. Remember, you may forbid them to play violent games or games with sexual content or references, but you can't watch over them 24/7 and children are naturally very curious. best to take every opportunity to discuss these matters with them whenever you can.

  9. RetroBrothers profile image81
    RetroBrothersposted 11 years ago

    Hmmm - now that is a very good question.

    I think that playing computer games has positve benefits if 'used' correctly.

    I have been an avid gamer since the good old 8-bit days - and playing a good mix of games can increase your hand to eye co-ordination a lot. Arcade style games can actually increase your reflex speed - and of course puzzle, logic and adventure games make you 'work your mind' to solve riddles, puzzles and conundrums.

    'Active' gaming can be good too as you are up and about - and 'games' such as Wii Fit can be of great benefit

    Too much solitary gaming though (I feel) impacts a childs social skills-and sitting for hour after hour each day (if your only using your thumbs and fingers!) is hardly keeping you active.

    So - for me, gaming in moderation can be greatly beneficial but like pretty much anything else, you can have too much of a good thing.

  10. cicsomum profile image60
    cicsomumposted 11 years ago

    Depends on games, there are lots of educational and brain training games on web.

  11. NiaLee profile image61
    NiaLeeposted 11 years ago

    learn how to use tools on the computer
    spend time busy
    learning how to cope with loosing

    lack of educative material in video games
    high stress level of players
    child getting lost in the virtual world and paying less interest to reality
    getting used to fantasy or violence and transferring them in reality

  12. YvetteParker profile image60
    YvetteParkerposted 11 years ago

    Pros are for recreational and entertainment value. Playing games help with hand-eye coordination and to devlop skills to navigate and think quickly.

    Cons are letting children play inappropriate games and letting them spend too much time on the games. Making video games a child's primary outlet for spending their leisure time is also a con as there is little physical activity involved in most video game systems.

    Parents should first be aware of the content of the games their children are playing and the rating of the games.

    Parents should also set boundaries concerning how much time will be spent playing and how many days of the week children are allowed to play.

  13. mikejhca profile image92
    mikejhcaposted 11 years ago

    Playing video games can be good for your mind.  The games can challenge the player mentally.  Most of the games I played as a kid and as an adult required a lot of thought.  The main con would be that If a child or adult plays them too often it could lead to a lack of exercise.  That would be bad for their health.  Kids should exercise for close to an hour everyday.

    There are also so games that I would consider bad for a child's mental health.  I think parents should limit the amount of time a child plays video games and they should check out the games their kids play.  I have seen kids playing games that were a bad influence on them and you may not agree with the ratings of the game.

    Even if the game has nothing that would be considered bad it might not have anything good.

  14. Eight8Consulting profile image58
    Eight8Consultingposted 11 years ago

    I think its good that parents check the game themselves and than allow their children to play it, moreover video games should not consume all holidays of your child you have to balance it no doubt its better to play a video game rather than sit with your children and watch tv

  15. Hawkstryker profile image82
    Hawkstrykerposted 11 years ago

    After much looking around, I've cut it down to these:


    Following instructions
    Problem solving and logic
    Hand-eye coordination, fine motor and spatial skills
    Multitasking (simultaneous tracking of many shifting variables and managing multiple objectives)
    Resource management and logistics
    Quick thinking (making fast analysis and decisions)
    Strategy and anticipation
    Developing reading and math skills
    Pattern recognition
    Estimating skills
    Inductive reasoning and hypothesis testing
    Reasoned judgments
    Teamwork and cooperation when played with others
    Simulation, real world skills


    Social isolation
    Lack of imaginative thinking and creativity
    Wrong values, violent behavior, vengeance and aggression are rewarded
    Confusion with reality versus fantasy
    Academic achievement may be negatively related to over-all time spent playing
    Risk of health issues such as obesity, video-induced seizures, and postural, muscular and skeletal disorders such as tendonitis, nerve compression, and carpal tunnel syndrome
    Inappropriate language and behavior from other people interacting in the game, making your child vulnerable to online dangers

    I should probably have just wrote a hub!

  16. profile image28
    Ldnwicklesscandleposted 11 years ago

    well rotting their brain is a definite con. LOL

  17. DavyCrockett profile image64
    DavyCrockettposted 11 years ago

    All the time spent playing video games could be spent interacting with people and creating something awesome. The only pro for video games is explained in one of my hubs.

  18. pfenby profile image60
    pfenbyposted 11 years ago

    Apparently playing video games can be good for hand eye co-ordination, that's what I've heard so that sounds like it would be a pro. A con on the other hand would possibly be the amount of time spent playing it.

    In regards to the Parents responsibilities they should play it first to make sure it is age appropriate for their child & spend time with them from time to time as a way to connect with their child.

  19. kayyluh profile image64
    kayyluhposted 11 years ago

    Well I have a pro: According to many scientists and doctors the children who play video games and read nursery rhymes turn out to be very smart. The only bad things are is they won't do there homework!

  20. profile image0
    susanm23bposted 11 years ago

    Children need a balance of different kinds of activities.  Video games are good because they practice hand-eye coordination and dexterity.  Video games are bad if they are the ONLY things kids do in their free time. 

    Parents are responsible for monitoring everything children participate in.  I use the ratings in games as guidelines, but also want to check the games out myself.  Although I know that ratings are based upon specific criteria, there is some subjectivity in the ratings, and I want to make my own determinations about suitability for my children.

  21. smzclark profile image60
    smzclarkposted 11 years ago

    pros: Peace for Parents and less mess made during play

    cons: No worse way to socialise and educate a child!

  22. profile image0
    lisasuniquevoiceposted 8 years ago

    The cons of playing video games comes from the fact that most are played in the dark bedrooms of today's teenagers. Usually they're alone in there. That's isolation, and it's not good. When they gather together for little tournaments and the like it's better for them socially. The pros of video games include that they do fill idle hours of the day. They kept my son out of trouble along with some soccer and basketball.

  23. DGtal Montage profile image92
    DGtal Montageposted 6 years ago

    Gaming does increase mental agility but only if a kid is not provided with enough interaction with other kids. However, the cons are far greater. It begins with something juvenile and may end up with terrible results. For instance, the blue whale challenge that has devastated so many families.


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