Why We Should Focus On Learning through Games
Video games have been having some bad rap, due to the number of adult themes, children getting addicted, and the financial strain they put on the family budget. However, for all of their flaws, games of all types can be very beneficial in the development of a young mind. This article isn’t limited to video games alone. Rather, it includes board games, games you play outside and games to play on a rainy day.
One of the first, and most important, qualities of games, in general, is that they improve a child’s problem-solving skills. You see, games often present challenges in order to achieve a particular goal. This puts a child in a position to think outside the box, or understanding innately how the game can be played for their benefit.
Putting together a puzzle will eventually lead the child to see how easier it is once they have the edges figured out. RPGs and strategies make the child think strategically about an issue. Fast-paced games, like basketball, promote quick thinking, as there is usually very little time to come up with a feasible plan.
Responsibility and Taking Control
Team sports, as well as individual ones, are great for invoking a sense of personal responsibility, which is instrumental later in life. Knowing the value of good teamwork, as well as being aware of the effort required to do a project, really is something many adults lack.
One of the key things about learning is that there is usually resistance on the child’s part. Even if this resistance isn’t conscious, it is still there. The child is aware that they must learn a unit in order to pass the test, and that’s what their efforts are focused on. Few children go on to use what they learned in school, not because it’s not applicable, but because the lessons were boring, and the information fades away quickly.
If you learn through games, the knowledge ‘sneaks up’ on you, giving you relevant information that your mind will retain without even realizing it. Natalie Portman once said: “I don’t love studying, I hate studying. I like learning, learning is beautiful.” Another quote on studying comes from Winston Churchill: “Personally I’m always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.”
So, To Sum up…
We are always learning, whether we want to or not. If this task is presented to us as work, it is natural that we would feel no love for the process. The same goes for children. However, make it into a game, or, if they’re already stuck to the computer screen, find the appropriate video game, and see how they soak up useful skills and info.