Gaming is often published in the mainstream media as having a negative impact on the way children think, particularly when it comes to violence. However in the last 5 years, it has become a huge part of young male culture with more and more children becoming interested in gaming as technology advances. In this 12 minute video, instructional designer and author Ali Carr-Chellman, who studies the most effective ways to teach children, talks about how young boys have become detached from their education and tells us how gaming can be used to help re-engage them during the early stages of their learning. If you have a young child, you’re going to want to listen to what she has to say.
It’s rare to see video games reflected in such a positive light in relation to the education of children, more often than not it’s usually only ever mentioned as a contributing factor to violence or crime among youths. But these stories and studies are generally isolated a particular title such as Grand Theft Auto or the previously famous Manhunt series, where the sole purpose of playing the game is centered around violence and criminal activity. It’s easily misconstrued, for example if someone was to conduct a study on films, having never watched TV in their lives, and used the SAW series as the focus point of their study, their conclusion would be that films are likely to negatively impact those who watch them.
My point is it’s easy to pick out a handful of mature rated video game titles and then say gaming is a bad influence. The facts are that research has shown that video games, as a whole and as an industry, can have a positive impact on children and thus should be utilized in the world of education to help create an environment where children, particularly young males, can engage on a level where they’re fully interested. Minecraft is an exceptional example on this topic thanks to its appeal as a recreational tool and has been used in classrooms worldwide to aid in education.