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Video Games are helping kids to Learn!

The first video games were not designed with education in mind. Pong, Mario Brothers, Sonic the Hedgehog and Street Fighter didn’t help anyone learn algebra, practice vocabulary, or memorize details of Ancient Roman history, but they were fun.

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A number of recent studies have indicated that video games, even violent ones, can help kids develop essential emotional and intellectual skills that support academic achievement. These findings led many innovative teachers around the globe to recognize the benefits of gaming and include game-based learning in their curriculam.

Video games can be a powerful tool to help children develop certain life skills. They can help parents choose appropriate leisure-time games, help educators seek ways to supplement classroom teaching, and help game developers create games that teach. Some of the benefits of the games and game development are:

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• Video Games Teach Problem-Solving Skills and Creativity: Video games can help children’s brain development. Video games don’t have to be labeled “educational” to help children learn to make decisions, use strategies, anticipate consequences and express their personalities.

• Games teach new technical skill sets. : Video games are a powerful way to get kids interested in technology from an early age, and teach them basic technical skills that will reap rewards down the road. For example,the wildly popular game Angry Birds is now teaching children basic coding principles. Video games also hone spatial thinking, reasoning, memory, perception, and problem-solving

&bulll; Video games help gauge children’s cognitive development and facilitate individualized learning.: Many teachers think games can motivate struggling students. Low-performing students are often disengaged from what is happening in the classroom, and require the most individualized learning plans. Games are an effective vehicle for addressing these learning gaps.

• Games improve critical thinking skills: “Alternate reality games (ARGs) can be used as an immersive learning system that combines rich narrative, digital technology, and real-world game play,” author Paul Darvasi wrote in an article for KQED. “Students must exercise critical thinking, resilience, and creative problem solving to succeed in an ARG.”