Computer games for children – when, how long and what.
The topic of computer games and children has been discussed many times in the media. In general, the opinion seems to apply that the computer consumption harms the children. Many parents fear that gambling will make their child fat, lazy and, in the worst case, aggressive. Of course there are games that are not suitable for children. Excessive use is also not beneficial to protect the child’s health and psyche. That is why there are certain rules that parents should follow.
The correct handling of computer games
When and how long can and should children play?
The number of hours of computer consumption is a frequently discussed and very important point when it comes to computer games. But far before regulating the time span, almost all families first have to clarify the question of when children are old enough for computer games or playing on the computer in general. There is certainly no generally applicable rule for this, since children are to be viewed completely individually and differently in their development. What there are, however, are recommendations from experts that should apply to the average of all children.
The EU initiative "clicksafe", for example, has published the following schedule with times:
- Children 4 – 6 years: approx. 20 – 30 minutes a day in the presence of the parents
- Children 7-10 years: about 45 minutes
- Children 11-13 years: approx. 60 minutes a day
This list shows that computer games are generally only recommended for children from the age of 4. As with the use of tablets, children are simply completely overwhelmed with the many colorful pictures and quick picture changes under the age of 4, although of course they show great enthusiasm for using the play equipment.
What is also clear is that it is important to be present at the first touches when playing on computers and to accompany the child in the discovery. With smaller children in particular, parents should become more involved. Watching and playing a game with the child promotes interpersonal relationships and can even be a lot of fun. So you can also get a good overview of what the sprout is concerned with .
Of course, computer games are fascinating and captivate children and adults for hours on the screen. We know from ourselves how time flies when we are immersed in simple or complex game worlds. It is therefore important to always show an alternative to the computer and to keep children from only being fascinated by artificial game worlds.
School is going on
When it comes to school, parents should definitely be educational. Homework should always be done before playing computer games.
Which computer games can my child play without hesitation?
- age rating
When browsing the shelves for computer games for children, the first glance should be directed to the age indicator (USK). This can be found on a sticker on the game box. If there is no sticker to limit the age and you are interested in the game due to the friendly design of the game, you can also find the age rating on www.usk.de and take the game home with you. In addition, there are usually educational recommendations for each game. You can e.g. on www.bundespruefstelle.de. determine.
- special platforms with computer games for children
There are also numerous platforms on the Internet, such as the ToggoClub, on which children can play safe computer games for children, some of which are free of charge. Known sites (often also websites of children’s channels like KIKA and Co.) can be trusted. With less known platforms, it is worthwhile to google for experiences with the individual providers. So you get very good insights into the game offers even without registration.
What fascinates children about computer games so much?
Playing on the computer can become a danger, which is why computer games still have an unpleasant taste, especially for generations that have grown up without the technical marvels. One should also look at the topic of computer games and children from a different perspective. Computer games are a matter of course in today’s youth culture. According to surveys, around 70% of all children between the ages of six and thirteen use the computer at least once a week to play. One should not forget: Children learn when they are happy and so they can also learn through computer games. You also have the opportunity to slip into a different role in the big game worlds with a thousand other players and to try yourself out. Immersing yourself in a different and incredibly elaborate world can inspire and stimulate the child’s imagination.
Children and computer addiction
There are certain games that can trigger an addiction. Role-playing games or online role-playing games count especially because of the possibility of being another person in a fantasy world.
Not every child is at risk of addiction
However, it always depends on the character of a person whether he is potentially at risk. A child who suffers from depression, for example due to school bullying, is of course more at risk of developing a computer addiction and withdrawing completely into the game world than a mentally stable child. The colorful world of such a game can be an escape for the child concerned from the cold terrible world. Computer games have some addictive potential, but there are always several factors that come together before a child actually develops an addiction.
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