A gust post from Alyssa Strickland.
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As a parent, you might worry that video games can be a negative influence on your kids. In fact, gaming can be beneficial for children and adults alike. Spark & Stitch Institute reveals that video games can improve problem-solving, spatial skills, and teamwork. If you want your household to enjoy the benefits of gaming, there are a few steps you can take to ensure safety and fun for all involved.
Long Wait for Isabella is a Christian family lifestyle blog that helps families thrive with practical, educational resources. Read on for our quick guide to implementing gaming into your family—the right way.
Choose the right gaming console and accessories
Before your family can start gaming, you have to get the right equipment. While there are many games you can play simply using a mobile phone or tablet, a high-quality video game console will open up more options for your family. You just hook the console up to your TV. Digital Trends offers a list of the best consoles currently on the market, including PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and Nintendo Switch. Read reviews to see which option best suits your needs. You may also be able to try out consoles in the store.
Identify what games are best for your family
The diversity of video games is enormous. Do your research to see which options are fun and age-appropriate for the little ones living under your roof. The Guardian has a list of family-friendly games you can check out. Mario Kart 8 is a user-friendly racing game that is sure to get your family’s competitive juices going. Just Dance is another great option that has the player copy choreography steps. If you’re worried your kids might turn into couch potatoes with too much gaming, this active game is the answer.
Install safety settings for your kids
You can set parental controls on video games to help limit your children’s overall screen time, access to sensitive materials, or virtual wallet access. You can also restrict the use of communication via games. Our Community Now provides a comprehensive guide on how to enable parental controls on a diversity of gaming platforms, from Nintendo to Playstation and more. Having these restrictions in place can help keep kids safe and bring parents valuable peace of mind.
Follow best practices for heavy usage
If your family ends up using your video game technology consistently, it’s important to ensure their health and safety. For example, you might invest in a gaming chair that helps to prevent neck and back pain after long hours of sitting. Curbed explains that gaming chairs include comfort-enhancing design elements like armrests and shoulder support. You might also consider upgrading your internet connection to accommodate heavy gaming, especially if your family likes multiplayer games. Look for a provider that offers a gamer-friendly internet experience that ensures play runs smoothly with minimal interruption.
Make sure to take regular breaks from gaming
Even with all the appropriate safety and security features in place, it’s important to take breaks when gaming. You want your kids to stay physically active and not spend all day in front of a screen. Video Game Alternatives has a list of signs that mean it’s time to hit pause on a gaming session. For example, if you feel groggy, your joints hurt, or your back aches, it’s time to step away from the console for a bit.
Videogames can be fun for kids and adults alike, giving your family a great activity to enjoy together. The above guide explains how you can ensure you introduce gaming into your household in a way that is safe and fun for everyone.
Alyssa Strickland created millennial-parents.com for all the new parents on the block. Alyssa believes the old adage that it takes a village to raise a child, but she also thinks it takes a village to raise a parent! Millennial-Parents is that village. Today’s parents can be more connected than ever and she hopes her site will enrich those connections. On Millennial-Parents, she shares tips and advice she learns through experience and from other young parents in three key areas — Education, Relationships, and Community.