mr. cesar apolinario, field reporter for gma news posed me this question: why would kids rather play computer games than engage in outdoor activities, especially this summer?
i cited the following reasons:
- technology has created a culture of laziness. high tech gadgets have certainly made life easier, and people- lazier. every generation is getting more sedentary than ever.
- computers are accessible. it’s difficult to resist playing computer games when there’s a computer within reach. In fact, the trend for kids these days is to have his or her own computer or laptop, which means that unless they’re supervised, they can play anytime they want.
- computer games give the illusion of activity. when kids play counterstrike, dota, nba, and other computer games, they experience a rush of adrenaline which makes them think and feel that they’re engaged in physically strenuous activity.
- the need to be “in.” if classmates and friends are playing a certain game, they don’t want to be the “odd man out.”
- low self-esteem. kids who lack self-confidence and social skills would naturally want to engage in solitary activities like playing computer games.
- parental modelling. kids pattern their attitudes and behaviours after their parents’. if parents are glued to the computer, so will their kids .
- computer games are specially designed to be addictive. that’s how computer game companies rake in cash.
- genetic predisposition. the potential to be an “addict” can get passed on through the genes.
my advise won’t be anything new:
- parents should teach by example and live balanced lives.
- the kids’ extra-curricular use of the computer should be monitored and limited.
- parents should place a premium on family bonding time through shared interests and activities.
- parents should work at being approachable and likeable to their kids, so that the kids don’t escape from their company by playing computer games.
- kids of this generation get easily bored so they should be kept busy with activities they enjoy (not necessarily what the parents enjoy).