Playing online video games has been the normal hobbies of many kids out there. And of course, the most popular one is the Minecraft! At the age of 6 to 8 years old, your kid may be spending most of their time playing this video game, so the alarming question for parents is—“is Minecraft bad for kids?”
First, let’s give you some context: Ask any kid with gadgets about Minecraft and he will surely know what this game is all about. Well, for parents who do not know what Minecraft is, it is basically like playing with Legos where you build stuff—but, this one is virtual.
Minecraft players are building virtual houses, buildings, underground cities, volcanoes, survival houses, and more. Kids can basically create a whole new world virtually in there!
The good side of playing Minecraft for your kids
Parents, if you think positively about the nature of this online video game, it actually helps your child to be creative and imaginative. You can look at what they have build in Minecraft and you will surely be astounded by how they can build cities with just mere virtual Legos.
In fact, researchers found out in 2017 that playing Minecraft can lead your kid to future success when they study in the university for college. Your kid’s communication skills, adaptability, and resourcefulness can be enhanced whenever they play Minecraft.
Also, Minecraft is a non-violent online video game compared to others which are about killing opponents, crashing cars, or smashing houses.
This online video game can also teach your kids about basic programming and computer science—which are by the way one of the most high paying jobs in the Philippines today.
Aside from these, your kids can also learn the value of teamwork, gain skills in critical thinking, project management, and enhance their out-of-the-box thinking capabilities.
By playing Minecraft, your kid can be an architect, engineer, and even the construction worker. It enables them to have a pretend play at the right age.
So, is Minecraft bad for kids?
However, everything that is too much is bad news.
Intense playing of Minecraft can become an addiction that can lead kids to become a problematic child. Your kid may become highly dependent on playing Minecraft to spend their time with.
When this happens, they will refuse going out, study and read, isolate themselves, and prohibiting them discovering other potential activities that can spark their interests.
Consequently, your kids may have poor social skills, low academic performance at school, and possible obesity or lack of nutrients since they may skip meals to play.
Moreover, there is also the issue of possible bullying in playing Minecraft. As you know, this online video game can be played by multiple people and they can be really violent.
Although, this is not the goal of the game, some players attack and kill other players to steal their virtual possessions and then, destroy the buildings they have built.
Minecraft players call this as “griefing.” Your kid may be exposed to this and will be needing your guidance to handle these stressful situation.
How to manage your kid’s Minecraft play?
So by now, as parents, you probably understand that playing Minecraft has its advantages and disadvantages for your child.
The key to protect your child against its bad effects is basically management. You can try to follow our recommendations below:
- Provide your child other choices for hobbies. You can manage your kid’s online gaming by giving him or her more options to spend their time with. Guide them into making their interests more multimodal by introducing toys, books, educational-opportunities, or even sports. By doing this, your kid may discover what they really like and enjoy doing aside from playing Minecraft.
- Allow your kid’s focus and attention to navigate to other interests. As your kid may have discovered their interests by introducing them to other choices of hobbies, you should allow them to spend most of their time doing it. Parents, you must let your kid be dedicated to some hobbies, not all the time that we have to stop them.
- Parents, you should also find your own passion and hobbies, too! Sometimes we should also allow our kids to discover things on their own. You can then use your own time by doing your own passion and hobbies, too! And maybe, your kid may see it as something interesting, but take not, do not force it to them.
- Simply, play Minecraft with your child. Another way to manage your child’s playtime is to play with them, right? You can see first hand how the game improves and helps them, general speaking. Plus, you may find Minecraft enjoyable, too. This online video game is not just for kids but for adults as well. In fact, there are 40 million adult active players in Minecraft. This can be a great bonding between you and your kid.