While we might be cooped up and isolated for a while any day now, plenty of gamers are going to see this as a free for all, which is concerning. The other side of the coin is that this is a way to connect with others when they can't do it in real life because of self-isolation. Here are some tips parents can use to help their gamers play a little more intelligently while we are isolating.
- Parents, try to invest some time into their gaming, either as a cheerleader / fan, or a player. The benefits of being coached in their favourite game are very important. One reason is understanding the information on the screen, and another reason would be connecting with your kid. The tone of the conversation changes when they see you as a teammate and not an opponent.
- Try to promote quality over quantity. In this case, suggest that they prioritise real life friends rather than their online friends for the next little while. Don't worry, they'll know how to connect with friends from school online.
- Try to take a couple of days off gaming per week where you spend a little more time as a family being productive or planning something that can be done when you're out. In this case, even if it's watching movies on another screen, it's a different activity.
- Help them understand that overplaying will take them beyond the benefits they think they are going to get from playing. Expect more frustration, less concentration and ultimately less fun.
Limit gaming sessions based on these criteria:
- A 3 hour session is plenty and beyond that they will start to feel the effects of overplaying.
- Stick to 3 hours as a max, take a day or 2 off, and they will find themselves enjoying their gaming time a lot more thank if they were to over indulge during this tough time.
If you would like to know more about online gaming safety, go to: https://www.esafety.gov.au/parents/big-issues/gaming
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