Parenting Hero Tips: Help Your Child Play Video Games Safely

Ideally, children should enjoy a healthy amount of game time that isn’t electronic. But when it’s time for digital games, you want to be prepared. Check out this article from Delu on safe gaming for kids.

We want to thank Daniel Sherwin for providing us this article on how to help your child play video games safely!

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

Sometimes it seems as though members of the younger generation were born with video game controllers in their hands. From indie games to heavy-hitting household names like Nintendo and Sony, gaming is a part of a lot of children’s lives. Research actually indicates that video games can improve children’s literacy and communication skills, according to a survey conducted by UK-based company National Literacy Trust. How can you ensure your child is staying safe when they’re playing, whether it be online or solo on the console? Let’s take a look at some ways to assuage those fears.

1. Talk to them about what they’re playing

Communication is essential in the parent-child relationship, and keeping them safe while gaming is no exception to this rule. Popular games will appear on your child’s radar, and you should create a welcoming environment so they come to you to talk about these things, instead of playing them without your knowledge. Talking with your child about their gaming habits is a great way to create trust and improve your relationship. According to a 2011 study, girls ages 11 to 16 had positive relationships with their parents because those parents had played age-appropriate games with them. The study also
reported that girls experienced fewer symptoms of depression and anxiety. When you start communicating with your child about the games they’re playing, begin simply by monitoring the kinds of games they play and engaging with them about it -- show an interest! Learn about the games and why your child likes to play them before making overarching decisions.

2. Research age-appropriate game ratings

The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing ratings for video games that parents can take into account while they research the kinds of games they want their children to play. A study from 2017 conducted by Iowa State University found that when parents used the rating system to evaluate games before buying them for their children, those kids spent less time playing violent video games.

3. Make it more enjoyable!

If your child is playing online games like Fortnite and your network isn’t up to the task, this may sour their experience. You’ll need a high-speed internet connection that can send and receive all the necessary information during online multiplayer games. An easy answer to the speed issue would be to look into fiber-optic connections. Having more bandwidth can greatly improve connection speed, but also the reliability of your internet service. This way, kids won’t be discouraged by slow response times or disconnections!

4. Watch their favorite streamer with them

YouTube and Twitch streamers are no doubt something your child talks about with friends. There are family-friendly streamers who make sure to avoid profanity, as well as those who
don’t play violent games. If you prefer that your child stay away from those kinds of games, these streamers will help them get into gaming without the added anxiety of more-than-colorful commentary. Family-friendly Fortnite streamers include users like Ninja and TBNRFrags. Showing that you’re interested in the kind of content they like to watch, and engaging in that
content with them will help your case when it comes to the trust they have in you and your recommendations.

You’re all set

You are well on your way to supporting your child’s desire to play video games -- while at the same time making sure they’re safe. All that’s left is to pick up the controller (or plug in your keyboard) and join the fun!

Despite having access to screen time, it’s still important for children to play games that aren’t electronic. Team games like Delu can be fun for the whole family, and you can play indoors or outdoors. Pick up a Delu game pack today!

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