First and foremost, a big thank you to Casey Phillips of the Chattanooga Times Free Press for chatting with me and my son Finn about video games.
Read the full article here: Calm, cool, connected: Study suggests an hour of video games a day makes kids better-adjusted
I remember getting my Nintendo Entertainment System all set up for the first time when I was 7 years old. I had Super Mario Bros, Duckhunt, Mighty Bomb Jack, and Trojan as the lineup of for my first set of games. I remember playing them endlessly while I dreamed about the characters, settings, and wondering just how did they make those games? They opened my mind and I was forever changed. Video games gave me something to think, dream, and learn about. A good portion of my youth was spent studying anything gaming related in the gaming magazines of the time. I became a walking, talking pre-Wikipedia for video games.
Fast forward to today. I’ve been pretty successful in getting video games into libraries. Kids, Tweens, and Teens are playing video games together in libraries in pseudo 80’s arcade-like settings and they are connecting with each other and creating community. Friendships are being made over Minecraft, Mario Kart, and more. When I go home, my son Finn and I will sometimes fire up the Wii U. We talk about who gets to use the Wii U gamepad (it’s a pretty coveted thing) and then we talk about the adventure we want to go on. Sometimes it’s Mario Kart, sometimes it’s Lego Star Wars, and sometimes it’s Super Mario 3D World. It doesn’t matter what game we play because the end result is the same: we play, we talk, we laugh, and we share. We fill our heads with amazing adventures. When we’re not playing games, we’re sometimes re-enacting those adventures in the front yard.
Video games are amazing.