Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

December 14, 2008 -

Fat, angry and stupid is no way to go through life, son...

At least, that's what an education consultant seems to be saying as he cautions parents against buying video games as holiday gifts for their teenage sons.

In a guest column for EdNews, Bill Costello writes:

Boys are spending more than thirteen hours a week playing video games. As a result, they're spending less time outdoors playing and exercising. Perhaps this is partially why they are four times more likely to be obese than they were thirty years ago.

Research consistently confirms that the more time boys spend playing video games, the more likely they are to do poorly in school—regardless of age. At a time when boys are already underperforming in school, video games only make the situation worse.

Many recent studies suggest that playing video games saps the motivation of boys and disconnects them from the real world... Violent video games are especially harmful. A definite link has been established between violent video games and antisocial behavior. Games like Grand Theft Auto and Halo can make your son more aggressive.

So if you're thinking of buying video games for your son this holiday season, you might want to reconsider.


Comments

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

is it just me or do i feel that ''Slamming Videogames'' has become a popular trend these days.

hey how about making a schedule for when to study,family time,going out & game that's what my parents do.


 

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Winters here average about -30. Celsius.

Fuck you, Bill.

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Ugh I am in Edmonton...just got -30 here this week :\

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Damn!  If it was that cold here in the NE part of the US, I think my nipples would freeze and fall off!

Sortableturnip's Law: As an online discussion of video game violence grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Jack Thompson approaches 1

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

MEANWHILE - IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE....

38 in the shade...

 

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

You in Alberta too?

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Let's see... i'm 21 now... if they call a 5'10" person who's 150 pounds fat, somebody's standards need a good looking at... I'm pretty much known for being quiet rather than angry... and i got a Dean's Scholarship for the four years i've been in college. And i've been playing video games since i was three and getting at least a couple among other stuff every christmas since.

One of these are not like the other....

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Here is another issue with children going outside. Parents overprotect this days. I remember when I was a kid if I could bike there and back I was allowed to no matter the distance. I had no cell phone or anything if I got in trouble. Now kids these days are lucky to be able to cross the street with their bikes and they even have cell phones to use if they got into trouble.

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

Maybe it's the fact theres a lot more food about nowadays, and most of it is high-fat and processed beyond recognition?

Why reach for Video Games to blame when there's already a wealth of scientific evidence proving that processed food has phsychological, as well as physical detriments to it?

I won't deny that a sedentary life plays a role, and quite a big one, but the same thing could easily be said about sitting round watching the TV all day, which is standard practice for Christmas day, so why is little Billy upstairs playing his Nintendo a problem, whereas Mum and Dad slumped in front of the Telly watching Mary Poppins for the 16th time perfectly alright?

 

The problem isn't the technology being used, it's the lifestyle that promotes it, and that goes far deeper than finger-pointing Video Games, it burrows down to nature of life in countries such as the US and UK.

Still he is entitled to his opinion, in a way he is right in his advice, but his scope is far too narrow and biased to be taken particuarly seriously.

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

This man does more than slam games as "gifts for boys". The article all but says outright that Video Games are "murder simulators" and that they "make kids not do productive stuff". This is hardly attributable to video games as much as the way the US society works, as well as fast food and all technology in general. Post comments on the article at EdNews, as I have done.

Brain: "Pinky, are you pondering what I'm pondering?" Pinky: "I think so, Brain, but we're already naked."

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

"Boys are spending more than thirteen hours a week playing video games. As a result, they're spending less time outdoors playing and exercising. Perhaps this is partially why they are four times more likely to be obese than they were thirty years ago."

the first part of this is a problem with the paranting ability of said boys, if their children are spending too much time inside playing games, maybe they should turn off the TV and send their kids out to play.  as for the second part, i find it highly more likely that they are 4 times more likely to be obese due to americans growing diet of fatty foods and increasingly sedatory lifestyle

"Research consistently confirms that the more time boys spend playing video games, the more likely they are to do poorly in school—regardless of age. At a time when boys are already underperforming in school, video games only make the situation worse."

the same can be said about anything, if your child spends 13 hours a day playing baseball they miss just as much study time as if they played video games for 13 hours a day.  removing video games from the equation doesn't change this increased study time, which again better parenting could account for, would make the situation better

Many recent studies suggest that playing video games saps the motivation of boys and disconnects them from the real world... Violent video games are especially harmful. A definite link has been established between violent video games and antisocial behavior. Games like Grand Theft Auto and Halo can make your son more aggressive.

there is also a definite link between the increase in ice cream sales and shark attacks, that does not mean selling ice cream causes people to get attacked by sharks.  what you link means is that children who have antisocial behavior are drawn to video games, not that the games created said behavior.  increased agressiveness is not necesarily a bad thing, and this also undermines the first point made in the paragraph.  agression is a motivator, you can not simultaniously sap motavation and increase agression.

Re: Education Expert Slams Video Games as Gifts for Boys

He is just rehashing old arguments that have been debated for a long time (and acting as if one side has won the debate even though studies aren't that clear yet) and acting like an expert even though he isn't. Then he throws in GTA and Halo to stir up some controversy. Voila, crappy news article that hates on the punching bag of the moment.

 
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