Stop stressing about your kids playing video games! That was a message stressed by Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook’s Townhall Q&A held at the company’s headquarters last week.
Sure, video games played in an over-abundance of frequency can lead to overexposure to violence and lack of physical activity, but the positive developmental effects of video games on children, namely enhanced creativity and critical thinking, are too often ignored.
Zuckerberg himself credits an early love of video games to his interest in programming; keep in mind this is interested in programming allowed for the conception of Facebook, after all. While discussing one of his favorite video games, Civilization, Zuckerberg drew attention to the importance of video games and stated his belief that depending on the content of the video game, video games can be immensley helpful in developing a child’s creativity.
Zuckerberg that his childhood self grew so enthused by video games that he wanted to create them himself. Even more so, childhood Zuckerberg did indeed develop a few video games. “I got a computer when I was 10 or 11 and was playing games and wanted to make them better, so I just started kind of messing around and designing some stuff myself,” said Zuckerberg The games were terrible by any objective measure of a game, but there’s some gratification that you get when it’s your game, and when you’re playing something that you designed.”
Zuckerberg believes that parents should not discourage their children from playing video games, but that they should encourage playing a WIDE VARIETY of different types of video games allowing the children to develop a wide breadth of ways to think and solve problems: “I hear a lot that parents are concerned about their kids playing games, and there are valid concerns and I think that there’s an important debate to be had around that.”