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August 25, 2010


Kofla Olivieri

Online games is like anything in life, too much of it without proper supervision can be harmful.


Most interactive online games are violent and completely inappropriate for children. I certainly agree that parents should supervise their children when playing online games. And I don't think that these kind of games help shy children build social skills. These skills can only be built when the child has a direct contact with the real world.


There's nothing wrong with youngsters being shy. Some of them have a strong self-esteem and an inner peace that shines. Yet, in some children, shyness can be the manifestation of inner problems - such as anger or some kind of frustration. The best way to deal with this kind of handicap is to gradually try to build up their self-esteem. How? By gently introducing them to the real world, by encouraging them to show a skill in public - drawing or playing a musical instrument for instance - by asking them to invite some friends over on a saturday afternoon. There is not one single online game that can help shy children build social skills!


I used to have a big problem with my eldest son when he was 15. He was really glued to video games and played for hours every day. Maybe it was a mistake to buy him a laptop at that age... During that time his performance at school had dropped a lot and all he cared about was playing interactive games on the computer. It took us a lot of effort and talking to persuade him that spending so much time playing games would eventually harm his health and have a negative effect on his future and social life. I am not against some good online games for children if there is a strict time limit - let's say 3-4 hours weekly.


I couldn't agree more, Kofla. I use a lot of educative online games in class which can greatly help children to improve their skills in English. And I'm sure there are a lot of fun games children can use in their free time. But when playing at home, they must be supervised.


Constantine mou, I believe that children can have fun playing inoffensive online games once in a while. I also don't think that shy children can acquire social skills through video games. They can have fun for a while but they must learn to use them in moderation.


I was a shy child myself, Laura. And in those days there was no Internet or video games to ....boost my social skills. I was afraid of strangers as a child, I was very introvert and quiet but my parents never made me feel that there was something wrong with me. And I gradually grew into a very outspoken, outgoing and extrovert person! Thanks for the feedback.


Depriving him of the laptop he wanted would have made things worse, I think. What really worked with your son is the way you, as parents, tried to communicate and talk to him by exchanging viewpoints instead of imposing your own.

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