Gaming is a popular pastime for kids of almost every age, but not all parents are on board. A primary concern for moms and dads is preserving their children’s safety online. Fortunately, there are ways to help your kids game safely while having fun with technology.
Consider these tips from ReadCountCraft on how to indulge your children’s love of gaming and instill good values at the same time.
Use Web Filters for Safer Browsing and Downloads
The availability of web-based games means that parents can spend less on their children’s gaming endeavors. At the same time, clicking around online can expose kids to unsafe and even harmful media. Monitoring your children’s activity is the best way to keep up with what they’re doing (and who they’re talking to).
But you can also utilize technology solutions for filtering web content and barring unsafe downloads. For example, Techradar recommends parental controls to limit activity and access to offensive websites. Antivirus protection helps avoid downloads that can cause viruses and stop gameplay altogether.
Choose Social Games for Maximum Benefits
Gaming can be beneficial in many ways, but the social element is what really appeals to kids today. During pandemic times and beyond, The University of North Texas points out that connecting with peers is critical for children and teens. Older kids may enjoy interactive multiplayer games like Minecraft, Fortnite, Roblox, and Among Us – all of these offer cooperative play, challenges, and chat features. Of course, appropriate monitoring and talking about online safety is crucial when allowing kids to use in-game chat functions. But even younger kids can play free, collaborative games online (with a parent’s help).
Upgrade the Gaming Experience
Are you thinking about rewarding your responsible gamers for good behavior? Upgrading their video game experience could be an excellent way to show your approval and appreciation for following household rules and limits on technology use. Gaming equipment like a specially designed monitor can enhance the gaming experience, and with online deals and discounts, you don’t have to spend a lot of money, either.
And with a gaming headset, kids can keep their sound effects to themselves – without damaging their hearing. Strong Wi-Fi is another must-have if your kids (or the adults in the household) enjoy streaming games online. Fiber-optic connections are ideal for online gaming, especially multiplayer games like Fortnite, so check your internet options for the fastest rate.
Don’t Let Gaming Dominate Your Child’s Time
While gaming can be beneficial for kids in many ways – experts suggest that games help promote critical thinking and fine motor skills – it shouldn’t dominate your child’s daily life. Ensure that your home remains family- and faith-centered by checking in with your kids and implementing at-home devotionals.
Choose games carefully and check their ratings as well. Have open conversations with your tweens and teens about online risks, behavior, and household rules. Schedule family mealtimes so you can reconnect – and game together whenever possible.
Indulging your child’s love of video games can be both enjoyable and even beneficial. Especially if you get into gaming as a group, the time you spend on screens could be part of a regular family routine. Keeping an open communication flow with your kids while enforcing healthy boundaries means a great online experience for everyone – without worries over internet dangers and security risks.