There are nearly equal numbers of educators who consider technology for an answer as far as an issue. Even though a frequent notion is that technology is hindering the pupils’ capacity to think and analyze, there is also a strong opinion in favor of video games and digital gadgets’ capacity to engage students and improve learning by using more than one sensory stimulators. Regardless of the rising concern regarding the pupils’ deteriorating attention spans, institutions are incorporating them in the process of classroom learning.
Children are inherently inquisitive creatures. They have a curiosity to discover new things and learn by way of discovering and experimenting even before they the are subjected to methods of formal education such as reading or writing. Science is a discipline of experiments and discoveries. The National Science Education Standards emphasize that “science instruction should give students three types of scientific abilities and understandings. Pupils will need to understand the fundamentals and theories of mathematics, acquire the abstract and reasoning abilities of scientists, and also comprehend the character of science as a specific type of human endeavor. Students, therefore, have to have the ability to invent and execute investigations that examine their thoughts, and they will need to comprehend why these investigations are uniquely strong. Studies indicate that students are considerably more inclined to comprehend and keep the concepts that they have discovered this manner “. Hence, it becomes imperative to engage children in science education at an early stage.
Digital games are more capable to gain students’ interests and focus compared to another traditional way of imparting instruction in a classroom. But some educationists also respect them as offenders of exponential decrease in the attention span in children. The upcoming sections in this article talk about the participation of children in matches from the technology era, types of matches offered in the sector and the effect of electronic gambling as learning aids in classrooms.
Gaming as well as the New Age Kids
Digital technology has enlarged the horizons of video gambling in today’s world. Children are exposed to much more complicated and challenging technological surroundings than their counterparts have been from more than half a century ago. Involvement of children in electronic gaming is a consequence of several vital changes in the culture and lifestyle of the contemporary society. Easy accessibility of technologies, dispensable income because of double income households and absence of infrastructure for outside activities in several cities are several significant contributors in creating display games an significant part their children’s’ lives. A study by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2010) found that only 20 percent of the census blocks are within half a mile of a block boundary. Also, the effect of peer pressure cannot be undermined in these times of social networking.
The digital gaming market is one of the fastest growing segments of the global entertainment industry. US is witnessing unprecedented penetration of digital Brawl Stars Hack amongst youngsters. In the US, 97% of the teens play some type of game on a regular basis. In India, the gaming market has grown manifold in the last few years. Hence, it is imperative that educationists are continuously contemplating the use of digital gaming as a learning tool in classrooms. Institutions are also employing innovative ways to leverage the digital advantage for enhancing the learning experience at schools.
What are Digital Games?
There is no concrete definition of games as it may vary with an individual’s preference and profession. Games can be defined as a “method where players participate in artificial conflict, defined by rules, which lead to a quantifiable result”. Technology and digitization add new dimensions to games where simulations, interactivity, augmented reality, alternative reality, collective intelligence and sensory stimulators such as sound and visual effects. Digital games are also characterized by their portability and limitless accessibility.
Role-playing games, simulation games, and puzzles are some of the most popular digital games. In role-playing games, the player enacts the role of a particular character in a virtual world moving from one level to the other based on the outcome of the earlier level. RPGs can be a single player such as the dungeons and dragons from earlier days of gaming or multi-player games such as Diablo III, Xenoblade, Final Fantasy XIII-2 or Mass Effect 3. MMORPG or the Massive Multiple Online Role-Playing Games are an extension of the RPGs where a large number of players interacts in an online virtual world. Simulation games create realistic situations in virtual worlds. The outcome will depend on the player’s decision-making and responsiveness and will be closely similar to what may happen in a real world in the same situation. Widely used in training and analysis, simulation games are also popular due to their unpredictable and personalized outcomes. Flight Simulator X, Live for Speed (LFS) and Need for Speed have been extremely popular simulation games for a long time. Puzzles genre of digital games involves problem solving and analysis with varying degrees of difficulty depending on the nature of the game. Crosswords and treasure hunt games are basic forms of puzzle games in both physical and digital form.
All types of digital games involve a social involvement of players. Some need collaborative efforts to play while others may be discussed or analyzed socially. In spite of some games being accused of outright violent visual effects, a well-designed game can accelerate the thinking process by motivating, engaging, involving creativity and developing a meta-game i.e., social interactions inspired and enhanced inside or outside the game. Incorporating digital gaming in the basic education framework can lead to augmented competitiveness and multi-dimensional growth in children.
Digital Games in Science Education – Why and Why Not?
The 21st century requires the mentors and the students to integrate technology into the curriculum. Though the ultimate goal is to benefit the students in terms of learning and experience, unsupervised, unorganized or irrelevant application can lead to complete failure or have negative effects. Some of the negative impacts of digital games in general and in context with the education are listed below:
- Digital games have been facing constant rebuke for allegedly enhancing aggression amongst kids and developing a violent streak at an early stage. In a study by Anderson and Bushman (2001), Children involved in violent video games are more likely to have increased aggressive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and decreased prosocial helping. Use of weapons and being rewarded for being violent is a cause of widespread concern.
- Digital games can be addictive for children and make them physically inactive. Digital games, other than social networking, are considered for reduced physical activity leading to obesity in kids and postural and skeletal disorders.
- Addiction to games is also known to make kids socially secluded. Impulsive behavior, depression and increased anxiety levels are largely attributed to excessive gaming in children. Some studies also suggest that the children playing games are unable to concentrate for a long span and have reduced attention span.
- Children are prone to absorbing socially unacceptable behavior through some digital games such as using profanities and ill-treating the fairer sex. Lack of adequate knowledge about screening the material available online is a growing concern amongst the parents.