Below is the essay I wrote this morning..
Today we have reached a stage where educationist and child specialist around the world are constantly arguing and debating over which kind of games, -the traditional or the modern games; that are contributing more towards the overall development of a child. People also argued about the sea of changes that have taken place in child’s play with the advent of globalization and technological knowhow. Traditionally, the chief reasons behind engaging a child in the games and sports are as follows:
1. Most parents think that indulging in games, both traditional and modern computer games, increase the level of creativity and thereby increase their learning ability. Some even believe that it fosters children’s imagination.
2. Another reason why people indulge their children in games is that it induces sense of discipline. This is because all games whether traditional or modern are based on certain code of conduct. A player has to obey certain ethics
3. Many parents, irrespective of their cast, creed, religion and colour have a desire to keep their children fit both physically and mentally. And it is often through games and sports that parents could overcome this dilemma
4. Playing games and being engaged are also known to reduce the stress level in child. This is because children often see playing as leisure and leisure time is something that a child needs in abundance in their development. Some psychologists often believe that active engagement in games and sports can even address issues like “addictive disorders”.
5. Through games and sports, children learn to develop sense of intimacy and bonds among their companions. This would expand their horizons of learning.
6. Human beings are social animals and social life is something that matters the most for a social animals. Through our engagement in games and sports, it increases our social interaction with other beings. Therefore, it has the same bearing on children as our offspring
7. Besides above cited reasons, there is another reason why parents and guardians try to engage their children in games and sports. It is interesting to note that some guardians want their children to earn name, fame and make financial earnings from the games and sports. Besides physical and mental development, they want their children to become professionals in one or the other games.
With the Dawn of internet age, children’s perception of games has undergone sea of changes. Arguably, most children, both in urban and in rural areas now prefer games which are less physical and that require less mental thinking. They prefer computer games and video games which are within the reach of average family over our traditional games which require certain level of artisan skill to create the instrument and then to play. This has now become a cause of concern for many. Both have its merits and demerits.
People who support traditional and indigenous games are right in their own ways. This is because; firstly, traditional games help our generation to preserve our culture and heritage. Through this, it helps our society to preserve our identity and maintain our intra and inter generational bond.
Secondly, traditional and indigenous games need lot of artisan skills while playing and this also helps our children develop their own sense of creativity and skills.
Thirdly, a traditional game like archery requires a lot of knowledge about Physics and Mathematics. For example, if a wind blows at 30 km/hr, then a player should know in advance, which angle to shoot his arrow in order to hit the target.
Fourthly, most traditional games require lot of physical movement. Hence it promotes physical fitness of all the players.
Fifthly, Traditional and indigenous games are all about socializing among the fellow beings. This involves lot of communication and interaction thereby helping children learn the art of socializing and communicating among the fellow beings.
Sixthly, Traditional and indigenous games are either invented or discovered by our ancestors for fun, enjoyment and celebration. The sole purposes of such games are to promote human happiness and jubilation.
However Traditional and Indigenous games suffer from following demerits. Firstly, it’s monotonous and redundant. Secondly every child cannot play those games since it laborious while making the instruments and then playing. Thirdly, they are expensive for an average child to own. Fourthly, traditional games have undergone certain modification change and hence they are not so traditional and indigenous it is sounds.
Likewise, people who support modern computer games are also not so wrong either. This is because; firstly we live in a world where information technology is so indispensible. Proficiency in computer is a must criteria to survive in this IT dominated world. People often say that If you have no computer knowledge, then you are unemployable. Hence it is often through e-games and video games that children learn the basics of computer
Secondly, e games and video games are not so expensive. With minimum investment an average child can get access to thousands of games both offline and on line. Therefore the life for children becomes more exciting and entertaining.
Thirdly, e-games and video games can be played in the confines of our own bed rooms and livings rooms. This helps parents control their children and maintain sanitation in their surroundings
Fourthly, It is often believed that through such games, children gain the state-of-the-art technology experience thereby raising their awareness of innovation and imagination
Fifthly, "A recent study from the Education Development Center and the U.S. Congress-supported Ready To Learn (RTL) Initiative found that a curriculum that involved digital media such as video games could improve early literacy skills when coupled with strong parental and teacher involvement. Interestingly, the study focused on young children, and 4- and 5-year-olds who participated showed increases in letter recognition, sounds association with letters, and understanding basic concepts about stories and print"
Sixthly, Many games today also emphasize the cooperative aspects of game play, in which two or more players need to work together in order to reach a common goal. For instance, games like Lego Star Wars or Kirby’s Epic Yarn are enhanced by having players cooperate to solve in-game puzzles.
However, modern computer games are not without their flaws; Firstly, These games are mostly played in the confines of individual homes and rooms. Hence, it’s not social. This has limited child’s contact with outside world. Secondly, they are these games can be played even in bed and are not so physical. Such games has been the cause of many life style diseases like obesity. Thirdly, these games are developed by business houses with the main aim of profit maximization. Therefore investment in such games is often seen as social cost in many of the countries. Fourthly, most people see computer games as time pass and not as a source of entertainment and enjoyment. Fifthly, some computer games have inspired children to copy the characters and imitate in reality. Many people in USA think that one children shooting and killing his classmates actually got the inspiration from the war game he played on his computer.
With these set of argument, it will be up to the concern parents, teachers and guardians as to which type of game to promote for their children to foster their growth and development.