Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Benefits of Computer Time

We typically hear news stories about the dangers of letting your kids use the computer. Most of the articles allude to computer=bad. However, we all know how hard it would be to get a job if we didn't know how to use a computer. So, lets be realistic here. OF COURSE, the only group to show a negative behavior after using the computer is Caucasian boys. Sometimes I feel like I just can't win.

FROM NBC:If you think your kids are wasting their time and withering their brains by playing on the computer.. listen up. it may not be all bad. A new study shows those hours on the computer may actually have a positive effect on your pre-teen. We're talking about kids 6-12 and even researchers were surprised. they started looking for negative effects of computer time and found it might not be all bad. If you've ever worried about the hours your little one spends doing this.

A new study says computer time- even playing games- may actually be productive.
sot: Prof. Sandra Hofferth / University of Maryland "They're learning how to use it. they're learning how to get information, answer questions and develop strategies. The study by the university of Maryland looked at pre teens and in many cases linked hours at the computer with an increase in test scores.

African American boys saw the biggest jump with more access to home computers than ever before.
Prof. Sandra Calvert / Director / Children's Digital Media Center, Georgetown University "The dramatic rise for African American boys is striking" Their reading scores were up four points-Girls scores also increased, and the study found white girls saw better social interaction the more they played on the computer. The only group who didn't see improvement was white boys with a slight decrease in test scores and increase in violent tendencies.

Prof. Sandra Hofferth / University of Maryland "As they get older there is more concern possibly about the more aggressive games. But that would be more on the video consoles rather than on the computer. " So for parents, a caution, not all games are created equal and there can be too much of a good thing. Prof. Sandra Calvert / Director / Children's Digital Media Center, Georgetown University"I think that parents need to really look at what exactly in terms of the media diet it is that their children are doing." But it seems, in the right combination, child's play may help kids win in the classroom. This does not apply to television. The screen that kids still spend most of their time in front of- and not video consoles like X-box or PlayStation- only the home computer.

-NewsAnchorMom Jen

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