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10 video games that can help your children develop

POSTED: August 15, 2014 5:00 a.m.
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Don’t worry when your kids play the newest video game. It can actually be good for them.

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Don’t worry when your kids play the newest video game. It can actually be good for them.

A new study by Oxford University found that children between 10 and 15, male and female, can benefit from playing video games for an hour a day, according to The Telegraph.

“Young people who indulged in a little video game-playing were associated with being better adjusted than those who had never played or those who were on video games for three hours or more,” the study found, according to The Telegraph.

But video games have proven to be important sources of entertainment for a variety of ages. And there’s plenty of benefits from video games across all ages.

Here’s a list of 10 video games that you and your family may want to include in your collection:

Super Mario Bros.
Super Mario Bros. is a classic, there’s no doubt about it. Who doesn’t know of the portly Italian plumber pummeling bricks and cramming down Koopas? The game requires users to hop up and down and hit targets at just the right angle — something that requires good hand-eye coordination, which has been proven by an Indiana University study to improve cognitive and social skills for young people.

Sports games
In the past, video games have been commended for teaching teamwork to kids by the Education Department Center. And there is no absence of that in sports games. Whether it’s the Madden NFL series or the FIFA soccer games, sports-theme video games are teaching kids a lot about how to work with teammates toward an ultimate goal.

Disney Infinity
Imagine Mickey and Minnie Mouse at your finger tips. That’s the case with the Disney Infinity video games, where players can essentially log-in as a certain Disney character. Given that Disney characters have been known to inspire creativity and imagination, playing this game will not only inspire kids to build their own world, but to also become more familiar with Disney characters and have a little fun.

Wii Fit
It’s possible that video games can help you lose weight or at least offer a better direction in terms of physical activity. Wii Fit and the Wii’s resort video games both offer users an experience of doing physical activity — like running, doing yoga or swinging a racket in tennis. Though the effects of the game have been debated in the last few years, a little workout can surely help families cut down on the more than 30 percent of overweight American children.

Cooking Academy
Kids aren’t going into school with very healthy meals. A study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that most American lunches are unhealthy. But that could change with a little more nutrition education, something that games like Cooking Academy can teach. Not only will kids learn how to make the perfect pancake or dessert dish, but the game also instructs young ones how to incorporate multiple food groups into a single meal.

Hasbro Family Game Night
Want your kids to be better students? Family game night seems to be the right way to go, as The Atlantic wrote about last month. The video game Family Game Night can surely help with that, offering families a slew of different game options, like Battleship, Scrabble and Connect Four.

Sesame Street TV
As a TV show, “Sesame Street” has been known to improve cognitive abilities for kids and offer insight into strong social reasoning and attitude, the University of Wisconsin found. So, why not help your child improve in those areas with the Sesame Street TV video game? A child and toddler friendly game, Sesame Street TV allows kids to see themselves on TV and make several choices about the direction the game takes, according to Family Friendly Video Games.

Child of Eden
In 1993, music was said to benefit a child’s development. The same is true now, studies have found. That’s something that the video game Child of Eden can help with. Dressed with fancy colors, special effects and an incredible collection of music, this game will have your kid singing and might even get Dad to get his boogey on.

Jeopardy
Getting your kid to do homework in the summer may be a chore, but there are proven benefits for filling the summer gap months with some educational learning. The best way to do that might be to offer a video game that is part thriller and part quiz show. Jeopardy, based off the television program, will get your children learning new facts that they can use upon returning to school in the fall.

Mario Kart
Sometimes it’s best to unwind and just take a load off. After all, play-time can help kids out too, right? The Atlantic reported back in 2011 that not playing can make kids more anxious. A perfect way to calm them down would be to put them behind the wheel and get them driving around the tracks.

Email: hscribner@deseretdigital.com
Twitter: @herbscribner

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