I don't like Minecraft
I do like Minecraft
I have no idea what I think about Minecraft
Can you tell this post will be helpful to you?
So seriously, I think every parent struggles with the amount of technology, the type of technology and WHAT technology to expose to their children. You have so many factors to consider...
- developmental level
- addictive tendencies and the personality
- skill level
- ability to obey you when you tell them to turn it off
- educational value, if any
- and many many more!
Technology is not going away. So let's talk about Minecraft, just ONE of the games/technology out there for kids to be obsessed with.
I have noticed some positives about Minecraft. The kids work together when they are playing. They have endless, creative posibilities. They learn certain levels of computer programming, read books on end about how to create and explore and program within Minecraft. They love it. They are forced to work together and they have so many conversations about the game. It is a shared common interest that brings kids together.
I have noticed some negatives about Minecraft. The obsession level is high. I meah HIGH. Think about it, and entire world you can live in and create yourself? The possibilities are endless. Children can spend every waking moment devising ways to enhance their "worlds" and make them better.
Along these lines, I have noticed that when my four little ones play actual board games and cooperative games that actually have rules and no "cheat codes", they don't like this! Boardgames actually come with rules and it is important to be able to follow them for cooperative and successful play. I have really had to work with them to explain that in REAL life, there are rules, boundaries, consequences. In Minecraft, if you don't like a world, you just create a new one. You can't do that in real life. This is the world we get. Yup, there's dishes and laundry and picking up bedrooms in this world. No do overs..
Do your laundry? Chores? Interact with your family? Play outside? Forget it. I think the saying, "Everything in moderation", applies here. If the parent is involved, that's half the battle.
Communicate with your children, be involved, support them, don't leave them alone in a virtual world!
My thoughts on Minecraft can apply to many different facets of technology, I suppose.
My main thought, however, is to communicate with your children, stay involved and help them to love the world they actually live in 24/7 so that their main objective in playing Minecraft doesn't just become to escape.
We all love a good escape once in a while and there's nothing wrong with that. Remember, moderation and support is the key.