Mrs. Ellis’s seventh and eighth grade English classes have been writing a persuasive essay on the pros and cons of playing video games. Here are a few of the students’ work.

Video Game Violence

By Aaryn Puterbaugh

Grade 8

The wrong message is being sent. Video games with violence teach kids that it is OK to go around killing things. The video games that are out today promote violent behavior. Kids play games like Grand Theft Auto where it teaches them that stealing and killing is an OK thing to do. Most kids go out and try out the things they see in the video game they are playing. That can have harmful effects on them.

Playing violent video games is taking a toll on kids’ brains. They desensitize kids to killing and violence. Kids should not be exposed to killing because it is not an OK thing. Parents should keep an eye on what their kids are playing and take an interest in it. Parents that think their’ kids would never play a killing game should think again.

The number one way to tell if your kids are playing a violent game is in their behavior. They may be irritable and cranky. They may be gaining weight or becoming thinner. They may become obsessed with things they saw in the game and try to act it out. They may not think that they are doing anything wrong, but they may hurt someone because they are trying to be like a video game.

People say that they are just harmless games, but they take a toll on your body. People say that they are just games and their kids know that, and they know that it is wrong to kill someone. The same video game that parents think is harmless can make it so their kids hurt people and think because kids can’t separate fiction from fact. Kids that have parents that are not paying attention to what they are playing are more likely to be violent. Kids need to have a stable place where they can feel safe.

For people that say it’s just a game, kids can make it reality. Video games should be fun and not make it so they are scary. The video games should be E rated and not have killing. If they are violent games, make it so kids can’t get them just like R rated movies. Kids that are video game fanatics, tone it down and stay away from violent games.

“Video games, the goods

without the bad”

By Harley Lebel

Grade 8

I like video games, and I’m positive many other people like video games, too. I also know that there are those who think that video games are bad for the youth. Those people seem to stereotype the bad video games in with the good video games. You can’t blame the makers of the video game. They are only doing their job. They even put game ratings on the back of the game so that parents can use their “parental guidance” to help out with the choices that the children make. And besides, not all video games are horrible or bad for the brain.

Yes, you have those people who sit on the couch all day playing those video games. But, it just shows you how well the graphic designers of gaming are doing their job. They also have the video games that are good, and even create skills for the gamer. Like for example, playing video games can enhance reading skills. They sit there for hours reading dialogue and story lines for the video game. Some children don’t like books “too boring” they say. But if they like video games, then they read a lot more than they are aware of, and that gives them more practice with reading.

Video games can do more for children than enhancing reading skills. Video games can inspire those interested in them. An example would be, if a child goes over to a friend’s house and that friend had a football game. They play. He likes it. He wants to try out for the football team. Very simple, and good, because he is getting interested in football through video games. Would you want to rid the child of that inspiration?

Video games can also enhance senses. More than 45 percent of the adults who played video games as children have become more aware of who to trust, and for which reasons to trust them. They also make them more aware of the surroundings and use their five senses better. Of course, there are the people who try to imitate the driver of that game that shoots those people. But that is their choice. You, the parents, can keep track of which games they play, how long, and under what conditions. They also have passwords for the system so that the children don’t play all day.

Are you doing your job? Are you allowing your children to play those video games for hours and then complain about it? There are things you can do, too. To make sure that your children have time to play video games, but don’t affect grades, time, or health, you can follow some simple suggestions. First, you can keep track of how long your child plays. This way they are not spending all day indoors on the couch, but also so that they can’t get mad. Second, you can keep track of which games they play. There are always ratings on the back of the game which show the content of the video games. M is for mature, T is for teen, and E for everyone. These are the ratings you usually see.

So as you see, not all video games are horrible. Some even provide benefits for the gamer. So instead of stereotyping all games with the “bad games,” why don’t we just make sure that what children play are not those “bad games?” Instead, let’s help them get interested in the fun games that don’t influence people shooting someone over a car. Encourage the use of games that allow hand-eye coordination or that allow your brain to strategize. Remember, don’t hate all video games, just the ones that put bad influences on children.

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