Encouraging Play in Your Geek Children

Susan Dawson

Children aged two to five spend an average of 32 hours a week watching television, which can cause parents some concern. While movies and TV programs can do wonders for lowering a child’s stress levels and stimulating their imagination, it should always be paired with other forms of play.

How Tech Play Teaches Transferable Skills

Keeping up with the latest movie and TV releases is an important part of childhood, but other technology can help to build skills and stimulate intellectual growth. For instance, play on electric toy vehicles can ultimately lead to good driving habits, while a few hours on Resident Evil 2 teaches multitasking and focus. Allow your child to follow their passions but suggest games which foster transferable skills which can be applied in education and work. Research suggests that board games improve critical thinking in a child, so why not follow up a viewing of Aquaman with a game of Arkham Horror?

Fostering Imagination

In the past, when everyone raised cattle and grew crops, imagination was not a sought-after soft skill in the employment process. However, those who did have a sharp imagination were able to invent new farming techniques and tools that drove society forward. Today, artificial intelligence and automation means that demand for non-imaginative work is declining, while the creative industry flourishes. Use hobbies such as roleplaying, comic book drawing, and filmmaking to teach your child to be creative. A round of Dungeons and Dragons will teach your child to think laterally, giving them a head start when they eventually enter the job market.

Learning the Rules of Social Interaction

Geekdom is a largely uniting force, bringing together people of all backgrounds around a common pastime. Although many hobbies are a solitary pursuit, most geeky games are best played with others. The more time your child spends across the chess board from a friend, the more chances they will have to develop their social skills. Empathy and communication skills allow a child to not just flourish in the workplace, but also to have stable and healthy relationships.

Encouraging the geek in your child will open them up to a world of opportunities. By engaging in a diverse range of hobbies, they will pick up the creative and social skills to be happy and successful later in life. So, dust off your old comic books and breakout the Warhammer figurines for the sake of your child’s intellectual and emotional development.

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