We at Play Unplugged realize that kids are going to play violent video games and watch TV somewhere, sometime no matter how much it may be discouraged. We also realize that video games, when developed using prosocial techniques, can result in very effective teaching tools. Our primary goal at Play Unplugged isn't to abolish all video games and television, but to help others recognize how media is influencing ones behavior and ask themselves if it's done in a positive or negative way. That way it becomes easier to know when one should make a change.
Our V-Tox challenge is designed to allow the brain to reset so that Dopamine levels can be reset and critical brain pathways can be re-built. If you're wondering what types of video games are considered safe, we promote what are called "prosocial" games. In other words, video games that promote a sense of empathy, caring, and ethics, including sharing, cooperating, helping others, generosity, praising, complying, telling the truth, defending others, supporting others with warmth and affection, nurturing and guid to do good. Games of this type coupled with sensible moderation and you're left with a highly effective teaching tool.
Why are prosocial games better then antisocial games? Recent research suggests that prosocial games have a substantial impact on the immediate behavior of those who play them.
In one example, an experiment was performed on 36 individuals. Half of them played a prosocial game, the other half played a neutral game. After finishing the game, a staged event occurred. An upset ex-boyfriend walked into the room to confront his ex-girlfriend and began to harass her. The researchers were interested to see which group would react to the situation. The outcome was striking. 10 out of the 18 participants who had been playing the prosocial game intervened to help the ex-girlfriend. However, only 4 out of the 18 participants who had been playing the neutral game did anything.
In other words, 8 minutes of playing a prosocial game in which you helped guide furry creatures safely to an exit appeared to increase the likelihood that people would stick their necks out for a stranger who was being harassed by an ex-boyfriend. - read more on the experiment here.
If you're curious what types of video games are considering prosocial, please see the following website - http://www.familyfriendlyvideogames.com/
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