As a homeschool mom I had visions of what my homeschool and house would look like. I dreamed of long days curled up on the couch reading classical literature and long walks looking for bugs. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be competing with games.
Now some of you may be rolling your eyes and wondering if I’ve lived my life under a rock to think I’d escape the lure of gaming. Well in all honesty I have never like playing. When I was younger my family had the original apple with games I can’t even remember. My brother had an Atari, which was ok, I was never good at Nintendo and my siblings played so often I never stood a chance. College came around and spending hours on a screen after graphic school all day was the last place I wanted to be. So I dreamed something radically different.
I have read all the posts and articles scaring every mother about the dangers of games. Before I had even researched the game in question I was ok casting it aside like a bad drug. My husband and I became vigilant and some would say over protective. We are still vigilant but rather then saying no we, meaning my husband, play too.
Our two children ages 10 and 13 play video games.
We started with Minecraft because I am continually amazed at what they are able to build and what they find joy in while building. Later we added the original Xbox because my husband had one collecting dust and we wanted to see how our 13 year old would handle the responsibility, and just yesterday our family was gifted an Xbox One.
My son was so excited to get his hands on this gaming system and truthfully I was pretty excited to say yes.
We have rules in our house like;
- school comes first, yes even Latin!
- our attitudes must reflect who we are trying to become in Christ.
- we treat each other respectively
- we do our part to clean the house
- we are a family and gaming cannot take place of human interaction.
- we respect the rules of our friends parents and if they don’t allow gaming we do not either.
- the gaming consoles are in the center of our house and monitored regularly
- never do I allow them to talk to random people online.
There is not a perfect solution to the gaming culture we live in but I have found it to be more fun allowing them their space to play then not. We have an environment in our home for learning and this is a huge learning opportunity for everyone.
We still have our school day more or less how I imagined it to be and video games are the new reward they’ll work hard for. So I am learning to be ok with what makes them enjoy their time off.
Tell me your thoughts in the comments about gaming in your house. Do you allow it? Why or why not?