The reason boredom is actually good for children

The reason boredom is actually good for childrenAs it turns out, “I’m bored, Mom” could be one of the best things a parent can hear.

That’s the conclusion of counselor and author Archibald Hart, who believes that our media-crazed, constantly stimulated culture is harming the creativity and imagination of children. Hart and his daughter, Sylvia Hart Frejd, appeared on Focus on The Family’s radio broadcast recently, and if you have children who play video games or desire to do so, I’d encourage you to listen. And after you do, you just might pick up your child and flee the next time someone hands him or her that Wii controller.

The theme of the broadcast (which is in two parts) is “Protecting Your Child From the Digital Invasion.” They say parents should avoid flocking to media every time their child is looking for something to do. When kids are bored, Hart says, they are forced to use their imagination.

Among their somewhat shocking conclusions:

  • Constant stimulation with video games and media actually changes the brain – so much so that in some instances, the damage cannot be undone.
  • Video games can harm a child’s ability to read a person’s emotions.
  • Video games are designed to be addictive, trapping the gamer for dozens of hours. In fact, Hart says video games are as addictive to the brain as is pornography.

They provide suggestions for using video games and media and no, their answer isn’t to take a sledge hammer to the PlayStation and Xbox.

They are the author of Digital Invasion: How Technology is Shaping You and Your Relationships.

Listen to the show by clicking here:

Michael Foust is an editor and writer who blogs about parenting and fatherhood. He loves his family and also really likes popcorn. Interested in re-posting this in your publication or on your blog for free? Send me a message in the comments section below (the message won’t go public).

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Turn it off: 6 reasons not to let children watch television

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