Why Parents Should Play Video Games With Their Kids

– We don’t really play
games with our parents. – Oh, game playing, um… – Probably, maybe once a month. – Video games, I usually am like, no. – I haven’t really played
anything since the early 90’s. – Once a week? – Mmm. – [Kid] No, Dad.
(soft playful music) No, no. – Family learning, let me think. (chuckling) Let me think. When her and some kids get together to share experiences and
explore the world together. My name is Sinem Siyahhan. I’m an Associate Professor
of Educational Technology and Learning Sciences
at Cal State San Marcos. My gaming skills are average. (mooing) Sorry.
(laughs) I just wanna make sure
that I can get some meat out of this cow. My current work is inspired
by my experience as a child. Two parents are working long hours. They didn’t have enough energy and time to play with me and my brother, and we didn’t really get
to spend time together. I try to play with my son as much as I can. I value playing games. – Oh, there. – Yes. So, for example, here, we’re exploring the farm. (pig squeals) And we’re interacting with animals, and my son is learning (baby exclaims) what sound each animal makes. What does the sheep say? (imitates bleating) (chuckling) Mah, yes. Engaging in play is important, whether it is digital or non-digital play. We invite parents and
kids to play together. We’re fortunate to have Alienware provide gaming laptops for our families. – What I find really
interesting with Play2Connect, it helps families grow these
shared values together. Hey, Sinem, how’s it goin’? – It’s going well, how are you? – I’m doin’ well, did everything show up? – Yes, we have the laptops,
they’re ready to go. I believe I am making positive impact through video games. One of the problems that I
see is video games are framed as a context of conflict
between parents and kids. What I’m trying to do is to show parents and kids that video games could be a context for togetherness, collaboration, problem solving. Hello, everyone, welcome
to our Play2Connect event. Thank you for coming, we’re
really excited to have you here. (crosstalk) – [Woman] The light one. – Oh my gosh, look, you’re
stopping the water flow. – All right, we’re gonna
have parents and kids switch. – Now you need to start
capturing the animals. – And enter space – Ah, put it in there again. I got it, I got it, I got it. – No, Dad. You build it on top of that. – All right, let’s try to plant
seeds and see what happens. – (chuckling) What is happening? – [Kid] I have a plan. – [Man] What are we gonna do? – I have to clear it myself. – We put some lights on. Some more torches? (crosstalk) – At home, I’m tutoring her, now it’s the other way around. – A few times I did big mistakes, like flooded our cornfield. – It’s not corn, wheat. – Oh, wheat, see? – Did you enjoy the challenges? – Especially the chicken farm we made. Why does it have a skeleton in it? – It’s a lot more fun than I thought. It’s really interesting
watching him at work. – There’s just more value here
than I think I had imagined, that it could be really good quality time. And I’m surprised at how
patient he was with me. – You liked me doing it, and then you were tellin’ me, “good job.” That was cool. – It’s really important
that we shift the trend around video games and families, and really start thinking
about video games in terms of their potential to contribute to our lives. (pig snorts)
(baby exclaims) Yeah, that’s a pig! Where’s the pig? (grunts excitedly)

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