An opinion piece in Wired Magazine points out that our schools aren't doing a very good job teaching our children how to think. Instead, they've gone on a "back to basics" path, with standardized testing, and teaching kids how to memorize facts. However, after school, these kids play video games - and those video games are what really teach kids how to think. The article suggests that video games are "an agent of mental training", which is a different premise than you usually hear, and is a refreshing change from all the articles complaining about violence in video games. This article points out that video games present children with real challenges and puzzles (even the violent ones) that force them to think, make decisions, create, and learn consequences of their actions in ways they're not learning in school. It also points out that the games really challenge kids to push their mental ability to the next level. Most games let you master a lower level, before trouncing you at the next level - forcing you to rethink what you're doing, and figure out a new strategy, and ways to improve. Unfortunately, this is something that our school system doesn't do enough.
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