Teachers want “stringent legislation” against violent video games

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Hey! Teacher! Leave them kids alone...

Ah yes, it’s time for that old chestnut; the one where video games are blamed for all of society’s ills. A group of teachers, speaking at the UK’s Association of Teachers and Lecturers annual conference have called for more measures to be put in place to stop children from playing violent video games – because children are being lost in "fantasy worlds that separate them from reality" – and that it causes them to be more aggressive.

Oh, they’ve also said video games make you fat and make kids antisocial.

Primary school teacher Alison Sherratt said "We all expect to see rough and tumble, but I have seen little ones acting out quite graphic scenes in the playground and there is a lot more hitting, hurting and thumping in the classroom for no particular reason. Obesity, social exclusion, loneliness, physical unfitness, sedentary solitary lives – these are all descriptions of children who are already hooked to games … Sadly there is a notable correlation between the children who admit to playing games and those who come to school really tired."

Once again – and this is something I’ve talked about in the past – it all comes down to parenting. In this terrible modern society of ours, many career-focused parents seem to have forgotten that they actually need to put effort in to parenting – and not let videogames, film and TV do the child-minding for them – and no amount of legislation is going to change that.

It’s something many of the teachers do realise. ATL general secretary Mary Bousted said teachers are concerned that parents ignoring age ratings.

"The watershed tends to work quite well, but with online TV and video children and young people are probably watching inappropriate content over a range of media. It’s about reminding parents and carers that they have a very real responsibility for their children and that schools can’t do it alone."

Last Updated: April 4, 2012

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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