Surprising Ways Video Games Are Actually Good for Girls

girls video gamesOkay, picture a kid playing video games. Bet that imaginary gamer in your mind is a boy, right? Video games and guys so often go hand in hand -- or controller in hand, to be more precise -- that we sometimes forget all about the females out there who love to play, too. But guess what? Not only should we remember that girls like video games, we should actually encourage girls to play them. Seriously! Studies show that girls between the ages of 11 and 16 benefit from playing video games in a whole bunch of ways, including better behavior, a closer connection to family, and a greater sense of mental well-being.

Who knew? Of course, there is a catch (or two). Any old video game played any which way won't do the trick. If you want your girl to reap the positive rewards of video games, keep these tips in mind:

1. Games should be age-appropriate. Meaning, nothing crazy-violent. The good news? Girls show less interest in those types of games anyway.

2. Games should be played WITH a parent. Video games are an especially effective way for dads and daughters to bond, it turns out.

3. Don't go overboard. Stick to the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations regarding screen time: Two hours a day max. (Not a bad rule of thumb for parents, either!)

Everything in moderation, right? Guess girls really do just wanna have fun.

Do you play video games with your daughter?


Image via Rodrigo Della Favera/Flickr

activities, behavior, news, family


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nonmember avatar American Expat

Yeah my stepdaughter and I love playing shooters together. I think she gets entirely too much fun from getting headshots on me lol.

fraoch fraoch

I've played video games since Atari (Pit Fall and Frogger were my favorites) - I've had all the nintendo platforms & sega platforms (zelda, mario and sonic woo hoo!) and all of, except for the newest version of playstation....and now we have xbox.

I love video games. Love them. My girls, b/c of me, love them. My husband...isn't a big fan. He likes CoD, but I'm the one who's in line waiting for a new game to come out. I'm the one losing sleep b/c she can't put down the controller.

Girls like video games.

nonmember avatar jay

Why is this an article? It doesn't dive into the subject on why video games are good for girls it just links to other people discussing the topic.

Also, the title of this article could be offensive. Why is it a surprise that girls benefit from playing video games? Should it be a surprise at all that girls are playing? Let's stop putting down girls and women and reword this "article". How about "Studies are showing new ways that girls benefit from playing video games." I shouldn't be a surprise that girls can and are playing video games.

nonmember avatar American Expat

@ jay - decades old gender stereotypes, i.e., the geeky nerdy MALE teen or the loser adult man are the stereotypical video game players. Even now, this is still a strong stereotype, in spite that market research shows female gamers are almost half the players.

paren... parentalrights1

I love violent games. I love to scalp people.

paren... parentalrights1

And I got the first copy of of Skyrim at the store in my town when it came out. I went up there and waited for midnight the night before and got the first one

Death... Deathlilly

There are so many girl gamers out there, myself included, that I don't understand why it's still so shocking when girls play games.

nonmember avatar ...

My husband and our daughter play video games together. He's a gamer at heart and its a great way for them to bond after he's had a long day at work. He gets to relax and game for a while and she gets to play games with daddy :)

Water... Water_geM

i love violent games..espcially with large swords or war hammers :)

jessi... jessicasmom1

I let DD play all the games she wanted and still playing now she is 12

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