Computer Games Good for Kids' Brains, Researchers Say
No, "Super Mario" does not qualify.
However, the London Daily Mail reports the folks at Nintendo are promoting games that stimulate the mind and improve children's IQs. There are compelling reasons to do so, given the fresh research.
According to the newspaper, psychologists at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor tested 62 children with an average age of 8.
Half the kids played video games that tested their memories for 15 minutes a day. The games focused on their "working memory" -- the brain's ability to hold information while it solves a problem. The rest of the kids spent the same period testing their general knowledge and vocabulary.
Even three months after the test, researchers found, the kids who played the computer games were doing better on tests of abstract reasoning and problem solving.
"The current findings add to the literature demonstrating that brain training works, and that transfer effects may even persist over time," lead researcher Susanne Jaeggi tells the Mail.
But don't go out and buy your kid a new computer game just yet.
The Daily Mail adds a study two years ago at Stirling University in Scotland found some kids didn't benefit at all from using the games while others shot from the bottom to the top of their classes.
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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.