Thursday, January 27, 2011

It's Official! My Daughter Is a Gamer!

My daughter loves her computer time! We let her have an hour a day (if there is time). She loves to watch videos at the PBS kids website or the National Geographic website. She loves to play video games at these sites too! She's actually found healthy recipes at the PBS website that she is kind enough to pass on to me. She uncovered a really awesome roasted chicken recipe that is one of my dinner staples (meaning I like to make it every other day since I do not have too many different recipes that I like to make).

In the past, she has seen kids play hand-held video games that she loves to watch. She's discovered the Nintendo DS about two years ago. As interested as she's been when other kids have played theirs, she had surprisingly never asked for one of her own. Until just before the holidays a couple of months ago. When I mentioned this to my husband, he said, "Did you tell her no?" We've been hesitant about getting her this since we didn't want her mindlessly zoning out on video games that she would tantrum about when she had to put the game down. It just seemed like a bad idea!

When her birthday was approaching, we were really didn't know what to get her. We wanted to get her the latest Leapster, the Leapster Explorer. The ratings on it didn't seem that great, and she really seemed to be getting too old for the Leapster, particularly considering how advanced her reading level is. So, we searched for other educational systems, even considering getting her an iPod Touch, which just seemed like a bad idea.

I looked into the latest version of Nintendo's DS, the DSi. It was very highly reviewed, and I was surprised to find out it had many educational games available! One current drawback was that it had Wifi and was internet accessible. We just weren't ready to have our daughter surfing the web on her own. At home, we really restrict the websites she could visit. This problem was easily solved by putting a security code in to lock up the internet browser.

As we were contemplating taking this leap, my husband kept asking, "Should we do this? Are we making a huge mistake?" He asked this repeatedly (that's his nature. He tends to worry a little). We eventually decided to go for it with the internet restricted and with limiting her playing time on it to an hour a day, on days that she has the time to fit it in. Ironically, after my husband bought it and tested it out a bit, he asked me pointedly, "Why did you wait so long to tell me about this? This is great!" Gee, I thought we both were against it! LOL

My daughter does like her DSi, although it frustrates her a bit. I think it will take her some time to get used to it. She already warned her crush at school that they won't be able to chat with each other on their DSis since her internet was disabled! Whew, I could just see her sending him love notes!

I wonder how long we'll be able to keep her internet access disabled!

12 comments:

  1. My mom got Katie the DS for her bday last year. We didn't get the one with wifi, though, just the regular one. She still plays with her Leapster too, which has more educational games so I kinda like it better. The DS does frustrate her a lot with some games, though. I think she still prefers to play online, and still loves pbskids and nickelodeon...ha.

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  2. I am glad I didn't have to worry about gaming consoles that had ready internet access when my sons were little. Both of my sons are gamers and are PROUD to be part of the gaming community. They even went to a big gaming convention last March in Boston and came back with huge amounts of SWAG! I hope your daughter enjoys her DSi!

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  3. internet access is a big problem here since my son loves computers and knows how to type in things that he shouldn't and knows his way around codes etc.

    and the leapster explorer we decided against since there is a warning on it about flashing lights etc causing seizures (for ppl with epilepsy)...well being that he takes things literally he thinks he will have one too and gets scared. But the original leapster doesn't have that warning on it so he is fine with that one.

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  4. We just took the leap with the Nintendo Wii, because there are a lot of active games on it, as well as educational and just plain fun. Though we really have to limit their time, they've really enjoyed it, and mom and dad are addicted to Mario. Now they're asking for DSi...but we're deciding how much "gaming" stuff we really want to give them. I think, for now, computers and the Wii are enough!

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  5. *coughs* We have 3 of them in this house and love them, my husband and I both play too, often sharing games with our son taking a team effort appraoch. I have also found it very useful for problem solving, hand eye co-ordination and learning how to cope with frustration (the last was the most difficult btw) so yaaaay, I hope she gets many hours of happiness out of it :D Jen

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  6. none of my kids have the key to the internet either, whew!

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  7. My son just turned into a gamer too! We did get the Explorer for him, I mean Santa got it for him, for Christmas. he absolutely loves it, would play for hours a day. But you are right, definitely too young for your daughter. Some of the stuff is easy for my guy and he is 4.

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  8. I don't get the whole gaming thing.. I guess thats a good thing. I've got the blogger thing, that is enough. I guess its all good in moderation. I forget how old your daughter is?

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  9. Our son is asking for a DS for his 6th B-day which is just around the corner. We, like you, are very hesitant.

    He can get so caught up in things. I'm worried we wouldn't be able to keep him off it. I'm still on the fence.

    On the flipside, I think I would like one:)

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  11. DSI's ,Ipod touch (christopher got one for his b-day from my sisters..remind me to hit them..) I spend my whole life now looking for them because my kids cant remeber what they did with them..the chargers etc... I agree w./ the whole internet thing.. i was contemplating that myself...HUGS!!!!

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  12. I can see myself worrying when the time comes for Little Lewie. As it is, my little boy is already caught up in the cell phone craze...I think you made a great choice to buy it for her but to disable the internet. I remember having Atari at seven, and you couldn't get me to stop playing Pac Man and Pitfall...I think our gamer generation turned out all right...

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