How to Choose and Use Video Games, Apps, and Social Media: A Guide for Clinicians

Clinicians can use a variety of methods to employ video games and other digital media in their therapeutic practice with children. Technology can be helpful in developing therapeutic relationships, preferably with fun and easy-to-play games such as Food Ninja or one of the many Angry Birds games. Therapists could also choose a technology such as YouTube to explore together with their clients, and the clients could talk to their therapists about their favorite YouTubers. Children would like demonstrating their interests to an adult, which might give you a few laughs together. Seeing their therapists enjoy this interaction could help them connect in therapy.

Many children could benefit from choosing a technology that works on improving a specific skill. For example, youngsters who have difficulty with impulsive behavior could gain from playing a game in which self-control is necessary. The therapist could play the game with the child or observe the child and make comments about the need for restraint in the game. There are many games in our search engine at LW4K that could be useful in this regard.

Therapists could also employ games that practice a variety of other skills such as organization, planning, and time management to work on with children in a therapy session. They could engage in “metacognitive” discussions in which children are encouraged to consider how game-based skills could be applied in real-world learning opportunities. Homework that goes along with the discussion that is focused on more game play is likely to be followed and could be useful in improving the skill. Engaging parents in the homework process would make therapy a fun experience in which skill development is clearly a part of the treatment and the homework. Check out our playbook for Minecraft.

Mastering a specific app could also be very useful in supporting a weak executive skill. For example, spending time learning how to use an app such as Evernote that improves organization could directly impact school performance. The therapist could discuss how this could be used to insure that homework is completed and that their extracurricular activities are prepared for and scheduled.

The LearningWorks for Kids Find Games and Apps page can help in  determining the best tool for any patient. To use it, choose games or apps, select a thinking/executive skill, and search. The search can be further refined with a variety of other features. We encourage you to explore the hundreds of games and apps playbooks that assist clinicians and parents in finding the best games and technologies to improve children’s executive-functioning skills.

Upgrade-Now-CTA

Related Posts

Can Video Games Improve Attention?

Watch children play video games and observe their attention and focus on the task at hand. For many kids, particularly those with ADHD, Learning Disabilities, or executive-functioning concerns, video […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Create Your Free Account

All membership plans come with full access to our entire suite of tools learning guides, and resources. Here are a few of the ones we think you’ll like the most:

  • Personalized learning profiles for up to 5 children.
  • Access to our complete library of technology learning guides.
  • A personalized stream of advice, articles, and recommendations.
  • And of course, lots, lots more…

Already have an account? Login →

×

Login

Don't have an account? Sign up now! →

Forgot Your Password?

×