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To ask about your child's gaming habits? Advice please.

148 replies

ArsenalsPlayingAtHome · 12/05/2018 09:56

Basically I've let it all slide...I know my DS 12 yrs is spending ridiculous amounts of time playing Fortnight. I acknowledge it's my fault and I'm putting things in place as from this afternoon, as he will never voluntarily come off it ever!

He's in Y8.

Please can I ask how much time you allow your DCs spend on their PS4s/XBox, and their ages. Also if you think you've got the balance right?

Is it a constant battle?

Also, what chores are you chldren of similar (or older/younger) children doing? What else are they doing with their spare time?

Are they only allowed on if all HW & revision & chores are completed?

TBH I am annoyed at myself for allowing it to get so out of hand, and am determined to change.

I won't judge, far from it. I'm expecting and hoping lots of super organised parents to post, who have super regimented boundaries in place, but if there's anyone else out there in my position that would also help.


Dragging him off for a walk with dogs soon, but will definitely catch up on all the suggestions on our return.

OP posts:

Lethaldrizzle · 12/05/2018 14:57

Icantcope- genuine question. How is gaming 'highly beneficial' to kids?


ICantCopeAnymore · 12/05/2018 14:58

There are so many research papers looking into it - have a look on Google Scholar.

In a nutshell, it encourages literacy, numeracy, creative thinking, problem solving skills, fine motor skills, hand eye coordination and dexterity.

There are variables of course. Time spent playing games, what type of game etc.


ferriswheel · 12/05/2018 15:08

Im a teacher too.

My stbxh cant distinguish between his actual reality and the reality of his computer generated world.

I definitiely 'get it.'


Audree · 12/05/2018 15:13

Ds 13 as long as he wants, but no electronics after 9 pm.

  • make his bed every day
  • make his school lunch every morning
  • empty/fill the dishwasher every evening
  • clean his room once a week
  • sorting his clothes and putting them away after I wash them.

He also practises his instrument for an hour every evening and his sport three times a week, which limits his screen time.

Dd almost 9 about two hours a day. She’s not allowed screens when she has friends over, which is almost constantly, so that takes away from her screen time.
  • make bed every day
  • putting away her clean clothes
  • I’m planning to have her clean her room once a week when the new school year starts.

She also practises her instrument daily (around 30 min) and sports twice a week.

My advice: start small. Choose a chore and let him get used to it before adding another.

Good luck!

Lethaldrizzle · 12/05/2018 15:35

All I see when my kids are 'gaming' is a manic wild look in their eye and twitchy tense bodies. I don't buy it for a second


lemonsunshinecake · 12/05/2018 16:05

No limits as long as homework is always done. It always is.


lemonsunshinecake · 12/05/2018 16:07

Forgot to add though all electronics are switched off at 9pm and left to charge downstairs.


PaddingtonBearHardStare · 12/05/2018 16:17

Sorry to derail the thread, but what is Fortnite?? DS is 6 and we had a message from school yesterday advising primary school age children shouldn't be exposed to the game. I had never heard of it so just ignored it then stumbled across this thread. I clearly need to get with the programme before DS gets much older!!!


Smeaton · 12/05/2018 16:21

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MarieMorgan · 12/05/2018 16:22

Not before school or after 7.30pm. Otherwise no limit. Ds (10) does homework, tidies room, comes off when asked etc. We give advance notice re when he needs to come off so not in middle of game. Gaming very different from when I was young. No longer solitary pursuit. Ds plays online with school friends. I think fortnite is the new equivalent of team sports. So boys mostly are getting lots of experience of planning strategies, working together (they mainly play in squads) problem solving etc whereas the girls in his class seem to be spending most of their time falling out on social media. I wonder which prepares them better for working life! My dd's are a lot older. If they were youngsters now I'd much rather they were on fortnite than snap chat or whatever.


ICantCopeAnymore · 12/05/2018 16:24


Not if people parent correctly and turn off online chat capabilities.


Rufustheyawningreindeer · 12/05/2018 16:24

Ds2 is nearly 15

Another mother who lets him stay on whenever he likes

His school work isnt suffering and as long as he tidies his bedroom and the playroom when required and goes out for the day if we want him to or watches a film with us or plays board games when we want to then we leave him to it

He is very good...we get no complaints if we ask him to help with diy for 5 minutes or pop to the shop

Whan that stops then he will lose my goodwill and tolerance


Littlepond · 12/05/2018 16:24

DS age 14 plays as much as he wants, once homework is done. I e set time limits so he can’t play too late. Weekends he can play as much as he wants. When he first got his x box he had one Saturday where he racked up 12 hours of game play Shock but a few months in and he in at most 4 hours at the weekend, usually more like 2-3 and sometimes none. I’ve allowed him to self regulate and I believe he is doing that. Homework is always done and he is doing well at school.


Brokit · 12/05/2018 16:28

MarieMorgan* are getting lots of experience of planning strategies, working together (they mainly play in squads) problem solving etc
Fortnite seems to be the natural progression from Minecraft, it incorporates the planning and building skills and requires cooperation and teamwork.
Most kids don't play with randoms online they played with their real life friends.


PaddingtonBearHardStare · 12/05/2018 16:31


Thank you, it said something about potential for grooming in the message Shock


Rufustheyawningreindeer · 12/05/2018 16:52

Oh sorry should also say that he goes to bed when he is told, so again if this became a problem then he would have a problem


Smeaton · 12/05/2018 17:06

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ICantCopeAnymore · 12/05/2018 17:19

There isn't potential for grooming if your console's parental controls are set up correctly.


LillianGish · 12/05/2018 17:54

I really do fear for what happens when DC who've been micromanaged go off to uni, as they just won't have the independence or self-discipline skills needed to organise their own lives. Yes and no. I think if you become addicted to gaming at 12 there’s every chance you won’t make it to uni in the first place. Self-regulation is to be encouraged - my ds has self-regulated by refusing to get a console in the first place, but I think if you have a child who does nothing but game then as a parent it is your job to intervene. It’s like everything - fine in moderation, but if it gets to the point where you think being the last man standing in Fortnite is the equivalent achievement to being captain of your football team or learning a musical instrument or foreign language then you have a problem.


MrsDilber · 12/05/2018 17:58

I have a family member who, how he's an adult, has crippling social anxiety, because he lived his life indoors playing games. He's miserable and depressed, can't find a partner because he had barely any social interactions apart from school, where he didn't fit in because of it.

He is an extreme, I know, but please monitor it. It's so horrible seeing him, nearly 30 and miserable.


ManchesterGin · 12/05/2018 18:02

My y7 12 year old can go on fortnite

Monday, Wednesday and Friday 3.30-4.30 and then 7-8. He has to do any homework, shower and pack his bag for the next day before 7 or he doesn’t go back on.

He can choose a weekend day and have about 3 hours.

I think it’s probably at the stricter end but it works for us at the moment.


JacquesHammer · 12/05/2018 18:03

No rules here for 11 year old DD.

It was important to us that she learned to manage her own time. She’s got into her own routine of homework/club/visit family, then playing a little after dinner.

She usually quits an hour before bed to read.


Monr0e · 12/05/2018 18:22

DS is 11, year 7. He plays mainly Fortnite and Rocket League. I agree there is definitely a social aspect to it. He has struggled with settling in a new secondary school and being able to build friendships online has definitely helped him at school.

Like many on here he's allowed time as long as homework and revision are done and it's turned off a minimum of an hour before bedtime. He also does sport and reads every day. Hes not sllowed on a school morning.

At weekends he goes on when he gets up but most mornings he is arranging meet up with friends and they go off to the park in the afternoon. He's pretty good at coming off when told. Most days we agree a time e.g. do homework, have tea, tidy room then can go on. Sometimes he'll ask for a bit longer and providing everything is done it's usually fine. I think it's all a balance really.

If I felt it was getting too much or it was affecting his behaviour or he was struggling to come off it then I would definitely limit it more or stop him going on it altogether.


RoadToRivendell · 12/05/2018 18:24

My 12 year old is completely bonkers for Fortnight and it's doing my head in.

I ripped the cord out of his computer last week because it's gotten so out of hand.

Here's our new lineup:

Sunday 5pm - Friday after school - no computer
Friday night - unlimited
Saturday until 2pm unlimited
Saturday 2pm - Sunday 5pm - meted out based on how much schoolwork and sport he does.

fucking nightmare.


Mrscog · 12/05/2018 18:50

Yes to beneficial - DS was adding and subtracting in the millions and hundreds of thousands by 4.5 thanks to Fatming Simulator 16!

His hand eye coordination has also massively improved, and problem solving confidence since playing Jurassic world Lego through 2-3 times.

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