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Toys and Technology: Change for the Better


Toys and Technology: Change for the Better By: Jenna Witherite March 23,2009 Spring 2009 Science and Technology Nora Demers (Instructor) Toys and Technology: Change ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Toys and Technology: Change for the Better

Toys and Technology Change for the Better
  • By Jenna Witherite
  • March 23,2009
  • Spring 2009 Science and Technology
  • Nora Demers (Instructor)

Toys and Technology Change for the Better
  • Issue Technological advances in toys but in
    video games in particular have the potential to
    be harmful for children.
  • Stance Technological advances that have
    influenced toys have had a positive influence on
    the toy industry and a positive influence on
    society. Toys have, in fact, advanced to the
    point where they are more than just entertainment
    for children.

  • 1972 Magnavox introduces Odyssey, the first
    video Game system.

  • 1976 Warner Bros. begins to market Atari. It was
    the first video game system to run arcade style

  • 1983 Nintendo Game Systems introduces a whole
    video game system. Advanced Japanese technology
    give the games realistic sound, 52 colors and
    high speed action.

  • 1989 Gameboy, a battery powered, hand held
    videogame system is released.

  • 1995 Sony Releases the play station in the United

  • 2006 Nintendo introduces the Wii. The first
    interactive video game to encourage physical

Video Games
  • Probably the biggest technological influence on
    toys was the advances in video and electronics
    technology that made the first video games
    possible in the 1970s. These early video games
    were black and white and had extremely primitive
    graphics as compared to the video games of today.
  • Odyssey and Atari game systems hold little appeal
    to the gamers of today.
  • Nintendos Gameboy made video games portable,
    giving kids the means to amuse themselves during
    long, or even not so long, waits, making the kids
    and those around them much happier. Thats a bit
    of technology that I can be thankful for, for

Video Games
  • Japanese electronic technology brought the Sony
    Play Station to the market in 1995.
  • Not to be outdone by Sony, Nintendo introduced
    the Wii game system in 2006. Wii is the first
    game system that encourages the user to get up
    and interact with the game.
  • Wii is the antidote to video game couch potato

Video Game Concerns
  • By the end of the 70s, video games had become a
    preferred childhood play activity. Concerns began
    to grow that video game play and the amount of
    time spent playing would be harmful to children.
  • Rating systems have been developed both in the
    U.S. and Europe to help identify video games with
    excessively violent themes and adult content, but
    since there is no one standard and retailers are
    not bound by the ratings, the rating systems
    mostly serve to identify the games so kids can
    easily pick out the violent, adult-themed games.

Video Game Concerns
  • Numerous studies have been done with regard to
    how video game violence translates to violent
    behavior in real life. Some studies suggest
    that video game violence may carry over into
    real life.
  • The main problem with drawing a firm conclusion
    is that the studies have, traditionally been done
    on adolescents, who by nature, tend to be more
    aggressive. Also, no serious, long term study has
    been done. It is generally accepted that
    continued exposure to violent video games can
    lead to aggressive behavior.
  • Another concern regarding video game play is that
    it is a sedentary activity and contributes to
    childhood obesity.

  • A study by Mayo Clinic obesity researcher
    Lorraine Lanningham-Foster, Ph.D., confirmed that
    kids that play video games that require
    movement, they burn more energy than they would
    while sitting a n playing traditional screen
    gameschildren very focused on video games
    can be made healthier if activity is a required
    part of the game. (Adding Activity, 2007)

Video Games that Help
  • The most important technological advances in toys
    are the continued discoveries of ways that toys
    can help us. The most obvious of these are the
    educational video game applications that teach
    everything from foreign languages to algebra to
    how to fly an airplane or drive a race car.
  • Video games are showing promise in teaching
    science, technology, engineering and mathematic
    applications. Games can be adapted to the pace of
    the student/user, games reinforce information
    already learned. Games appeal to a variety of
    learning styles and, as previously noted, can be
    adjusted to the pace of the learner.

Video Games that Help
  • Another important discovery in the toys/
    technology/ medical field is the discovery that
    playing the computer game Tetris helps ease
    Post-traumatic stress.
  • The sooner the game is played after the traumatic
    experience, the more relief the victim seems to
    get from it. (Playing Tetris, 2009) PTSD is most
    often associated with returning combat troops,
    but it can be caused any traumatic event
    hurricane, accident, flood, abuse, acts of
    violence and earthquake as well as combat.
  • Playing Tetris soon after any of these traumatic
    events reduced the effects of PTSD, feelings of
    being alone, helplessness, and hysteria,

Video Games that Help
  • In a study done by the Department of Psychiatry
    at the University of Oxford, Oxford, England, 40
    participants were shown a 12-minute film of
    traumatic scenes of injury and death.
  • After a 30 minute break, half played Tetris for
    10 minutes while the other half sat quietly. They
    were asked to keep track of how many flashbacks
    to the trauma scenes they experienced during that
    10 minutes. Significantly fewer flashbacks were
    recorded by the group playing the game as opposed
    to those who sat quietly. They were asked to
    track their flashbacks and return to the lab
    after one week. Tetris players experienced
    fewer flashbacks than those who did not play
    Tetris and their other symptoms were less severe.
    ( Holmes, 2009) ( Figure 1 below)

Figure 1
Video Games that Help
  • Returning after one week, the participants were
    also asked to recall the details of the film.
    Both sets of participants were able to recall the
    significant details of the film, so actual,
    voluntary recall was not affected, just the
    occurrence of flashbacks.( Holmes, 2009) (Figure
    2, below)

Figure 2
  • One thing to remember, though, is that no matter
    how advanced toys and video games become,
    parental guidance is still important. Just as we
    dont want television raising our children, we
    dont want video games to be the last work in
    acceptable behavior, either. Parents must be
    involved with helping their children learn to
    make good choices.

  • Video games will probably become more
  • Toys will continue to be more user friendly for
    children with limited motor skills.
  • Researchers will continue to find more ways that
    video games can be used to teach.