I have mixed feelings about this AP story, which is about a library that has set up a place for kids to play video games. On the one hand, I do think it’s a great way to draw kids into the library and expose them to what it has to offer, but being a reader at heart, I can’t help but wonder if it might encourage some potential readers to skip over the books and other resources the library provides in favor of more easily accessible entertainment.
This library in Arizona is part of a new project launched by the American Library Association that aims to build gaming programs in more libraries and conduct research on how gaming affects student literacy skills, says the article.
Despite my concerns about gaming in libraries, researching video games, what they teach, and how they can work in tandem with traditional teaching methods is definitely something I support. If nothing else, getting a firmer grasp on the benefits and drawbacks of video games can only help inform educators’ teaching methods. I’ll definitely be watching this gaming research to see how it turns out.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Motivation Matters blog.