Children with special needs have seen better emotional control, enhanced attention, and superior performance in school through playing specialized video games.
A video game to improve the cognitive ability for special needs children has been developed at the University of Victoria in British Columbia after years of research. Titled Dino Island, the game takes children with neurodevelopment disabilities on an island adventure where they face a series of progressive challenges specifically engineered to improve brain function.
These challenges automatically scale their difficulty based on player success or failure to keep gamers engaged. From the 35 tests so far, with hopes to expand, results have show improvement in memory and focus. With current trials focused on children with autism, it will be exciting to see how the game helps treat other disorders once the program expands.
Games help train the brain to problem solve in an enjoyable environment. Thus, game-based learning is nothing new, but it has been proven to increase the efficacy of learning. Therefore, the optimism that comes with realizing the cognitive benefits for neurodevelopment disabled children using game-based learning is entirely founded.
Since 1993 to 2017, there has been an increase in the U.S. of children aged 5 to 17 years old diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) from 6.3% to 10.7%. Thus, games like Dino Island will have a place in facilitate improved learning experiences for the many people who need them.
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