Diverse opinions at SEMHS on games being available online


Cesar Nunez, Features editor

We all know that feeling when you are tired of doing something and just want to unwind a bit even if you get that feeling in class. Some students might cure this boredom by playing games that are accessible on your school computer. There are many different kinds of games that are accessible through the internet. Though many people think that games just pose a distraction, others may disagree and counter with the fact that it can be a stress reliever, and actually make you more efficient. Although it does pose a problem when you are trying to research material or do your work online, and you decide to play games instead. This isn’t the fault of the game, if anything it is temptation right in front of you, a byproduct of 21st century digital learning, and sometimes you just can’t resist to stop working and have a little fun.

Ms. Van Empel, a teacher at South, stated, “As it is, teachers are fighting an uphill battle to get their students to focus on their work, and pay attention in class; we don’t need to make it even harder.” Although this is true, many students who also play games on their computer are finished with all their work, and just need a way to pass by the time and have a little fun. It is prevalent that there are students who play games just to do so instead of doing their work, but teachers can already see students’ screens, and see which students are the problems in this scenario. Something else Ms. Van Empel also mentioned is that “Students are already so easily distracted, and the temptation of games right in front of them would be too much for them to resist.” This is true but it mostly just depends on the student, and if they give in to the temptation of not doing the right thing. Students need to learn self restraint, and self discipline to be able to resist playing video games when they have an academic assignment to complete. 

Another teacher Ms. Casillas has also expressed her view on this by saying that “Students would play games instead of doing classwork. Students need to focus on their academics first.” It is inherent that some students do play games instead of focusing on their academics. Although this can be fixed by prohibiting any student to play games, this also punishes students that do their work and have good grades. A school wide ban on video games might discourage students from completing their work faster because they would not have a reward when finished. In addition student behavior problems might increase in the classroom without games serving as a distractor. 

However students have very different ideas. Donny Gomez, a freshman student at South, made his opinion known that he supported the availability of games on school computers by stating, “Games at South is a good thing; it can keep us entertained while we are in class. They are also a way of keeping us entertained during lunch and nutrition.” Not to mention that many learning websites also feature games that are educational, and some teachers may promote these games because they improve certain skills.

Another student, Abraham Cruz Nunez, added to this by saying that “Games being available on school computers can be a reward for students who finish their work early or for students who have really good grades.” This would also be a very good reward for teachers who think a student or multiple students deserve a reward for the work they have done. There are multiple diverse opinions, but I am most definitely leaning towards letting games be available on our school computers because of the same points mentioned by Abraham giving students rewards for finishing their work and for having good grades. Mr. Johnson said, “Part of the challenge of 21st century learning and having access to such a vast resource as the internet is being susceptible to distractions such as online gaming. Students must learn at work and in life they have to focus on their goals in a world full of constant distractions.”