Where Did The ̶ ̶P̶O̶T̶U̶S̶ Bad Man Touch The ̶I̶v̶a̶n̶k̶a̶ ¹ Doll?
(Games As Teaching Tools)
I have, in the Past, had a lot of fun with simulation games. Sim Tower in particular.
But that was just for fun — albeit The Sims isn’t actually fun and they were more acts of desperation … unconscious cries for help … than the pursuit of enjoyment/entertainment as such.
What I’d like to examine here, is such games’ potential as educational tools.
Leaving aside the ways some of the games (such as Sim Life) can lead to embarrassing conversations about genetics (sex!) … or, worse yet, contraception (sex²) … with your kids, there are many ways in which they can be used to examine matters that might be troubling your child.
Obviously, Sim Tower, can be used to explore the life opportunities available to the financially less well off ‘blue collar’ classes but, I can’t remember, for instance, if any of the first few versions of Sim City showed any people of non-white ethnicity, so that would be a good way to examine endemic racism with your children … or a class, if you’re a teacher — even if it should transpire there were, it’s a good way of broaching the topic by looking at why there might even be a question about it to begin with.
Sim Copter, allowed the player to pilot a helicopter through city maps from saved Sim City games and could, therefore, be used to examine why … given the absolute ghetto hellhole your child/class has constructed whilst inexpertly playing Sim City… the character they are roleplaying as a pilot in Sim Copter might be motivated to crash their aircraft into a high-rise à la 9/11. You could have them crash the helicopter into various buildings and, afterwards, examine whether there might have been alternative targets that might have resulted in greater devastation, greater loss of life, which might be more desirable to the pilot and why.
The Movies could be a platform for examining exploitation by questioning the merits of the paparazzi’s intrusion into the actors’ lives resulting in greater fame/notoriety and, therefore, more income for the studio/actors: who really benefits from this (paparazzo, paper/magazine, actor(s), studio) and how is it any different to prostitution or pornography? You could even get your child/class to write and film a porno in the game, examining the tropes of the genre (the Nazi costumes would be particularly good for S&M, the monster/alien costumes for bestiality, young actresses for paedophilia), including what typical porn movie dialogue says about attitudes towards women in general and their sexuality specifically.
The Sims Online could be the starting point for an exploration of bullying, harassment, sexism, racism, homophobia. Whatever topic you can think of, your child/class can go online and engage in those behaviours in a controlled environment, in which nobody knows the real age, sex, location, gender, sexuality, ethnicity (or whatever) of the complete strangers with whom they interact. So, not only can you elicit their own feelings and thoughts when they are victimised themselves but they can interview the other players afterwards, safe in the knowledge that the answers given will not be influenced by their knowledge of your child’s/class’ protected characteristics and will, therefore, be entirely based upon their perception of those of the avatar — is lesbian rape with a candlestick, pool cue (or whatever) different to heterosexual rape … how does your child/class feel about bullying a stranger’s avatar possessing their own real world ethnicity with racial slurs … what if the sexual predator is (seemingly) a child (their avatar is a child) … etc.?
Current affairs can be handled as well as ongoing or universal matters.
Minecraft, for instance could be used to look at property destruction by attacking other players online. Or, again, The Sims Online could prove a useful laboratory by examining the effects of everything from mass gatherings on someone else’s property to occupation thereof, vandalism/destruction, etc.
Sim City can be used to examine the cause, effects and aftermath of rioting
A riot happens if a city's population becomes very unhappy with the mayor's choices, or if they are being deprived of…
If your child/class has hacking skills, you could get them to create a mod for Microsoft Flight Simulator that would allow them to examine everything from the spread of Covid-19 in an enclosed space to the most effective strategy for beating antisocial assholes to the floor, tying them up and forcibly masking them when they are sitting in the middle row in the Budget Class section of the plane.
Another way they can be used is in the development of linguistic and comprehension skills.
For instance, note the misuse of the term ‘riot’ here
As you can see, there are many ways in which even the seemingly unlikeliest of games can be put to use as catalysts and tools to aid in the exploration of a variety of topics about which your child/class might have questions but not know how to go about addressing (especially if they and/or their parents are a bit dim).
All it takes is a little imagination on your/their part
And the game, obviously (duh, what are you, retarded?)
¹ There is no question of my suggesting here that remarks. by the POTUS concerning his daughter’s body and how he would ‘date’ her, if he weren’t her father, are indicative of incestuous (let alone paedophile) tendencies (never mind acts) on his part at any time in the Past, Present or Future — get that idea out of your head now.
² If you ask her nicely, I’m sure Aura will be able to give you all kinds of tips on how to embarrass your kids by starting a conversation about “sex for fun rather than simply procreation”.