This video game can help kids control their anger
Children are an energetic bunch. Sometimes, for various reasons, children become very angry—so angry, in fact, that parents become helpless and send them in for psychological and even psychiatric treatment, which may include medication. Naturally, the angry kids tend to resist these efforts as well, but how can they resist a computer game?
With that in mind, two doctors from Boston's Children Hospital set out to the task and developed RAGE Control (which stands for Regulate and Gain Emotional Control). This is a regular shooting game, complete with bad guys and good guys, but there's one difference: When the players gets too angry, they can no longer shoot their enemies unless they calm down.
Here's how it works: A heart rate monitor is attached to one of the your fingers, and every time your pulse goes over a certain threshold, you lose the ability to shoot the enemy spaceships. When you calm down again, and your pulse slows down, you regain the ability to happily defeat your enemies.
According to a study by Peter Ducharme, a clinical social worker at the Boston Children's Hospital, children who played RAGE for 15 minutes as part of their treatment were better at controlling their heart rate than children who didn't. Does this mean they could actually control their anger better too? I'm not entirely sure, but playing a video game sure beats being medicated, so for now, this seems like a good enough strategy.
Do you think RAGE is a good way to help kids?