Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve already heard about Pokemon Go — the record-breaking app with the most first-week downloads in App Store history released on July 1st. I’m not sure if this augmented reality Pokemon Go app is here to stay or if it’s just a passing fad. What I do know is that despite receiving most first- week downloads it’s no longer the top free iPhone app in Apple’s app store. I also know that everyone is talking still talking about it and that it seems to be much more than just a kids game.
When I first heard about it I got all excited too! Not necessarily because I myself am some kind of Pokemon master or anything like that, but my kiddo sure thinks he is. The hubs is a huge Pokemon fan too and Pokemon battles happen often at our house!
Naturally, when I heard about this new free Pokemon Go app, I immediately thought it would be something really cool for my kiddo to try out this summer.
But wait, then I started hearing all these crazy stories. I had to quickly rethink this.
Yes, my first instinct was to let my kid in on this Pokemon Go app thing but then all those crazy stories started swirling around on social media. I know you’ve seen them on your feed. There’s also been a lot of talk about concerns with the app’s use of GPS tracking. So I decided to sit back, keep my lips zipped for a bit longer (the kiddo doesn’t know yet), and just observe.
I haven’t downloaded the app just yet. And I’m glad that school’s on summer break because this means my big boy hasn’t heard about the Pokemon Go app from his friends just yet. This buys me a bit more time to investigate. I feel like I need to do a bit more homework on this one before I give in! Like is common with all other new tech products, I’m sure many changes will come to the Pokemon Go app in the weeks and months ahead.
Are you in the same boat? Are you wondering if the Pokemon Go app is appropriate for your kiddos? With all the stories swirling around you have to be a bit skeptic, I’m sure!
Or maybe it’s too late. Maybe your kids are already hooked? Either way, there still tons of info being thrown at us every day about this recent Pokemon Go phenomenon.
Read 0n – I’ll share what I’ve learned so far – the good, the bad, and the hilarious. Maybe it’ll help you come to your own educated conclusions of what’s best for your kids and your family.
But before I share that, If your kids are already hooked let me share with you 3 tips for parents. These tips will help keep everyone safe and on the same page when playing Pokemon Go.
Playing with the Pokemon Go App – 3 Tips for Parents
Learn What it’s About
Don’t let your kids go blindly into this (or any other video game or app for that matter). Do your homework! Download the app yourself and give it a test run. Notice any areas that may be of concern and take note of these.
Talk About It
Don’t just hand over your iPhone and let this be a free for all! Have a conversation with your kid. Talk about the benefits and risks of playing this game. Discuss safety! It’s probably a good idea to talk about how easy it is to get caught up in the game and not realize that you have wandered too far. Talk about the places they are allowed to go and the places that are off limits.
Set Some Rules
Like I said, don’t allow it to be a free for all! Set boundaries and limits. Set a schedule and time limits for how long they can play. Talk about when and where the game can be played. Do they need to ask permission before playing? For younger children especially, you may want to set up rules about playing with a partner; a friend, sibling, parent or other family member should tag along for safety.
Everyone and their mothers pretty much has an opinion about Pokemon Go these days. You could waste away hours in front of your screen reading through ALL of them! I won’t give you my opinion on the game itself, but I have rounded up a few links from trusted sources. It’s what I’ve been reading to learn more about the new Pokemon Go craze.
Click, read, and you decide! Is the Pokemon Go app right for your kid?
And make sure to read on to the end of this post! As parents, I think you’ll get a really good laugh – It’s hilarious! 😉
The Good: Consider this
Common Sense Media’s Review of Pokemon GO – Common Sense Media is my first go-to anytime I’m checking into a new app my kid wants to play. Common Sense Media is the leading independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology. You should know that they offer the world’s largest collection of ratings and reviews for media content for kids. And they recently released their review of Pokemon Go. They make many valid points here. Notice that they also rated this app as being appropriate for kids ages 13+.
Is Pokemon GO Safe for Kids? – This article in Today’s Parent highlights things you should worry about when letting your kids play. It lists helpful tips for safety, and even discusses some of the benefits of the game.
Everything you need to know about Pokemon Go: The good, the funny, and the very scary – The ladies over at Cool Mom Tech have also done their homework! They’ve rounded up some of the best Pokemon Go links from around the web. They really did include everything you need to know!
Dear idiots: Stop ruining ‘Pokémon Go’ with all your nonsense – This article featured by Digital Trends does make many valid points about why people are hating on Pokemon Go and why they should just stop it. Not sure I completely agree but it does give you something to think about…
Could Pokemon Go Change Education?
3 Ways Pokémon GO Can Create Meaningful Learning Opportunities – And even educators are jumping on the Pokemon Go bandwagon. As an educator myself, I can’t ignore this. As a parent, I think it’s important to be aware that this is where education is headed. Virtual reality is coming to our classrooms, people! This article from EdTech Magazine gives you an idea of how teachers may want to use Pokemon Go as a teaching tool in the classroom.
A Beginning Resource Collection On Pokemon Go & Education – And taking it even a bit further, many teachers are currently exploring the value of bringing Pokemon Go into their classroom. Larry Ferlazzo does a great job here of rounding up many of the ideas that teachers are sharing. Just thought you might want to see what they’re saying. Who knows, your kid might just walk into class this coming September and find that his/her next project includes Pokemon Go. Wouldn’t that be something?
Five Things Education Technology Could Learn from Pokémon Go – As a teacher myself, I must admit that I’m a bit obsessed with the use of EdTech in my classroom. Therefore, I just couldn’t ignore this interesting article. When you really think about it, I guess there really could be a lot to learn from Pokemon Go.
The Bad: Don’t ignore this
Pokémon Go Privacy Settings: What you really need to know about the app permissions hype – This TrustedReviews.com post does a great job rounding up everything you need to know about this location based app and its privacy settings. It really is scary to think how much information one little app can gather about you, and your kid. Parents beware! Please!
‘Pokémon Go’ Launch Faces String of Robberies, Crimes, and Car Accidents – And here are more of those crazy stories I mentioned before. If your kid is going to play Pokemon Go you should be aware that stuff like this can happen. It’s bad, I know, but the more you know, the better equipped you’ll be to discuss these type of dangers with your kids before they play.
Pokémon Go Could Be A Death Sentence For A Black Man – Considering all the recent events happening in our country, it’s interesting to hear this Pokemon Go app user’s take on the racial implications for Pokemon Go players of color. Gives you something to consider as a parent, I think.
The Hilarious: Laugh at this!
Now tell me you wouldn’t play this game? Chardonnay GO! Yes, please! 😉
And if you’re kids are already playing, I’m sure you can relate to this! Hahaha! Don’t you just love a good ol’ Holderness Family video? I sure do! Hahaha!
Are you ready to catch ’em all? Or planning to sit this one out? Would love to hear your take on the Pokemon Go app. Share in the comments section below.