如何MINECRAFT.is helping children with autism make new friends

Playing video games online can be antisocial – but the Autcraft community is helping children with autism learn social skills and build relationships

出售伟德账号 27 April 2016

MINECRAFT.

My, what blue wool you have

Veryan Dale/Alamy Stock Photo

LIKE many constructions, it started small. But now thousands of children with autism are making friends and learning social skills by playing a version of online building gameMINECRAFT.

Stuart Duncan通过一个受欢迎的博客得到了这个想法,他逃跑了他自己的自闭症的经历,以及带着自闭症的儿子。与自闭症儿童的其他父母开始告诉他,他们的孩子们对让他们的游戏疯狂探索随机生成的荒野。然而,尽管爱游戏,但许多孩子被其他球员欺负。

因此,在2013年,邓肯,一个Web开发人员在Timmins,Canada,设置了一个服务器运行版本MINECRAFT.专门为具有自闭症及其家人的孩子。他认为邀请的服务器将吸引10或20人。他的惊喜,数百人要求在最初的几天里加入。

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Now, almost three years later, running “Autcraft” is his full-time job. The community boasts nearly 7000 members, along with a team of admins to help manage its many activities. “Parents see such a benefit for themselves and their children,” says Duncan.

MINECRAFT.strips away the pressures and distractions of the real world. You can really just be yourself“

服务器在加利福尼亚大学伊维林捕获了凯特林兰的眼睛。她在这个虚拟世界里度过了60个小时,看着孩子们如何互相播放和聊天。Ringland看到Autcraft不仅仅是另一个在线社区,而是一种帮助自闭症儿童练习社交技能的工具。她将在下个月在加利福尼亚州加利福尼亚州圣何塞的计算会议上展示她的工作因素。

MINECRAFT.,you manipulate blocks of materials like wood and stone to build whatever you like – from painstaking recreations of cities to simple computers. “This is a great way for them to play a game they love, but also have a social experience,” says Ringland. “It’s giving an alternative way for these kids to express themselves and communicate without the stresses of the physical life stuff.”

日常社交情况可能对自闭症儿童有挑战性,who may struggle to pick up on social cues or understand another person’s perspective. Duncan thinksMINECRAFT.strips away the pressures typical of the real world. There is no noisy or unfamiliar environment to distract you, no pressure to track the other person’s facial expressions or worry about eye contact. “WithMINECRAFT.,你真的可以成为自己,“他说。“社会互动,关系,沟通 - 一切都归结为你和你的键盘。”

要加入Autcraft,您必须填写一个应用程序。一旦批准,您可以自由地漫游景观并建立自己的结构。您也可以参加小组游戏 - 就像巨大的战斗反对“枯萎”,一种幽灵般的恶棍 - 或者作为一个团队建造东西。但你必须坚持一些规则。骚扰其他玩家或摧毁他们的财产可以让你被禁止。青少年的旋转服务器略有允许。

Ringland观察了Autcraft上的球员,并通过关于相关在线论坛的讨论进行梳理。她看到人们建立友谊,一起玩得开心。她还看到了孩子在游戏中的美好时光表达了他们的感情,以及对现实世界中的问题的焦虑或悲伤。“继续存在很多反思,”她说。“MINECRAFT.支持很多这些社会行为。“

Joining a community like Autcraft could be a good first step to feeling less socially anxious and more engaged, says Elizabeth Laugeson, director of the PEERS Clinic at the University of California, Los Angeles, which teaches young adults with autism how to build relationships. But it shouldn’t be the only outlet for learning these skills, she says. “MINECRAFT.不一定教导他们需要浏览现实世界的社交技能。“

然而,在它的工作地点,Autcraft在纽约斯托尼布鲁克大学的Matthew Lerner表示,创建以共同兴趣为中心的社会环境如何强大。“它从自闭症中的兴趣和激情中建立了来自自闭症的人,而不是试图重定向或惊讶他们。”

建筑连接

MINECRAFT.帮助了基思斯图尔特,游戏编辑器The Guardian,build a relationship with his autistic son Zac, inspiring his forthcoming novel,一个由街区制成的男孩

“Most games have missions and objectives, pushing you in certain directions.MINECRAFT.presents you with a world and a bunch of tools and you can do what you want. If Zac just wanted to roam the landscape hunting sheep or digging holes, he could. He is free to express himself. There are rules but they are very clear and don’t change. The powerful combination of openness and clear rules definitely appeals to my son.

“I’ve written about this forThe Guardian并且有大量的父母说它正是他们的儿子或女儿发生的事情。

“As a parent of a child with autism, I worry about putting him in social situations. Autcraft and similar servers [see main story] try to create an environment in which people can express themselves without fear. That’s important to parents who are nervous about what their children will encounter in multiplayer online games.

“父母经常与视频游戏有管理关系,但远远潜在地对孩子们造成损害,他们可以给我们一种新的沟通方式。我们了解到Zac和他喜欢的是什么以及他想通过与他交谈的东西MINECRAFT.。”

This article appeared in print under the headline “Your place or Minecraft?”

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