Are Nintendo Switches Detrimental to Student Productivity?


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The Nintendo Switch can be distracting to students and should not be used during class time.

Since the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on Dec. 7, 2018, there has been a significant increase in the amount of Nintendo Switches being sold with around 32.27 million sold as of Dec. 31, 2018.

With the raise in sales of the Nintendo Switch, many students who play video games contribute to a problem: gaming at school. From my observations I see this problem occur at school during break-times and even in class, as students play on their console of choice — the Nintendo Switch.

I have been invested in competitive gaming with games like Super Smash Bros. and Pokémon since middle school when practicing to compete in Smash Bros. and Pokémon competitions was my main priority. Back in junior high, I found myself constantly playing on my Nintendo 3DS both in and outside of school, so with the introduction of the Nintendo Switch, I and many other students, have once again become addicted, using our Switches in an environment that should be dedicated to learning.

When I practice techniques for games, I am motivated to play for a long duration of time until I am able to execute in-game-plays flawlessly. This is precisely why the Switch is a major source of procrastination, and I am not the only one who struggles with this.

After conversing with other owners of Switches, I found that we all had 115 hours of playtime for a game that was released only two months ago. These people are the same students who bring their Switches to school daily and can also be seen playing during class.

Furthermore, trading productivity and involvement at school for time on my Switch is an easy thing to do, and I will rapidly fall behind in my classes because of this. However, used in moderation and at the appropriate times, the Nintendo Switch definitely helps people interact with each other and have fun. For example, when someone starts a game of Super Smash Bros., almost everyone gets involved even if it is just to watch.

Switches are also great for recreation, which is why I joined the E-sports club — dedicated to competitive gaming. This club allots a healthy amount of time to gaming and so I am able to refrain from using my Switch in class knowing that I will be able to use it later on in the day. Hopefully, more students will consider only playing on their Switches in the appropriate setting: outside of classes.