I was having a lively discussion with my son about practicing, and why do I not need to remind him to practice his video games? After all, it is every bit as challenging on one’s brain as playing music. If you don’t believe me, try dribbling and passing as you move the open man into the lane on any video basketball game. Yet my son says this is “natural for kids”, where as say, string crossing and adjusting bow speed is not.
My point is that he has precedence for believing that practice can improve coordination and that previously challenging sequences are now elemental to him. But he got so advanced at video games that he forgot that he once stank at them, that this lesson is lost. I believe very strongly that the two processes are similar. That is, we create building blocks in our mind of what our muscles can do. As we get more advanced, those building blocks become basic structures for more complex blocks, and so on.
So, how I can get him to see that practice pays off, since he no longer sees his video game time as practice – complete with mistakes – yet that’s what it is.