New video game helps kids feel empathy

(WQOW)- New research suggests some kids are lacking empathy, and a new video game may be able to help them improve. 

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison designed a game called "Crystals of Kaydor".  

It sends players to a planet where aliens don’t speak their language, but have human-like facial expressions. The players have to interpret those emotions in order to help the aliens. 

Tim Volbrecht, an outpatient behavioral health counselor at L.E. Phillips Libertas Center, said even though technology is partly to blame for a lack of  empathy in kids, technology can also be used in a positive way to teach them. 

"Part of what we need to teach our children is how to pair emotional words and recognition with body expressions, body emotions, facial expressions and so having something on the screen which is pairing, or teaching, somebody this is what a sad face looks like, this is what angry looks like, could be beneficial," Volbrecht said. 

In the study, researchers were able to see positive changes in the brains of eighth graders who played the game, compared to a control group. 

Researchers said these games may be able to help a wide range of kids, including some on the autism spectrum. 

To read the full study click here. 

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