Prodigy Program - February 2015 Registration Open!
This is a fully updated article regarding Chess.com University's Prodigy Program. Please read this post in its entirety if you are a new student or a prospective student wanting to join the program in February. Most importantly, registration for all three sections of the Prodigy Program is now open for the February, 2015 month of the program.
Want your child to become a chess prodigy? Yes? So do we! Or are you an adult and want to master chess yourself? Great, we will get you there! Read on to learn more about our program.
*Chess.com University's Prodigy Program*
Master Chess at Any Age, Within 5 Years
This online super-coaching program by Chess.com University is designed to create chess prodigies out of youth players and take them, or any chess player, to master-level within 5 years. By offering high-quality live lessons, detailed study plans, relevant homework, and unlimited guidance from our world-class team of coaches, we have created a program that can take any chess player from beginner to master within 5 years! The Chess.com University Prodigy Program is for kids as well as adults. It is open to chess players of all ages.
- Taught by Kairav Joshi, Chess.com's officially best-selling coach and President of Chess.com University, along with FM Dalton Perrine, NM Dane Mattson, and several GMs. Grandmasters involved, mostly as guest instructors, include former USCF (U.S. Chess Federation) President GM Maxim Dlugy, former Ukrainian National Champion GM Valeriy Aveskulov, famous American coach GM Ben Finegold, former U.S. National Champion GM Alex Yermolinsky, and many more! Note that most of the GMs will only be guest instructors during the earlier stages of the program. They will be actively involved once the program reaches advanced material.
- At least 12 hours of live online classes per month spread out over 8 to 10 sessions. The live lessons will also be recorded and uploaded online so students can review them.
- Detailed weekly study plan (an awesome 7-page PDF sent each week!)
- An online correspondence tournament each month.
- A simul with a chess master each month.
- Students' games analyzed.
- Full email support for all students. Unlimited guidance and tips!
- Tuition: $150/month per student.
- Live lessons will be taught mostly on weekends between 8:00 AM and 1:30 PM PST (Pacific Standard Time U.S./Canada). One lesson each month may be taught on a weekday, likely Monday, but this is still under consideration.
- The 900 ELO and 1200 ELO sections of the Prodigy Program launched with over 100 kids and adults in December, 2014. More students joined these sections in January. New students are able to join in during any month. Each month is designed to be a course it itself making it easy for new students to join. Key topics covered in the Prodigy Program in December include fundamental endgames such as K Q vs. K, K R vs. K, K B B vs. K, and other basic endgames involving edge pawns. Several lessons focused on tactics, forcing moves, basic planning, general principles of chess, and how to calculate and analyze.
During the January 2015 month of the Prodigy Program, the material in the 900 and 1200 sections continued to focus on tactics and endgames with some coverage of openings. More specifically, in the 900 section, endgame principles and basics of king and pawn endgames were covered including opposition, outflanking, how to win standard "won" king and pawn endgames and how to save objectively drawn king and pawn endgames. This section also received a thorough coverage of opening basics including principles, tactics, basic plans, and must-know positional imbalances in the opening. Basic openings were introduced to the students in January as well. Several lessons focused on helping students improve their general chess skills.
The 1200 section followed a curriculum similiar to the 900 section in January except that the level of material was more advanced. The 1200 section learned slightly more advanced endgame concepts such as triangulation. The coverage of opening basics was relatively brief; however, the 1200s learned much more about dynamic concepts such as attacking kings in positions with kings castled on opposite sides. The 1200s also learned more about middlegame tactics and strategy and how to play better dynamically.
The third section of the Prodigy Program, the 1500+ ELO section, launched on January 10th, 2015. Topics covered in this section include rook endgames, forcing moves (at a more advanced level), the importance of development and initiative, and much much more. As this section is advanced, more emphasis is placed on training than content. Certainly, knowledge is useful, but becoming tactically proficient and better at calculating is very important too.
Key Areas of Study in February, 2015:
900: Openings, tactics, and improving chess skills. Training will focus on improving memory, pattern-recognization, tactical strength, visualization, and calculation. The emphasis is on those topics in February but the lessons will still be well-rounded and will help students in every way.
1200: Openings, tactics, attacking, and improving chess skills. Training will focus on the same topics as the 900 section.
1500: Openings, tactics, and endgames, and improving chess skills just like in the other two sections.
Prospective students who would like to join the 900, 1200, or 1500 section starting in February should have a good understanding of topics already covered. Those wanting to join the 900 or 1200 section who haven't grasped the fundamentals yet should instead purchase the December 2014 material and January 2015 material and go through the recorded version of the program for those months prior to joining the February sessions. Similiarly, those wanting to join the February, 2015 month of the 1500+ section should first purchase the January, 2015 package of this section, especially if intending to study in the program long-term.
If you would like to purchase material from December 2014 or January 2015, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Note that due to high email volume, we may not be able to get back to you right away but usually we manage to reply to all emails within 48 hours.
*The 900+, 1200+, and 1500+ USCF/FIDE sections resume on February 7th, 2015.*
Note: While the sections have not been renamed, they are now covering material aimed at a slightly more advanced audience. For example, we may rename the 1200+ section as the 1300+ section in March.
Note: ELO refers to the standard over-the-board rating system. Rating systems that are used by FIDE, USCF, CFC, etc., are ELO or similiar to ELO. Online ratings tend to be inflated, sometimes heavily at the lower rating levels.
Understand that what we are offering is indeed a beginner-to-master program. Adults who join the program have an excellent chance at achieving that elusive chess master distinction. Parents who sign up their kids can (and should) expect their children to improve at chess very quickly. I myself have sent an 8-year-old student to the world youth championships and have numerous student competing and winning at the state and national levels. Let me tell you that we can certainly make your child a chess prodigy too!
Our prodigy program will continue for a long time. Students can join in or opt out at any time. We expect that youth players who study in our program for a few years will end up being among the best players in their age group. But those who only study with us for a few months will still improve by leaps and bounds. Our rate of $150/month offers unbeatable value. With our detailed, guided study plan in addition to the live lessons, the amount students learn each month may be equivalent to about 25-30 one-on-one hourly lessons with coaches. If the typical skilled coach charges $30/hr, that would cost $900/month!
With Chess.com University, it is $150/month and that is paying for the highest-quality of chess instruction available anywhere. That is paying for neverending tips and guidance. That is paying for the opportunity to learn from the best chess coaches while also getting a chance to interact with top chess players. Certainly, we will have super-GMs, perhaps even former world chess champions, as guest instructors too! If you truly love chess and want to get better quickly, sign up for the world's best chess-learning program.
Here are comments from former USCF President and #1 blitz chess player GM Maxim Dlugy regarding the Prodigy Program:
"By designing the Prodigy Program, Chess.com University has created a brilliant solution for chess players around the world. By offering lectures, training sessions, game analysis sessions, homework, and guided study plans all in an organized manner, the Prodigy Program enables easy and efficient chess learning."
"Technology has made it easier than ever to learn and improve at chess. I wish such programs existed when I was a young and ambitious chess player!"
"If you want to make your chess study productive and want to become a strong chess player, I highly recommend joining Chess.com University's Prodigy Program."
Here are Chess.com University Instructor FM Dalton Perrine's views on the Prodigy Program:
"As a young FIDE chess master myself, I have been studying chess for years. I have studied using numerous books, videos, and online resources. I spent countless hours training to improve my chess. Never did I come across any resource that put together information as clearly as I would have liked it to be, all in one place."
"But today, thanks to Kairav Joshi and Chess.com University, there is a way aspiring chess players can quickly learn and improve at chess. The Prodigy Program is the first such program that fully guides students from the very beginning to chess mastery. It is by far the best chess teaching program in the world today and I am happy to be one of the instructors teaching in it."
Don't have an official over-the-board rating?
What about those who don't have an ELO rating and are not sure which group is best for them? We have written a placement exam for them. Individuals without official ratings who want to join the 1200+ or 1500+ sections should complete the placement exam and achieve a satisfactory score. Those who do not score high enough for the 1200+ or 1500+ sections are advised to join the 900 section.
If you would like to sign up for the first month of the Prodigy Program but don't have an official rating and don't know which section is best for you, go ahead and take the placement exam.
The placement exam has been posted in the Chess.com University group on Chess.com:
That link will only work for Chess.com University members. If you are not a member, click here to join and then follow the link given above.
February 2015 Registration:
Registration for February, 2015 is now open for all sections of the Prodigy Program. We accept payment via check, money order, Bitcoin, credit/debit card, and PayPal. If you would like to mail a check or money order, contact GeniusKJ on Chess.com or send an email to email@example.com.
If you are a new student (current students, use the link that was already emailed to you) and would like to send payment for February, 2015 (any section) using credit/debit card or PayPal balance, please use the following link:
If you pay online, please message GeniusKJ on Chess.com AND email firstname.lastname@example.org immediately after you send payment to confirm your PayPal email address. Also include your real name and the contact email address you would like us to use. Please indicate which section you want to join.
Discounts and Commissions:
We offer family discount. We also give 10% commission on valid, successful referrals.
Sign up for the Prodigy Program today and start your journey of becoming a chess master!
Contact Chess.com University by sending a message on Chess.com to GeniusKJ or sending an email to email@example.com.