Opening Preparation - Part 1

Opening Preparation - Part 1

Jan 6, 2014, 9:22 PM |

KLA Chess Club (Keiller Leadership Academy), is a Title I, K-8 Charter School located in southeast San Diego. Chess class has been implemented as an everyday, in school class for middle school students.

For more information about our school, visit or about the KLA Chess Club,

The following lesson is taken from "Opening Preparation" by Mark Dvoretsky and Arthur Yusupov

Goals for the Opening:

*Fast development is the basis of opening play.

*Control the center with pawns or putting pressure on the center with minor pieces.

* Establish a good pawn structure

* Control the tempo

Some Basic Rules for the Opening:

1) Avoid moving the same piece twice, unless ABSOLUTELY necessary.

2) Do not waste time; especially by moving rook pawns.

3) Don't bring the queen out too early. In order for a queen to be effective, she needs her pawns and minor pieces to make a way for her...Think of how a real queen would have servants and horseman out before her. Try to find a safe square for her to develop to.

4) Do not attack too early. Would you want to enter a battle with just a few men or a whole army?

5)Avoid "pawn hunting". Remember the purpose is to develop an attack, not just to pick-off pawns.

* Also, put your King in a safe position by getting castled and connect the rooks!

Students, follow along with the following game and predict what each player might do next...just be sure not to wander too far off.

The full version of the above game...

Key Points:

*Black played very practically and steadily which led to an early advantage.

* Although white was behind early, he capitalized on a blunder by black and eventually won the game.

* Although important, the opening isn't always everything. White was behind in the opening, but wasn't too far as he did follow most of the major rules and was able to stay in the game and win.

Now, another example...

*Key points

- Notice how both players sought to control the middle

- Try to plan out a few moves at a time; the plan should be a series of mini steps of 3 to 4 moves.