PRINCIPIA SCACCHORUM, Part 14, Square One Problem Statement
HOW CHESS SQUARE ONE IS FAILING MILLIONS
The overwhelming majority, or an estimated 99.50%, of all chess entrants in the US never get out of Square One into the next level beyond the moves; this means that they have never learned the most elementary concepts of the game, what we call the basics.
Because of this, they are, sadly, unable to build any more advanced concepts upon the non-existing fundamentals. Square One is thus preventing millions from enjoying the most noble of games, unless wood pushing should be considered playing chess. This situation is keeping them outside the gates of the glorious Castle of the Chess Kingdom on the hill where they belong.
To enjoy and be creative in a domain, one has to get deeper into it past the introductory Square One. Once young Mozart had learned the basic rules of music, he was off to his mission of a genius.***
One of the greatest chess thinkers of all time, Dr. Emanuel Lasker, a philosopher and PhD in Math, put in his Manual of chess (1925) that, "Our education, in all domains of endeavor, is frightfully wasteful of time and values."
In 1929, Nimzovich emphatically asserted that showing and teaching the moves first thing in chess, is "fundamentally wrong" (in his How I became a Grandmaster article in the Russian Shakhmatny Listok magazine).
Anyway, all chess experts agree on one undeniable fact, that Chess Square One is responsible for the unchecked spread of chessboard blindness among beginners.
Are there any doubts now that Chess Square One is failing the beginner?
It was important for us to understand the problem before we try to solve it.
Now, what may be a possible culprit for this unfortunate reality?
The right answer to this question is critical if we want to find the proper cure for the disease.
Tags: teaching chess, learning chess, chess basics, chess fundamentals, creativity, broken education
*** Of course, not all of us could and should become a genius, but there’s still so much room to unleash our latent creativity.
"No matter how enormous chess gifts a child may have, they won’t be able to contribute to chess without learning its rules. Each domain is made up of its own symbolic elements, its own simple rules. Therefore it should be easy for a student to assimilate the rules quickly and jump to the cutting edge of the domain in a few years.” Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Creativity