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Preparing for and managing chess club

  • #1

    Hi all,

    I'm planning to volunteer to introduce and manage a chess club at my son's elementary school. I'm excited about it, but also realize I need some guidance to pull this off successfully, so appreciate any suggestions you have to offer.

    Right off the bat I'm no master player myself - around 1100 playing blitz online. That doesn't count for much around here, but I'm hopeful with sufficient preparation that I'm a decent enough player to pull this off successfully. I'm willing to invest more time into my own chess game to try and increase my rating if I need to reach a higher level of play to teach kids.

    So what should I focus on these next few months? What would you spend your time doing for an hour a week with a group of 4-8 yr. old kids learning to play and improve their chess game? Should we watch chess.com videos (I'll spring for a paid membership Smile )? Should I prepare tactics exercises, practice openings, have them play me/each other, review historical games and notations from others far better than me?

    A PE teacher who knows the rules will be an assistant for what it's worth and I will have a computer with a projector and other equipment like TV/DVD player in the classroom to use.


  • #2
    Culleux wrote:

    http://www.squidoo.com/chessclub ?

    In Denmark, elementary schoolkids (4-8 yr) who starts with chess, plays pawn-chess (only 8 vs 8 pawns (no king) and the first gets the 8th rank wins) or Brave Nights-chess (2 night vs 4 pawns (no king) and if the nights gets all the pawns the nights wins and if the pawns get to the 8th rank they win and then with 5-6-7-8 pawns vs 2 nights) and all kind of little chess games (you can find them on the Internet) that takes the kids through the minds of real chess.

    Videos? - I wouldn'dt start with that with 4-8 yr olds, just remember it have to be FUN! - otherwise they loose interrest very fast.

    Thanks for the tips and reply, as well as the URL you posted - all very helpful!

  • #3

    Hi, I agree with Culleux, small children prefer simplified chess "games". Ideas from our pro chess club:

    1, Place 8 queens on the chessboard in a way that they can not capture each other (yes, it is possible :)!

    2, Place a Knight on any square and jump in regular "L" shape of Knight. The aim is to jump onto every square without landing on a square more than once. (yes, it is possible :) You need a lot (64) of pebbles to trace the route.

    Best regards, Ed


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