x
Chess - Play & Learn

Chess.com

FREE - In Google Play

FREE - in Win Phone Store

VIEW

trophies vs rating (improving)

  • #1

    My son recently started playing scholastic chess tournaments.

     

    Since our goal for him is to teach him good sportsmanship while having fun, I've been aiming for trophies instead of raising his rating by entering him into the lowest allowed sections (i.e. age-based sections).

     

    Because of opponents' low ratings, he makes careless mistakes (e.g. last tournament he stalemated with overwhelming material advantage which caused a large rating drop) and doesn't care to improve his game (probably because there is no need to).  We do emphasize placement trophies by returning his tournament fee when he places (we charge him $25 per tournament).  So far, he's placed in all except 1, so his money goes really far.

     

    I'm debating whether to move him into the more difficult sections (i.e. non-age-based sections).  Tournaments around here generally have, for example, K-Gr2 U800  and K-12 U800, and generally K-12 U800 would be more difficult than K-Gr2.

     

    But I'm concerned that, by moving into the harder sections, we will deviate from our original goal of just having fun (and really tournament fun means winning) while learning sportsmanship (which chess has taught my son a lot already).  Without moving him up, I worry that he may not be competitive when around 3rd grade (he's 1st grade now), i.e. tournament chess will only be fun for another 2 years.

     

    We also would like to see him doing more active sports (e.g. swimming), and competitions there start around 3rd grade.  So maybe it isn't bad to just keep him in the easy sections.

     

    What's your experience?

    Suggestions? 

     

  • #2

    An idea is to enter him into higher sections at local tournaments, and sign up for lower sections in larger tournaments so that he has fun (and possibly win prizes instead of just trophies).

     

    Any thoughts?

    Chess parents?

  • #3
    If your son loves chess, put him in more competitive matches. If he doesn't, then maybe you should find something else for him
  • #4

    Chess is not only fun when you win, and chess is not something that won can play saying they'll never lose. Gary Kasparov got the shock of his life when he lost to Judith Polgar. Losing is not fun but the fear of losing will lead to a fear of the game. Make understand losing is okay and focus on his training and the victories will follow, hopefully trophies.

  • #5

    "...(and really tournament fun means winning) while learning sportsmanship..." -You really don't see the contradiction here?? How can anyone learn sportsmanship by never losing? Where I'm from, the main parts of sportsmanship are fair play, focused effort, winning without boasting, and losing with a smile! From the OP, it doesn't seem like your offspring is learning very much of no 2 and 4... 

     

    I don't have any specific answers for you, but if you win bc of a (big) mismatch, is it really a win? Does it really have any value? And if your kid is winning and having all the "fun", as you put it, does that mean all the other kids are having a lousy time? Sounds kinda unfair to me... Or maybe they've discovered a certain joy from just playing no matter who's winning or losing, so maybe it's you and your son who are missing out on something valuable? -Or maybe I'm just reading waaayy too much into your comment happy.png

     

    All that being said, it's a general tendency of humans, that we need some challenges to grow -in any field. 

  • #6

    happy.png

  • #7

    Thanks for the suggestions.  Definitely something for me to think about; but I think I may be planning too far ahead.

     

    I asked my son directly about whether he'd prefer to improve his rating or get trophies, and he prefers trophies.  I think I'll just keep it him in the lower rated section.  Chess has taught him a lot about sportsmanship; he deals with loses very much better.  It's done its main purpose already; now it is just entirely for fun.

     

  • #8

    I thought about this issue so I posted this question, i.e. I agree that improving is important in the long term.  Then, after posting and thinking more, I realized that my son is only 7 and I don't want to push him in chess.  Hence my conclusion.  However, your feedbacks were useful and I appreciate them.

     

    As for the losers not having fun, I wouldn't know (maybe there're other incentives, it'd be arrogant for me to assume anything about their situation in this case).   Parents must create a desire in their children to learn and sometimes it just means keeping thing moving at a slower pace (than what the parent wants).

     

    I'm ok if my son quits competitive chess after a few years, although it is a very cheap and PC activity : )

     

  • #9
    Well my sister is a 7 year old kid and she's a lot more obsessed with getting trophies than her rating. "Rating? I want a trophy like my brother did!!" quoting her
  • #10

    Play more tourneys!

  • #11
    [COMMENT DELETED]
  • #12
    dunkindonuts765 wrote:

    Get your son a chess engine like Stockfish and have him play against it. If he plays it everyday, and goes through analysis after, then he will surely improve. Most of my chess knowledge and skill comes from playing with the machine and checking out the database just for fun.

     

  • #13
    mgx9600 wrote:

    I thought about this issue so I posted this question, i.e. I agree that improving is important in the long term.  Then, after posting and thinking more, I realized that my son is only 7 and I don't want to push him in chess.  Hence my conclusion.  However, your feedbacks were useful and I appreciate them.

     

    As for the losers not having fun, I wouldn't know (maybe there're other incentives, it'd be arrogant for me to assume anything about their situation in this case).   Parents must create a desire in their children to learn and sometimes it just means keeping thing moving at a slower pace (than what the parent wants).

     

    I'm ok if my son quits competitive chess after a few years, although it is a very cheap and PC activity : )

     

     

    I have a somewhat different opinion from the rest (ok actually I'm not sure how young kids fare against adult players though). Again, consider this together with other players' opinions.

     

    As far as I am aware of, the initial rating of a player depends on his performance against his first few rated opponents (games against unrated players do not contribute to this). Thereafter, rating fluctuations (depends on some constant k-factor, the lower the value of k, the less rating a player would lose for posting a loss and the less rating a player would gain for posting a win) will be lower, but still quite high for the next few games up to the first 30 rated tournament games (not sure if unrated games count towards this 30 game limit here). If I am not wrong the value of k for starters is 40 whilst the value goes down to 20 after the completion of the first 30 games.

     

    Personally, I feel that obtaining a good rating should be preferred. While the value of k is still 40, the rating fluctuations is still high and quick rating gains are still possible. I am confident that your son can win his tournament games. Once the 30 game limit has been exceeded, further wins will contribute not as much in gain towards his rating. After the tournament which your son would have completed his 30th game, perhaps it could be a good time to aim towards trophies and prizes.

  • #14

    [COMMENT DELETED]

     

  • #15

    [COMMENT DELETED]

     

  • #16

    I've been playing in scholastic tournaments. I've actually only played in two but I've already placed once. I've also played in other tournaments.  what I've learned is that even if you loose it's okay. Just notate so you can review your games.

Top

Online Now