Chess Club

  • Welcome!
    Chess is a sport for the mind and it will make you smarter! You will learn to plan, think ahead, weigh options and accept consequences. Chess also teaches you about sportsmanship - how to win graciously and not give up when encountering defeat.

    7:45 - 8:30 AM

    Obviously there will be a wide range of abilities and this is a challenge. The more parents who can help the better!

    Pawns (Beginners): For kids new to chess we will work on simply learning the game. This includes, how the board is set up, how pieces move, and some basic terms. Initially kids will start by playing "Pawn Wars/Racing". As ability increases, new pieces will be added into the mix. It's a great way to build knowledge of the piece movements. This is also an easy way for parents who want play, but don't know the full game of chess.

    Generals (Intermediate): Kids who have have a basic understanding of the game will be assisted by short tutorials as well as intriguing puzzles. We will even show you how to win in four moves! At this stage the hardest thing to learn is check mate or end game strategy.

    Royals (Advanced): We will do our best to guide these kids, however, many are far better than us already. We plan to introduce some basic strategies and perhaps some incentives for certain accomplishments. We will also encourage to use of chess notation. If you are a parent with some chess ability please help us!

    Kids can decide if they want to have an "official" match to be be included for ranking. There is no requirement to play official matches. Rankings in chess are much like handicaps in golf. There are official predetermined calculations used to define your ability. You are awarded little or no points if you beat someone with a lesser rank. This encourages players to challenge themselves by playing better opponents when possible.

    • Both players must agree to play a ranked game before the match begins.
    • If you are playing a ranked game both players must advise someone of the results.
    • We will enter results and then post the results and your ranking for next week.

    Award Rings
    Each member of the club will receive an award ring with a Horace Mann Chess Club tag attached. These are similar to belts in Karate and promote accomplishment. Each time a new level or task is completed we will add items to the ring. Keep these on your backpacks to help promote our club.

    Chess Etiquette
    Like other sports, chess has some basic etiquette which all players are asked to abide by in the spirit of good sportsmanship. These are important and include the following:

    • Before a game players shake hands
    • Do not touch a piece unless you intend to move it. Think with your head, not your hands!
    • Win or lose shake hands and thank your opponents. Be respectful in victory or defeat.
    • Do not intrude on another match. The chess term for this is called Kibitzing.

    The School Chess Association(SCA) has tournaments throughout the year for K-12 kids. The SCA is one of the most well respected scholastic chess organizations in the country and we try to go to a few. Some of these will have over 500 kids in attendance! Yes - kindergartners do play.