Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 Hide
7 Posts

Chess» Forums » General

Subject: Chess for Kids? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Dwsparks
United States
Huntsville
Alabama
flag msg tools
badge
When the bullet hits the bone!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
My daughter is in First Grade, and has joined her school's chess club, where she routinely gets trounced by 2nd and 3rd graders. (They keep the 4th and 5th graders in a separate group.)

We've been working through the strategies and scenarios in a book I had when I was young ("Illustrated Chess for Children", Harvey Kidder, 1970). The book isn't half-bad, but I figure that there has to have been some newer texts in the intervening 30+ years...

Does anyone have any suggestions or recommendations for teaching to game to the younger set? I'd like to keep her interested in Chess.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bill Herbst
United States
Sayville
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I have the huge Polgar book of chess problems (I bought it for myself several years ago actually). The very first section of this book has about 300 mate in one problems. They are very easy for an adult but are perfect for a young child as they involve no look ahead but require the child to see the whole board and choose the one game ending move from a few potentially tempting options. I wouldn't really recommend the book for those problems themselves however as the whole book has tens of thousands of problems and those are only the first few pages.

When playing against my daughter (who is in fifth grade but is still functionally a complete beginner), I often place my pieces en prise just to see if she can recognize that she has the opportunity to capture them. I have also set her up with a few pieces and played out some end games just to give her the basic ideas behind setting up combinations of pieces to use for checkmate.

I would be interested to see what others have to say on the subject as well.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Yours Truly,
United States
Raleigh
North Carolina
flag msg tools
badge
There must have been a moment at the beginning, where we could have said no. Somehow we missed it. Well, we'll know better next time.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This is a great book for kids, it's what I learned on (it's not new, but newer isn't always better! ):
Chess for Young Beginners, by William T. McLeod and Ronald Mongredien, Golden Press, 1977.

I see some available used on amazon for dirt cheap, ~$3.
It's really nicely illustrated (cartoony), and they do a great job breaking down the game into different components. As they introduce each piece, they have practice games that incorporate just those pieces, to learn the strategy and movement. I highly recommend this for youngsters! Shame it's not in print anymore. But well worth finding a used copy.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Franco
Canada
Ottawa
ON
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
What about something like the ChessMaster software? There's an entire multimedia introductory programme aimed specifically for kids.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bill J
United States
Batavia
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmb
Here is a software package that is useful for kids. These are the folks that make the Fritz chess engine (a pretty powerful game/tool). Chesster is more oriented for kids.

Here is the amazon link for chesster
http://www.amazon.com/Learn-Play-Chess-Fritz-Chesster/dp/B00...

here is the link for the company that produces and distrubes it
www.chessbase.com
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian Kelley
United States
Columbia
South Carolina
flag msg tools
Go Bulldogs!
badge
A comical familiar for an absent-minded wizard.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Play "Monster Chess" with her. That's where she has one piece to move and you set up pieces that she has to try and capture in as few moves as possible. Only her piece moves. If first saw it in a software title called Maurice Ashley Teaches Chess. If you can find that software title, it's got a few great games like that. In any case, Monster Chess allows her to see attacking opportunities with a particular piece that you can gradually increase in difficulty, first by giving her more pieces to capture overall, then by giving her choices where she can capture two pieces at a particular point (but only one choice which will allow her to capture a piece on every single move), and then to where she may have to make a move without a capture to set up the right sequence of captures.

Also, as has been suggested, get an software title or an electronic chess game that has a weak enough level where she can win between 25-50% of the time with a few trys. Once she gets to the point where she's winning more than 50% of the time, advance it to the next level, repeat. She'll win often enough to keep it interesting, but not too often to where she doesn't learn from her mistakes.

One final thought, you play her (gently of course), and record the moves of the game. Play several games, and pick one concept to show her that she's repeating in her games (for instance, if a young player continues to open with one of the rook pawns, we show that and show what the other player, who goes for the center, is able to do with an advantage). Another tactic along this line is to play her, but every 5 moves, switch sides. That means she'll sometimes be playing a position where she has a good advantage and that'll increase her sight and also will help her think about what the opponent is doing (especially if she is like my younger son who realized, "Hey, I can tank two moves on purpose and set Dad up for checkmate when we switch sides!").
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dwsparks
United States
Huntsville
Alabama
flag msg tools
badge
When the bullet hits the bone!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Thanks for the suggestions.

Some of our practicing may be working, as she came home from Chess Club today beaming, having won seven games and lost none.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.