When the game of chess first comes to mind we rarely think of young children. Generally, we associate the game of chess with older children and adults. However, recent studies indicate that there are several benefits to children playing chess. Chess is a reminder to all of us that traditional games are highly beneficial to children. Making chess a part of children’s extra curricular activities is a sure way to boost their intelligence and test scores.
Advantages of Children Playing Chess
Parents are constantly searching on ways to enhance their child’s education. Most often we focus heavily on skills that currently need to be developed while overlooking life skills. Chess is a game of strategy. So therefore, every piece on the board has its own unique movement, which makes the game complex. When a child is introduced to the game of chess it teaches the child to realize the challenges associated with the game. Children learn that there are several ways in which the pieces can be moved. Learning how to analyze each move improves math skills.
Life long skills are developed by playing chess. One important feature a child will learn in chess is the ability to interpret body language. Understanding body language and reading expressions during a game will assist in planning their strategy in advance. Although, this skill applies to chess, it is equally essential as adults. Having the ability to predict issues along with the consequences of actions in advance will teach reasoning.
If your child is overactive with a constant need to move, then playing chess would be to their advantage. Chess requires one to sit in one place and concentrate. For many, this allows them to be calmer children with less aggression. Being calm and observant is essential in the game of chess. A child has to learn how their opponent will play, and and remember their moves.
Benefits of Children Playing Chess
• Logical thinking is developed when playing chess. In order to play chess, it requires the understanding of logical strategy.
• Chess is a great game to enhance creativity. It encourages children to invent many combinations. Playing chess will teach them how to develop the best plan with endless possibilities.
• Independence is taught from playing chess. Chess forces you to use your own judgement to make important decisions. A crucial skill not only as a child but as an adult.
• Perseverance is one of the most important skills anyone could ever have. Not only as a child but as an adult as well. What better way than to teach this than through the game of chess! Chess clearly demonstrates that success is rewarded with hard work. It is so important for children to realize that this can only be accomplished with practice.
• Chess plays an important role in improving science, and math. Playing science helps children with scientific thinking skills, such as exploring new ideas, predicting outcomes, producing several variations in your head, and most importantly you have a hypothesis and test it. Math is improved because there are a large number of calculations in chess. This greatly improves math because it requires a child to calculate in their head without relying on a machine to do it for them.
• What better way to have fun and improve grades and test scores at the same time! Chess will do just that. When children play chess, they test higher in reading and math. Generally, children who play chess have more success at learning during their primary years and in college.
Keep Children Interested in Chess
Now that your child has expressed an interest in chess, you are wondering how do I keep them interested and engaged. This is commonly asked by parents during the time in which their child is developing skills they need to be successful at playing chess. Here are some helpful suggestions for parents.
• Have children at the same level play entire games together.
• You can turn the board around during the game. This can be done after a certain number of moves have been made, or if it is requested by the child. It is suggested that it be done 2 or 3 times during the game.
• The adult can play touch-move on the computer, so if it is touched on the computer then it still has to be moved.
• Allow the child an opportunity to undo a move a couple of times and take another direction.