3 Reasons Why Your Child Should Learn Chess
Parents are always looking for ways to help their children lead fun, and healthy lives. Extracurricular are a huge part of defining a child’s youth, so it’s hard to decide which activities to choose when juggling them all becomes too much. Today, more and more studies are exploring the benefits of chess in ways that we never could have imagined. Here are 3 reasons why learning chess is the go-to extracurricular for mindful parents.
Learning Chess Makes You a Better Reader
In 1991, the IBM Corporation financed a study that explored the effects of chess on reading ability. This study was performed in low-income schools throughout New York that historically maintained lower than average reading levels. When these schools began to teach chess to their students, the students showed a significant gain in their year to year reading levels.
But it doesn’t stop there. Recently this study was recreated in 6 cities across the United States. Half the classrooms were given a daily chess lesson, while the other classrooms were able to use that “free time” to do math, reading, or social studies. The end of year reading test showed that the chess students scored significantly better, even when compared to the classes that used their “free time” to read! The positive effects of chess on seemingly unrelated skills are still being studied to this day, and the results are convincing.
Learning Chess Lowers Risk of Dementia
While this may seem like a strange thought when talking about your child, the fact that learning chess maintains a healthy brain should not be ignored. A recent publication Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease: What Do We Know? documents that remaining cognitively active by “playing games that are linked to keeping the mind sharp” is a powerful defense against mind deterioration. The thought is that learning chess creates a mental ‘reserve’ that can be utilized when the brain is damaged, allowing it to operate effectively. On a side note, this book actually features two people playing chess on the cover! It just goes to show how we continue to learn new ways that chess is a powerful tool.
Learning Chess Can Connect You to a Mentor
A chess school or chess club is often a welcoming place. Not only are chess schools a great place to build lasting friendships, a private chess coach can be a great mentor or role model. Finding a chess coach that is supportive, knowledgeable, and challenges your children is like having another school teacher in their lives. Someone they get to learn from and have fun with at the same time.
Enroll Your Children into Chess!
Learning chess has more merits than we thought, and we are just beginning to understand them. Learning chess from a chess school or chess coach is just as powerful of a hobby as any sport. If you’re considering enrolling your child into a chess school, or looking for the perfect coach, you will not be disappointed. As time goes on, we will only learn more and more about the benefits of this wonderful game.