Having a chess club in your school is so valuable for your students. Playing chess daily can lead to amazing strides in academic achievement. But before you’re able to see these benefits, you need to take the first leap and set up your new chess club! Starting a chess club requires you to ask yourself a few key questions.
What is our goal for starting a chess club?
Keeping your goal in mind while making decisions will help keep you true to your students. It’s important to consider what they want out of a chess club, as much as what you want for them. Will the main goal be academic improvement? A social outlet during lunch hour? Are you wanting to compete in regional tournaments?
Choose a goal that is right for your students. We can’t stress enough that school aged children are socialites! Ensure that even if your goal is competitive chess, that the social aspect does not get lost. Maintain ‘fun’ as a prerequisite, no matter what your goal is, and you’ll have a successful chess club.
Who is going to run our chess club?
This is perhaps the most important question. Starting a chess club requires someone who is not only an expert in chess, but they also must be an expert in teaching chess to children. Teaching chess, especially to children, is an art of its own. It’s a balancing act. The teacher must present chess in a way that makes it feel exciting, collaborative, and fun. At the same time, they must understand the theory behind teaching chess well.
We highly recommend bringing in a professional chess coach to lead your club. Not only will a coach accelerate your students chess game, but they have experience with all the hurdles and challenges of teaching chess to a room of youngsters. And a coach that understands the academic benefit of chess can also make sure that those benefits are fully realized in your students.
What logistics do we have to take into consideration?
Starting a chess club requires a bit of equipment and planning. You will need a number of chess sets, trophies, reliable websites for puzzles and other chess exercises, a short daily curriculum, and a room to meet. When we host chess clubs in London area schools, we bring all of the equipment with us, including chess sets, demonstration boards for large groups, trophies, and everything in between. This can really help get your school’s chess club off the ground smoothly. All we need is a room to host in, and we will take care of the rest.
Get in touch with us here. We would be happy to bring chess into your schools, or even simply advise on the best way you can get your school chess club started!