Chess Club FAQs

What happens during chess club?

The weekly chess club meetings are broken up into two portions. First, the coach teaches a lesson.  For beginner students, the lessons begin with the rules and basic strategy, and as the weeks go on they become more advanced. For more advanced students, they'll start with more advanced lessons.

For the second half of each meeting, the students are broken up into pairs to play a ladder game. Each player is paired against an opponent of similar skill.

My child has never played chess before. Is chess club appropriate for beginners?

Yes! We have many beginners sign up for chess each session. At most schools, chess club is divided up into groups by age and skill level.  For the beginner groups, we always start out by teaching the rules on the first day before progressing to more advanced lessons. Of course, the more a child practices outside of chess club, the more quickly the child will master the rules.

Is my child too young to play chess?

The answer to this question depends more on the child than on the age. There are plenty of four and five year olds who have learned to play chess, but some children are not ready for chess until they are older.

Most of our chess programs are for elementary school children, grades K-6.  Summer camp programs are for grades K-8.

Does my child need to bring chess equipment?

No. We provide all the necessary equipment for the club, though it is a good idea for each child to have a chess set at home so he or she can practice.

Who is Tournament Training For?

Tournament Training is for children who are already tournament players, or children who are interested in tournaments but haven’t played in them yet.

What happens during Tournament Training?

Children will start out by learning how to play tournament chess games.  This includes:

  1. How to play with a chess clock
  2. How to keep score during a chess game (write down the moves)
  3. How to deal with a situation where a rule has been broken
  4. How chess ratings work

Most weeks, the participants will play a rated game, write the game down, and then analyze the game they've just played with the instructor.  This is a GREAT way to improve at chess, because you can see what you did right and what you did wrong.  Also, if you can still remember and explain why you did what you did, a strong player can help improve your thinking processes.

Can I register my child late?

At locations where Silver Knights does not take registration, contact the community center, PTA, or school in charge of registration.

At chess clubs where Silver Knights takes registration, it's usually possible to register late.  If this is the case the cost may be prorated, but there will be an additional $10 late fee.