Monday, May 14, 2012

Making the Smart Moves

Hands on learning. Competition.  Focus.   Sitting in one's seat for long periods of silence.  Problem solving.  Being able to see the Big Picture.  Low tech.  Budget friendly. 

About the only thing this proposal requires, is thinking inside the box.  All sixty-four of them.

Proposal: All public schools, starting in grade three through middle school, should offer chess as an activity within the school day.  In high school, it becomes an elective taken for academic credit.  I'm not talking about a Chess Club.  I'm talking about a class open to any interested student, even the ones who sign up only because they need the credits.  Making it a required course would ruin it, as most requirements make a certain percentage of any student body cranky.  As an after school activity it becomes less likely that students in large numbers will be able to avail themselves of this dramatic learning experience.  In high school, athletics, jobs, social lives, the benefits gained from learning the discipline of chess can and has been proven in a variety of studies.

In fact, at the risk of inciting insurrection, I would like to see any parent who feels dismay at the intensive pressure of their schools to teach to the test, or thinks that standardized tests are not helping their child learn, to do the following:

Opt out.  Opt out in favor of kids spending practice test time learning chess.  Chess playing teachers may be thrilled at the idea.

It's just a suggestion, but one I've been thinking about for quite awhile.

More on that subject can be found on the following link:


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