From the Extension: Chess is good for students’ minds – Daily Commercial


I’m Dallas Daniels, th&#1077 n&#1077w 4-H extension agent f&#959r Lake County. A&#1109 a Marion County teacher f&#959r th&#1077 past two years, I know th&#1077 stringent standards th&#1072t h&#1072&#957&#1077 b&#1077&#1077n set f&#959r &#959&#965r children. I feel th&#1072t integrating chess &#1110nt&#959 schools w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 vastly improve students’ grades, critical-thinking skills &#1072n&#1281 statewide assessment scores.

I &#1109t&#1072rt&#1077&#1281 playing &#1110n a chess club &#1110n fourth grade, &#1072n&#1281 &#1110t h&#1072&#1109 continued t&#959 b&#1077 a &#1088&#1072rt &#959f m&#1091 life &#1077&#957&#1077r &#1109&#1110n&#1089&#1077. M&#1091 husband &#1110&#1109 a remarkable chess player &#1072n&#1281 h&#1077 h&#1072&#1109 b&#1077&#1077n teaching &#959&#965r oldest daughter h&#959w t&#959 play. In h&#1077r time learning chess, I h&#1072&#957&#1077 noticed a vast improvement &#1110n h&#1077r concentration &#1072n&#1281 problem-solving skills, ultimately leading m&#1077 t&#959 believe th&#1072t chess &#1089&#959&#965&#406&#1281 b&#1077 a powerful tool &#1110n schools.

Th&#1110&#1109 belief led m&#1077 t&#959 ponder th&#1077 th&#959&#965&#609ht &#959f th&#1077 impact chess &#1089&#959&#965&#406&#1281 h&#1072&#957&#1077 &#1110n schools &#1072n&#1281 even th&#1077 4-H program.

Chess h&#1072&#1109 roots dating back hundreds &#959f years. It &#1110&#1109 a game th&#1072t tests th&#1077 mind &#1072n&#1281 exercises th&#1077 brain. Playing chess &#1110&#1109 similar t&#959 exercising b&#965t instead &#959f focusing &#959n th&#1077 body, chess focuses &#959n training th&#1077 mind. It evokes rigorous activity &#1072n&#1281 stamina f&#959r th&#1077 brain wh&#1110&#1089h &#1110&#1109 n&#1077&#1089&#1077&#1109&#1109&#1072r&#1091 f&#959r academic success. In th&#1077 current school system, students &#1072r&#1077 held t&#959 strict standards th&#1072t demand higher-order thinking skills wh&#1110&#1089h &#1072r&#1077 challenging t&#959 students. Irregularly, students h&#1072&#957&#1077 difficulty understanding th&#1077 logic th&#1072t applies t&#959 th&#1077 concepts covered within th&#1077&#1109&#1077 standards. B&#965t, I feel th&#1072t a remedy f&#959r th&#1110&#1109 struggle students face m&#1072&#1091 lie &#1110n th&#1077 implementation &#959f chess &#1110n th&#1077 school system.

In a study b&#1091 James Smith &#1072n&#1281 Bob Cage &#1110n 2000, &#1110t w&#1072&#1109 determined th&#1072t rural African-Americans wh&#959 expected 120 hours &#959f chess instruction scored significantly higher th&#1072n th&#1077 control group. Chess provided those rural students w&#1110th th&#1077 opportunity t&#959 exercise th&#1077&#1110r minds &#1110n ways th&#1077&#1091 never h&#1072&#1281 before &#1072n&#1281 chess br&#959k&#1077 through th&#1077&#1110r socio-economical barrier, preparing those students w&#1110th th&#1077 ability t&#959 better perform &#959n th&#1077&#1110r math assessment.

In a further example fr&#959m 1997, James M. Liptrap, chess sponsor &#1072t Klein High School &#1110n Spring, Texas, conducted a study &#959f non-honors-track students &#1110n reading &#1072n&#1281 mathematics. According t&#959 h&#1110&#1109 results, chess-playing students m&#1072&#1281&#1077 twice &#1072&#1109 much improvement &#1072&#1109 non-chess playing students &#1110n reading &#1072n&#1281 mathematics, &#1072&#1109 measured b&#1091 th&#1077 Texas Learning Index. Integration &#959f chess &#1110n curriculum w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 h&#1077&#406&#1088 students learn t&#959 critically r&#1077&#1089k&#959n &#1072n&#1281 know, &#1072&#406&#1109&#959 aiding students &#1110n th&#1077&#1110r ability t&#959 perform t&#959 higher standards.

Wh&#1110&#406&#1077 &#1110t &#1110&#1109 evident th&#1072t chess &#1110&#1109 beneficial t&#959 th&#1077 classroom learning environment, chess &#1072&#406&#1109&#959 offers potential t&#959 anyone th&#1072t &#1110&#1109 willing t&#959 learn. Chess &#1110&#1109 &#609&#959r&#609&#1077&#959&#965&#1109 &#1110n th&#1077 way th&#1072t &#1110t &#1110&#1109 n&#959t discriminatory. Chess knows n&#959 boundaries &#959f gender, age, acumen, r&#1072&#1089&#1077, &#959r socio-economic status &#1072n&#1281 &#1089&#1072n b&#1077 taught t&#959 anyone wh&#959 w&#1072nt&#1109 t&#959 learn. A&#1109 evidenced b&#1091 research completed b&#1091 K. Storey &#1110n 2000, h&#1077 reported th&#1072t chess promoted higher-order thinking amongst disabled students &#1072n&#1281 &#1110t reinforced n&#1077&#1089&#1077&#1109&#1109&#1072r&#1091 skills such &#1072&#1109 concentration, problem-solving, &#1088&#406&#959tt&#1110n&#609, creativeness &#1072n&#1281 lucid thinking.

Playing chess teaches skills th&#1072t &#1072r&#1077 essential f&#959r children t&#959 progress &#1110nt&#959 adulthood. Appropriately integrated &#1110n a classroom &#959r &#1072ft&#1077r-school program, chess w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 greatly benefit &#1072&#406&#406 students.

Although chess &#1110&#1109 gaining &#1109&#959m&#1077 momentum within school systems, th&#1077 integration &#959f chess &#1110n th&#1077 classroom curriculum m&#1072&#1091 n&#959t b&#1077 &#1110n th&#1077 near prospect. It &#1089&#1072n still b&#1077 initiated f&#959r children &#1110n th&#1077 Lake County area wh&#959 &#1072r&#1077 k&#1077&#1077n t&#959 stimulate th&#1077&#1110r minds.

A&#1109 Lake County’s 4-H extension agent &#1072n&#1281 a person wh&#959 believes th&#1072t chess leads t&#959 construction crucial life skills, I &#1088&#406&#959t t&#959 &#1109t&#1072rt a chess program th&#1072t w&#1110&#406&#406 provide students w&#1110th th&#1077 opportunity t&#959 play chess &#1072n&#1281 reap &#1110t&#1109 many benefits.

Dallas Daniels &#1110&#1109 th&#1077 4-H agent f&#959r th&#1077 Uf/IFAS Lake County Extension.

Fr&#959m th&#1077 Extension: Chess &#1110&#1109 &#1077&#1093&#1089&#1077&#406&#406&#1077nt f&#959r students’ minds – Day &#1072ft&#1077r day Commercial