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Part 4-1: Chess Club Activities For Students - Puzzles!

Part 4-1: Solving Chess Puzzles!

by John Bain

Activities. Activities that are fun--and that improve chess knowledge and skills--are the lifeblood of a well-run, fun, strong chess club! Competition, essential to chess, plays a large part in the activities.

Some competitions are fun and relatively stress-free--like Solving Chess Puzzles, Bughouse Chess-Siamese Chess, and Chess Club Quad Tournaments, where students play at their own ability levels. Other competitions are intense, especially as students grow older--like Chess Club Ladder Competition and Scholastic Chess Tournaments.

Begin each chess club with two problems displayed on the Demonstration Chessboards ($39.00). Label them Problem 1 and Problem 2. On one, display a simple problem like the "White to move and checkmate in two moves" above, and the other display a more difficult problem like, "White to move and win the Black Queen for a Knight in two moves."

White to move and Checkmate in two moves!

Problem 1: White to move and checkmate in two moves. SEE PROBLEM 1 ANSWER BELOW!

White to move and win the black Queen for a Knight in two moves!

Problem 2: White to move and win the black Queen for a Knight in two moves! SEE PROBLEM 2 ANSWER BELOW!

Have the students write their answers in algebraic notation on a chess score sheet and put the answers into boxes labeled Problem 1 and Problem 2.

Then, later during the chess club when students are gathered for ladder challenges, conduct a drawing and award a prize to the first student whose name is drawn with the correct answer for Problem 1 and to the first student with the correct answer for Problem 2.  Prizes do not need to be extravagant to hold the students' interest in this activity--certificates work well as do healthy and unhealthy snacks! Be creative with the prizes.

Problem 1 Answer:
1. Qb8+!+ Nxb8
2. Rd8#

Problem 2 Answer:
1. Nc7+! K moves
2. Nxe6 wins the black Queen!

What Makes "Chess Clubs For Students" Work?

Parts 1-6

by John Bain

Intro: What Makes "Chess Clubs For Students" Work? outlines practices for building a well-attended, successful chess club.

Part 1 - Basic Chess Skills and Psychology For Students emphasizes how learning the Chess Rules and Three Psychological Practices enable students to become stronger players.

Part 2 - Basic Endgame Checkmate Patterns For Students covers Four Basic Endgame Checkmate Patterns that will yield collateral benefits to all aspects of a student's games.

Part 3  - Choosing Location, Meeting Times & Equipment demonstrates that the right location, the right meeting times, and quality chess equipment will foster enthusiastic student chess club participation.

Part 4 - Chess Club Activities For Students shows that activities that are fun--and that improve chess knowledge and skills--are the lifeblood of a well-run, great chess club!

Part 5 - How to Promote Chess Clubs in Schools presents the very best, promising practices for promoting school chess clubs.

Part 6 - What Chess Teaches Kids About Life notes the virtues, lessons and life skills that chess teaches!

NEXT> Part 4-2: Teacher & Students' Presentations will present “simple” master games and students' games that demonstrate “Principles For Stronger Chess!”

Solve a Puzzle & Win!
Solve a chess puzzle, enter the weekly drawing as often as you like, and win awesome prizes! Winners’ prizes are listed below. If you don’t win this week, try again next week! New puzzles are posted daily!