I thought this was pretty cool and wanted to share it. I am all for kids being able to have something to do after school. When I was younger I didn't have anything to do so more often than not, I got in trouble. I think Chess is a great way to keep kids interested with things outside of video games and social media for an after school event. Chess teaches patience, critical thinking, and a solid reward system. You have to EARN a win in Chess. It can't just be handed to you.
When Ted Komada started teaching 14 years ago, he says he didn't know how to manage a classroom and was struggling to connect with students.
He noticed a couple of days after school that a group of kids would get together to play chess. "I said, 'I know how to play chess. Let me go show these kids how to do it.'"
So he went across the hall and did nothing, he says, but lose game after game. "And that's when I remember being like, 'Oh, there's knowing how the pieces move, and there's playing chess.'"
Now playing chess is a big deal at Killip Elementary in Flagstaff, Ariz., where Komada is a teacher and coaches the chess team. The whole program started as a safe place for kids to come after school — a diversion — and this week dozens of those students are getting ready to head out to Nashville, Tenn., to compete with about 5,000 other young people at the SuperNationals of chess. The competition only happens every four years and the last time the team went, they placed a team at third in the nation.