The Role of Chess in Modern Education
One of the essential goals of education is to teach children to think critically: students must learn to make reasoned judgments. Chess is an excellent tool to demonstrate the theme of critical thinking.
At RPSGOS,Chess has been part of the curriculum for nearly 10 years. Students were encouraged to play chess at a very early age to increase their problem solving and reasoning skills.
An important element of critical thinking in chess is the evaluation process where the strength of one’s position is assessed . Beginners who play chess place significant emphasis on material — reasoning that “the player with more material will win by sheer numbers”.Dr. Stuart Margulies, a researcher for IBM, stated that he “conclusively proved that students who learned chess enjoyed a significant increase in their reading ability”. Furthermore, chess forces students to visualize concepts and piece movement. This may allow for better visualization (interpretive) skills when reading.
Key Benefits of Chess:
a) chess increases strategic thinking skills, stimulates intellectual creativity, and improves problem-solving ability, while raising self-esteem;
b) when youngsters play chess they must call upon higher-order thinking skills, analyze actions and consequences, and visualize future possibilities;
c) in countries where chess is offered widely in schools, students exhibit excellence in the ability to recognize complex patterns and consequently excel in math and science; and
d) instruction in chess during the second grade will enable pupils to learn skills which will serve them throughout their lives. Yasser Seirawan, US Grandmaster, said that, “Chess must no longer remain a civilized luxury of the leisure class in either appearance or fact; rather, chess must assume its fundamental role as a mental integrator and motivational activator.