FIRST RANK - Newsletter No.5 June 2018

First Rank - A Newsletter for Chess in Schools in Europe!

First Rank is a weekly newsletter (starting regularly autumn 2018) for everyone interested in chess for education. This is the last issue of this academic year and focuses on how to organise a summer camp and how to plan next term. And of course we present the best Minigame for the summer and a Chess puzzle.  

Arrange a Chess Summer Camp!

All around Europe, it is popular to arrange Chess Summer Camps for kids with a mix of chess training, outdoor sporting and cultural activities and socialising. This is a great way to deepen the interest in chess and to develop friendships.

How to plan a Summer camp?

  • The most important thing with a chess camp is to create a great social environment.
  • Decide if it shall be a daily or a residential camp. 
  • Create a schedule with a mix of chess training, outdoor activities and group exercises.
  • Find a nice location!
  • Do not forget the Chess Party!
  • A chess camp is a great way to involve the parents!
  • Make a Chess Camp T-shirt for everyone so the children will remember the camp forever ...
Do you want to organise a summer event? We have written an article.

If you want chess to become a life long interest for a child, let them be part of a chess camp!

"I will now tell you the secret - it is chess camps!"

In 2005 I interviewed Olle Eleby who was in charge of the Junior section of the largest chess club in Sweden, SK Rockaden. I asked how he had succeeded in encouraging so many children to play chess at school, after school and in the traditional chess club activities in evenings. "You must understand that the magic ingredient in the development of a love of chess is to make chess friends. When you have a residential, sleep-over camp, the children will play chess all night, they talk, and not the least they will form the group. When a child become part of such an environment, chess will be part of their lives for ever." From this insight, I have tried to arrange chess camps on all levels which focus  on making the children have the most stimulating and memorable camp of their lives. I have rediscovered many times that social interaction is vital if you want a child to deepen their interest in chess.

Jesper Hall
Chair, ECU Education

Do you want a translation of the newsletter into your language?

Did you know you can get a translation of the newsletter into your language by clicking on the top to bring you to the web version. Select the "Translate" option and find your language. As it is an automatic translation it will not be a perfect one, but maybe the content will be easier for you to follow.  From September we will be producing both an English version and a German version of the newsletter.

The Summer Minigame: Choose your army

A good minigame for the summer is Choose your army. Behind the pawns the children can choose pieces to a value of 9 or 10 points. Encourage the children to play with all different types of pieces and to draw their conclusions. Why not tell them that you will start the next term with a tournament so they get a a goal with their summer playing.
The successful 14 graduates of the ECU School Chess Teacher course held in Alcaudete de la Jara, Toledo, Spain 1-3 June 2018. The course was run by Luis Blasco of the Madrid Chess Academy

Thinking of next term ...

  • Do not forget to say THANK YOU for supporting chess this term, to the children, the principal, the teachers, and the parents. A simple e-mail is enough, and it is a great way to make them continue to support chess.
  • In a lot of countries the teachers gather at school one week before the children to discuss the term to come and to get education themselves. This is a great chance to promote chess in general and specific chess activities for the schools. But you normally have to book this timeslot before the vacation...
  • Take a look at the tournament schedule. If there is an early tournament, maybe you need to think about it before summer.
  • Send an e-mail with instructive chess exercises for the summer to the parents and children 
  • Before the new school year starts, meet up with other chess instructors/teachers to inspire each other and share ideas and excercises. You should organise something now.

About First Rank and ECU Education

  • This newsletter is a co-operation between European Chess Union Education Commission (ECU EDU) and ChessPlus, a social entrepreneur company working with brain games as teaching tools.
  • All around Europe chess is becoming an important pedagogic tool, and we want to share and develop the best ideas!
  • ECU comprises 54 countries
  • The goal of ECU EDU is to establish a new standard of chess teaching to develop social and intellectual skills.
  • We want the chess activity in your school activitity to succeed!
  • We run training courses for chess instructors and teachers around Europe

The Summer Puzzle

White to play and make check mate in two moves 
(Answer below)

ECU Education Calendar 2018

ECU School Tournaments
European School Chess Championship, Krakow, 29 June - 8 July  Information

ECU School Chess Teacher Training Courses 
Hamburg, Germany   22-23 June (Boris Bruhn for information)
Uppsala, Sweden 1-2 September (Jesper Hall for information)
Batumi, Georgia, 30 September - 1 October (Jesper Hall for information)
London, England 8-9 December (John Foley for information)

We Want Your Feedback!

What do you want this kind of newsletter? What was good, and what was bad? Please let us know your Feedback

Have a great chess summer! The next issue of First Rank will come in the end of August

All around the world children take the chance to play chess outside!


The Summer puzzle

The only possiblity is to promote to knights in a row. 1.e7-e8N Kf6-e6 2.d7-d8N Mate.
Subscribe to this Newsletter
With support from the Raedler Foundation.

Unsubscribe from this list

ChessPlus with the European Chess Union
71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden
London, England

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp