Students in after-school chess program are nobody’s pawn
By Gloria Bradley • Staff Writer • December 11, 2010

FAIRVIEW — Some students at Kiptopeke Elementary School are joining a group that has included Ben Franklin, Edgar Allan Poe, Queens Elizabeth I and II, Christopher Columbus, John Lennon, and Al Gore — they are becoming chess players.

Stefanie Hadden of Cape Charles is the volunteer coordinator for the newly formed Kiptopeke Chess Club that meets each Tuesday in the school library from 3:45-4:45 p.m.

Hadden had read about the numerous benefits of chess in schools for children including improving decision-making, problem solving, logical thinking and concentration.

“Chess is a great academic exercise,” said Hadden. “It helps with impulse control because they have to stop and think before they make their move.”

Hadden said there is no fee to participate, and the club provides the chess sets for the meeting.

Ken Miller, a math teacher at Northampton High School, donates his time to instruct the children in the rules of chess.

Miller has been a longtime chess player, and he helped start a well-received chess club at Yorktown Middle School. He said that 10 percent of the student population played chess.

“It was successful there, so I wanted to repeat it here,” said Miller.

He said that the benefits of chess include helping teach children to think and improvement in their grades.

Full story here.

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