To get kids learning, one math teacher gets them playing

Fourth-graders at Forest Lake Elementary are learning math skills and more from chess and cribbage.
By Ben Goessling, Star Tribune

Last update: December 01, 2007 – 10:05 PM

It’s shortly after noon on a Tuesday at Forest Lake Elementary School, and a crowd is forming around fourth-grader Jessica Palomino.

She stares across at Christian Forster, anticipating his next moves as he tries an attack that could knock her out of the game. She counters, steadying herself while glancing at the players on either side as classmates wait to see what will happen next.

“You need vision to see how other people are going to think,” she says. “There’s a lot of strategy to this game.”

This isn’t on a playground at recess. It’s in front of a chess board during math class.

The fourth-graders at Forest Lake Elementary are learning chess and cribbage — and the computation and strategic thinking skills that go with them — as part of a new program teachers hope will put lessons into practice and give students more constructive entertainment options at home.

Here is the full story.

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