Very few games require as much thought and training as chess. Parents must play an active role if they want to help their children develop their natural talent for the game. Chess lessons are an important part of the effort, but there are many other ways to help as well. Here are five examples of how any parent can help their child become a better chess player.
1. Play the Game
Parents need to learn the game of chess for themselves and make it a part of their family game night or weekend activities. Parents that understand the game become better guides for their children. The knowledge also helps parents to understand the enthusiasm their child feels for the game.
Remember to play each match seriously. Chess matches just for fun do not help to develop skills because players often move pieces randomly without any forethought. Take it seriously and allow the child to have the time to think through every move.
2. Record Their Games
Record all their games and have the child review the videos of their losses. However, the point is not to emphasize a loss or to consider the game a failure. Instead, use the video as a teaching moment. Encourage them to inspect their performance and deduce where their problem initially began. Awareness of past mistakes can prevent future failed strategies.
3. Play Other Games
Many board games can help children to develop strategic thinking skills that will improve their chess game. Games like Risk, Ravensburger Labyrinth, or even Monopoly force players to think ahead for success. Look for these types of games that are not only reliant on luck to succeed.
The strategic thinking used in many board games is not much different from how players must work out their moves in chess. The use of other games helps to prevent potential chess burnout. By using strategic planning in a variety of situations the child improves their problem-solving technique, so it becomes natural and easy for them in any competition.
4. Schedule Music Lessons
In addition to chess lessons, schedule music lessons for the child too. Studies have shown that playing an instrument helps to improve memory, boost creative thought, and relieve stress. Musicians also tend to be more mentally alert than people that do not practice music.
Each of the benefits gained by the musical instruction can improve the performance of a chess player. A good memory, being mentally alert, and the use of creative thinking helps players to plan their own moves and remember the habits and behaviors of their opponent.
5. Watch Grandmaster Games
Nothing is more effective in any sport, game, or activity than to watch and learn from the best. Mentoring has been an important part of many trades for centuries for this reason. Find and watch videos of tournaments and take the time to thoroughly inspect the methods of grandmasters. Put more effort into the viewing of the game than just to see who wins.
Have the child watch the opening lines and discuss the style of strategy the player uses. Ask the child to guess what move the player will make next and have them explain why they believe this to encourage critical thought.
Parents can learn to appreciate the value of chess skills. The game of chess helps children to learn how to deal with loss, stay focused, and problem solve. The benefits make every moment of the study of the game worthwhile. At Chess Teacher, we offer online live lessons that help to develop the skills of any player. Visit our website to learn more about this opportunity.