Youth Chess Club begins Dec. 30

Published 5:19 pm Thursday, December 29, 2011

Students from Mrs. Smith’s fourth grade class at Polk Central learn to play chess. (photo submitted)

This Friday afternoon, Dec. 30, at 3 p.m. there will be the first meeting of the Polk County Youth Chess Club.

Dr. Brian Crissy and other adult coaches will teach. All level of players are welcome.

Currently, the Polk Central Elementary School in Mill Spring has a weekly chess class in Mrs. Smith’s fifth grade. Soon fourth graders at Polk Central also can apply to begin chess instruction.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Program organizers are interested in expanding the program of chess instruction in the elementary school system besides having a monthly chess club meeting.  People interested in supporting this or in getting chess into their child’s school can contact Lynne Parsons at

Research says that test scores improved by 17.3 percent for students regularly engaged in chess classes. In 30 nations across the globe, chess is incorporated in the country’s scholastic curriculum.

Chess benefits children by developing decision-making, critical thinking, evaluating and planning, and perseverance. Chess also improves concentration while promoting independence.

Mrs. Smith says that one reason she appreciates what her class learns in chess is simply practice with winning and losing with grace. The idea for this program began in Mrs. Smith’s class two years ago due to a child in her class being in the Big Brother Big Sister program and the Big organized the chess class with Mrs. Smith’s help for his and the class’ benefit.

The first chess club meeting will be held at Morning Glory Farm in Mill Spring which is located a mile north of Polk Central School off Hwy. 9  from 3 – 5 p.m.  Chess sets will be available for use, but youths can bring their own if they have them. Pr-eregistration is appreciated, but not required. The meeting will be held in the building by the pond.

Call Lynne Parsons at 828-894-5595 or email for further information.

– article submitted by Lynne Parsons