The Annex Chess Club children’s chess programme is a fun and exciting way for your child to learn the game of chess and meet children from across the GTA who share the same passion. Our programme is designed to take children of all ages from beginners at the most basic level right through to CFC-rated club players.
Our programme incorporates class lessons, group work, individual problem-solving, and various forms of tournament play to reinforce and evaluate chess abilities at each skill level. It is most important that children be placed in the correct level to ensure maximum benefit of the programme – see below.
Graduates of the programme learn the full range of tactical skills (pins, forks, skewers, etc); are introduced to opening, middle, and endgame theory; are capable of in-depth analysis of their own and others’ games; are familiar with chess notation; and finally, are knowledgeable of the range of resources that are available to continue to improve their games after the classes finish.
All ages and skill levels are welcome!
[Note: We also offer classes for teens and adults – see our Adult Instructional Programme.]
Find the right level for your child
- The children’s classes below are not age specific – i.e., any child at any age can be in any of the classes. Levels are based entirely on the children’s knowledge of the game.
- We reserve the right to move children from one class level to another.
- In our experience, many children either overstate their knowledge of the game, or don’t like to be designated as anything less than advanced. But children are best served when instruction is given at the appropriate level. We urge parents, even those with a limited knowledge of the game, to communicate with their children to find out where they would fit best. This helps ensure that the classes run smoothly for everyone from an early stage, but most of all, it ensures that children are having a great experience, playing, laughing, and growing together with peers learning at the same level.
Repeating a class
- Each of the following classes are designed to build a particular range of chess skills. However, because children learn at different rates, repeating the same class (beginner, intermediate, advanced) for another session, or several sessions, is often a good idea. This allows children to consolidate their knowledge of a particular range of skills before moving on to the next level. Everyone learns differently and it never helps to skip over fundamental skills. Working on the same core curriculum, our instructors change the approach and emphasis each term so no two sessions are alike.
Kids’ Beginner Chess:
This class covers a full introduction to the pieces: their movements, their values, capturing, good trades vs. bad trades. Check, checkmate and castling are introduced, but the overwhelming focus is on ensuring that the pieces and their movements are learned and internalized.
Please ensure this is the correct level for your child: This class is for children who range from having no background in chess to those who have learned how the pieces move but who still don’t have a strong, automatic command of all piece movements. The children who take this class may not know how to checkmate or castle.
Kids’ Intermediate Chess:
This class reviews the pieces and their movements, but goes into further detail on their values (depending on a given position, situation, etc.). It covers check and checkmate, introduces en passant, explains the rules of stalemates and draws, introduces tactics, and includes a small amount of theory surrounding openings, middle, and endgames.
Please ensure this is the correct level for your child: This class is for children who have a strong command of the pieces and their movements, but not necessarily castling and en passant. Children at this level may know how to checkmate, but in any case they do not have a dominant command of doing so. If all of your child’s games end in checkmates or draws, they should be in advanced class; if not, place them here, because checkmating is one of the tough aspects of chess to master, and it takes time and practice to gain a vision for it.
Kids’ Advanced Chess:
This class works on final preparations for children to begin CFC-rated club-level play, and teaches all the rules of the game at a tournament level. The en passant rule is covered and becomes part of regular games. Chess notation is introduced and covered, with the aim of having children write down all the moves of their games properly. Opening, middle, and endgame theory is covered, including advanced tactics and further insights into sound overall principles of chess strategy.
Please ensure this is the correct level for your child: This class is for children who have a strong, automatic command of checkmate and castling, and whose games all end in either checkmates or draws. Children in this class may not have an automatic command of the en passant rule, or be fluent in chess notation and the game analysis that goes with it, but they should be strong young players. The children in this class are sometimes selected to play on the chess teams at their respective schools. We do not recommend your child participate in this class if he or she is relatively new to the game.
Kids’ Advanced Chess – Club Level:
This class features weekly “slow” chess games using chess clocks, and analysis of these games. Students will delve into complex opening, middle, and endgame concepts, during the analysis of their own games. Students will become increasingly comfortable with elements of “slow” tournament games, including managing their clocks and scoresheets.
Please ensure this is the correct level for your child: This class is for children who have a strong, automatic command of checkmate, castling, and en passant, and who are fluent in chess notation. The children in this class are essentially ready to play at club level, but may still want to add to what is already a full repertoire by playing and analyzing with other children their age. We do not recommend your child participate in this class if he or she is relatively new to the game. Indeed, we recommend children take the advanced class first, before moving on to this level.
Annex Chess Club provides all learning materials, boards, clocks, and pieces
Sep/Oct 2017: Kids’ Classes – 7 weeks – Sep 11 to Oct 30 – $126
Note: no classes on Oct 9 (Thanksgiving)
|Monday||6:15 to 7:15 pm||Beginner/Intermediate||Artiom Samsonkin|
|6:15 to 7:15 pm||Advanced||Michael Humphreys|
Nov-Dec 2017: Kids’ Classes – 7 weeks – Nov 6 to Dec 11 + Jan 8 – $126
|Monday||5:15 to 6:15 pm||Beginner||Keith Denning|
|6:15 to 7:15 pm||Intermediate||Artiom Samsonkin|
|6:15 to 7:15 pm||Advanced||Michael Humphreys|
|8:15 to 9:15 pm||4-week Openings Course Nov 20 to Dec 11 – just $72||Artiom Samsonkin|
Costs and Registration
- Sessions are $126 for a 7-week course. Register at the front desk in the Great Hall at 918 Bathurst between 6:00 and 7:00 pm any Monday night.
- Single classes are $25 each.
- Late registrations are accepted.
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information