Thursday, January 3, 2013


I bought a chess set for my three year old grandson for Christmas. He's three, but a very bright three.  My daughter recently had his reading tested and he reads at a second-grade level. We played chess today as long as his attention span could manage it. He understands the general concept of the game (movement of pieces and the need to control the center of the board) but not the subtle concepts and metaphors of the game. 
  • Sacrificing one piece for the greater good is sometimes important. Sometimes it's not.
"In the end we may have to choose between actions that might pull down the temple of humanity itself rather than surrender even a single member of the family to the executioner." - Yerucham Amitai
  • Power perceived is power achieved. Power is achieved by relative position and the ability of one piece to exercise power.
The further ahead you see and understand the threats in a given position (or posible position), the better you will be at playing chess.
  • Looking before you leap will keep you from grief.
Having more balls than brains is a good thing at times. (If you exercised your brains, you wouldn't go near a battlefield) But in chess, brains trumps brawn. 
  • You can play a game of chess if you loose your queen early in the game, but it's a lot easier to win if she's on the board. The queen is important to success in the game.
But being three, he decided that he'd rather play with the remote control car that he also received for Christmas. When I bought it, the car was packaged. Today I got to see what it would do.

Sometimes it's good to play chess. Other times, the remote control car is more fun. When you're only three years old, it all works. He turns four at the end of this month. (I blocked the roadway with "child at play" barriers so that he could play with the car.) There wasn't any traffic on this residential street while we drove the car.


Opus #6 said...

OMG so sweet! And a happy boy. And smart. He must have one proud family.

LL said...

He's a good boy. And with some instruction, he might make a good chess player. I haven't introduced him to a move clock yet.

WoFat said...

He needs a emote control chess set.

LL said...

WoFat - Believe it or not, there is a chess game out there for kids that's played with cards of some sort where "everyone wins". That way your feelings aren't crushed by a loss.

My son-in-law's relatives suggested that a chess set wasn't a good idea because there is a somebody loses when each game is played and they wanted to get him one of those "chess for winners" things. My son-in-law put his foot down and forbade it.

darlin said...

Oh my goodness, what a sweetheart and smart too! I'm glad your S-I-L put his foot down and didn't allow the for winners only version, what is a child to learn from that? I admire your style of teaching, there's some valuable life lessons in what you're saying and displaying.

WoFat, you make me laugh!

Azra said...

Teaching him those life lessons from an early age eh? Good :)

The car is a reminder to have fun!

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