Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Knight's Tour

I've been wanting to have Alexandra learn how to play chess for quite awhile. But, I barely play and, honestly, I haven't found it that enjoyable. Last week, though, we went to an intro class (basically a sales pitch) for chess books, etc, by Chess Coach Steve Schneider. I really enjoyed the class! He starts you out with just one pawn and you play pawn games. Very fun!

So, I bought the game (above) and the "Basics" book. Last week, we learned how to play various pawn games - and the skills to win at those games! Today, we started with our second piece, the knight. And, we learned a fun game called knight's tour.

We both really enjoyed this game. (You can find lots of versions of it online.) In our game, we each used a 4x4 grid of the chess board. Then, you fill each space with some kind of marker (we used citrus erasers). Then, remove one piece and place your knight. Using the legal move of the knight (basically an L-shape where you move 2 squares 1 way and 1 square another way), you try to collect as many pieces as you can. But, you can only move to a space where there is still a space - you cannot move to an empty square!

Alexandra beat me almost every time. (We'd take turns playing and see who got the best score.) We moved the starting square of the knight to different spots to see what worked best.

Overall, it was a really fun game... AND, it taught Alexandra how to move a knight.

We're really enjoying our basics book. They said they'll be having sale prices before Christmas. Here's a link to the website! The book teaches basic chess along with other fun games (like the pawn games and knight's tour) and has fun activities, too.


Teacher of One said...

We have this book too!!! I bought it last spring at convention. I have not used it with Gabe yet... time. But I thought it could teach us both so we could play with Daddy.

MommyShan said...

I'd love to check out your book! I've been wanting to learn to play chess forever.

You always do the coolest things!

live4evermom said...

My middle son loves to play chess. Looks like fun.


Robin said...

I like the idea of the Knight game as a way for me to play with GB. Because at this point, GB is way past my chess abilities. So I gladly hand off chess playing duties to Daddy and big brother, Jabem. But I think I could handle this version.
My problem is that I just don't like to visualize how the game is going to be played 5-6 turns into the future. That's too much guessing for me. I'm not a good strategist.

Marsha said...

Oi! My son would LOVE this! He is begging for me to let him join our homeschool group's chess club this next year (if he's old enough). I'll have to check it out-- he may get one more Christmas gift this year as I've already done all my shopping.

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