For most kids, a typical learning experience from grades one through twelve relies heavily on absorbing and memorizing, then reciting facts learned. A small number of kids thrive in that environment, but aside from the straight A students, a large number of kids have varying degrees of difficulty with this type of learning. Experts have postulated various reasons for this from outside forces such as income level, neighborhood, family environment, to innate talent or lack thereof.
Why Chess Matters attacks this problem head on using chess as sophisticated learning tool. Citing evidence from psychology, learning theory and personal experience, Mr. Ashley shows how chess can create better learners, stronger families and children with improved self-confidence. Background does not matter, nor does innate talent.
Contrary to popular beliefs, you do not need to be smart to play chess, but chess does help you get “smarter,” but not in the traditional sense. What learning chess correctly does is improve what psychologists call “non-cognitive skills.” These are skills and attitudes that help learning occur, and they themselves can be learned. Examples include grit, determination, patience, self-confidence, problem solving and a host of other qualities that help kids happily succeed.
Additionally, through the process of learning how to teach chess to their children, parents can learn better parenting skills and improved relationships with their children. Parents don’t need to be good at chess or even know about it. Why Chess Matters takes care of that through an extensive explanation of what chess is all about.