What levels are currently being taught? What are the class timings? You teach from basic or only advanced?
These are often the first few questions we are asked when we tell people about the plan to start Aspire Chess Center. After a bit of planning, the game plan for the first few months has been decided as follows.
There will be two class groups:
1. Intermediate / Advanced:
Monday, Wednesday, and Friday: 6 pm to 8 pm. Fee: 1,500
2. Beginner levels:
Tuesday/Thursday: 6: 00 pm to 8 pm. Fee: 1,000.
[Check Update in the end]
Currently, only five students are enrolled and all of them belong to the advanced group. As the chess club evolves, the groups will evolve with them. These two groups will later (a few months later) will be broken down based on student level.
Plans for the near future (To be implemented in the first three months):
Playing session: Saturday/Sunday: 2 pm to 6 pm. Fee: 500
Why playing session? What does it mean?
The problem with being a chess player in Pondicherry is that this place is a separate state, so kids from Pondicherry cannot play state-level events organized anywhere in Tamil Nadu. Chennai is one of the hot spots for Chess in India where many strong players play regularly. This means that the growth of kids from Pondicherry is limited because of not having access to stronger players to play with and regular tournaments. To overcome this deficit, the club/playing session will be introduced where stronger players from Pondicherry, Chennai and other districts will be invited. The session will be made fun and competitive through different rules and a central leaderboard!
Coming soon 🙂
Chess For Life Program:
I noticed that many (well, almost all, except a handful) Chess training centers focus on the professional aspect of Chess. So, Chess is taught in such a way that the kids gradually become good at it on a professional level and are made to play many tournaments as they progress. This is great, but I notice that many parents are more interested in the psychological benefit that Chess has to offer more than turning every kid in the block into a Chess Grandmaster. Chess has so much to offer an eager mind. One doesn’t have to turn towards the professional route to get the most out of learning Chess. It’s just like music. Learning to play the guitar or the violin can be a great companion as we grow up, but not everyone needs to become as good as Hans Zimmer.
Aspire Chess Center is a newborn kid right now. As it grows older, the learning journey will be more customized along two paths. One is the pro route for talented players and the second is going to be the Chess For Life route!
It’s going to be fun 🙂
Not everyone finds it easy to travel to Mission street in the evening hours. People traveling from far off places (Outskirts of Pondicherry, plus outstation players) might find this difficult. Therefore, there will be two levels on Saturday/Sunday morning – Advanced and Intermediate level – for players from other nearby districts of Tamil Nadu (Cuddalore, Villupuram, Chennai, etc) and players from the outskirts of Pondicherry. The timing is tentatively 10 am to 1 pm. The weekend session could also be a camp-styled session. Stay tuned!
Theory and Practice should always go hand in hand. Regular tournaments will be organized on weekends. Open tournaments for all players as well as strong round-robin events for advanced players will be planned and organized.
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[UPDATE: JUNE 23]
The plan above is tentative and will evolve as we grow. One change I wanted to make is to turn the two-day beginner class to three. To make this change possible, we may have to change the days for the other group (advanced/intermediate). I was thinking of Mon/Tue/Wed- for adv/intermediate and Thu/Fri/Sat for beginners. I am also contemplating a few more changes, so please note that the plan above is tentative and is likely to change.
[UPDATE: JUNE 26]
Finalized class plan for July can be read on this blog.