How does Chess at Three Work?
We teach the game of chess through storytelling. We come to the home (45min-1hour long lessons) so you can choose the best day and time that suits you. Our tutors are fun and creative and will get your child loving chess!
What can be expected in a lesson?
Each week there will be stories, games, creative instruction and possibly “chessercises” (physically getting up and moving like the chess piece – super fun). All stories build off each other, so it’s important to start at the beginning and progress through them all. It allows for the world we created to unfold.
The first 10 lessons are the piece mechanics: how they move, what they like to do and their relationship to each other. At this point they will have played many small games using a select few pieces (they are fantastic for learning the full game but in doses). By the tenth week (approximately) your child will know all the pieces to play full games. But a teacher may repeat some lessons as well – repetition, taking their time and being thorough is always a good thing.
The next section will be basic strategy: how to play a full game and what sequences to use in the beginning. After strategy we focus on sportsmanship. We take the children on an adventure story of how to be friends when they play, and how to win and lose. We have many lessons post the core curriculum that dig deeper and provide great amounts of fun while they are learning a complex game that teaches them incredible skills.
How many children in a lesson?
We offer lessons for any amount of children. There are great benefits for a 1-on-1 home lesson or a group lesson.
We can provide 1-on-1 lessons.
We can also provide lessons for groups of 2, 3, or 4+ children. The sky is the limit.
Do you provide the chess board?
Yes, our tutors will come each week with their own chess set and board to use for the lesson. Our sets are vinyl and easily cleaned and our pieces are very distinguishable.
What is the benefit of a 1-on-1 private lesson?
There are many advantages to having one of our amazing tutors come to your home to work privately with your child. A couple of the benefits are:
- Focused attention on your child’s needs and learning style
- Individualized creative curriculum our tutor tailors for your child
What is the benefit of a group lesson?
Group lessons are fun for children to have a peer in the room with them. A couple of the benefits for the children are:
- Children getting to learn to win and lose with each other
- They get to learn teamwork and communication
Do you offer group lessons?
Yes we do. We love groups. We let parents design their own so that they and their friends can choose the best day and time that they all want.
How long are lessons?
Lessons are 45 minutes to 1 hour in length. We base the length of the lesson on the child. Our tutors work hard on expanding the child’s attention span, but we also want to be aware of when a child is tired and rather than allowing them to get cranky or disinterested we shift gears into another activity (within our chess world such as chessercises) or we may end a little bit before the hour is up.
What are Chessercises?
Chessercises are physical exercises for the students. Getting up in the room and acting and moving like a chess piece or playing physical games in the room to solidify what’s being taught in the lesson. Chessercises help with memory and groundedness in the game.
Do you teach in schools?
Yes. We love teaching in schools. We have tutors available for in-school lessons or after-school lessons. We offer a variety of ways to partner with us. Please see our school page.
How long until my child learns chess?
This all depends on the child, but we don’t want the answer to be that vague. Each child learns at a different pace, but generally our tutors will have your child knowing all the pieces and ready to play full games in ten weeks. Our goal is to be thorough and as fun as possible. We repeat lessons if necessary and can move through some aspects faster if needed.
How does payment work?
When you register with us you will submit a credit card to be on a secure file. We will run the card each week after each lesson that is conducted and a receipt will be sent to you. We do not do cash or checks or packaged deals.
Do you offer package pricing?
We actually don’t. We do all payment on a per lesson basis. When a lesson is complete we collect payment at that time and send you a receipt.
Why do you teach through stories?
Stories are very powerful and are perfect for children. Children have an astounding ability to retain stories down to the last detail. In some cases, children can recall a story word for word. It’s incredible how the young mind is able to remember long stories but not abstract facts. Telling a child a rule in three sentences may only confuse them because they have nothing to connect with. Instead of telling them what to do or what something is, reveal it through a story. This allows the listener to figure things out alongside the characters. They can answer their own questions or be open to the answer that is given because the story explains how this answer came about.
Young children need reasons for things. Arbitrary rules don’t make sense to children (or adults either). This is why children ask ‘why’ all the time. They are trying to get to the root of the rule, its justification. All children are brimming with curiosity. They want to know everything. That’s why stories are the heart of the Chess At Three Core Curriculum. The stories funnel all of the ‘why’ questions that children are so quick to ask into the principles of basic chess strategy.
Stories also accommodate different levels of chess experience in the classroom. If an absolute beginner and someone who has some chess experience are in the same class, they will still be able to connect to the story and learn something, regardless of skill level. These stories engage everyone.
Do you come to the home?
Yes. We offer in home personal attention. We are trying to make this the most convenient for you. Our specialty is coming to your home at the day and time that suits you best. We have many wonderful certified tutors in the city which allows us to cater to your needs. Granted some time slots are hard to fill, so please be patient with us.
What times are lesson offered?
We offer lessons in the morning, afternoon and evenings. Our tutors teach all day long. We even teach on the weekends.
Do you teach on the weekends?
Yes, we offer lessons any day of the week and any time of the day. Especially the weekends!
Do you teach on holidays?
Yes. If you want a lesson on a holiday and we have a tutor available we are more than happy for lessons to happen. Our tutors make their own schedules so if you have been placed with a tutor already and want a lesson on a holiday then reach out to them and request a lesson. If your tutor cannot accommodate your request please contact the office and we can arrange another tutor to come at that time.
Are your lessons weekly?
Yes, for the most part yes. We have found that conducting lessons on a weekly basis is the best for the child. A week is a wonderful allotment of time between lessons, it allows the child to miss the lesson and be eager for the next while at the same time it recurs often enough that they retain the information from week to week.
Do substitutions happen?
Yes. Substitutions do take place. We value our tutors making meaningful connections with you and your child and wish for them to never take a week off but sometimes our tutors need to travel or maybe go on an audition. If this happens they will provide a substitute tutor upon your approval. Our tutors all teach from the same curriculum so it is usually a seamless transition.
What if I want to change the schedule of our lessons?
Not a problem at all. Reach out to your tutor since they are in charge of their specific teaching schedule. They will most likely be able to accommodate the change. If they are not able to, please contact us at the office and we can provide a substitute for the temporary or permanent schedule change.
What if I want to leave for vacation or take a long break?
Please send us a postcard! And inform your tutor in advance and they will work the scheduling out with you.
What if I want to have a different tutor?
We definitely understand that not everyone tutor connects with every child. If you are displeased or unsatisfied with your tutor please let us know – this is helpful for us. We will promptly replace your tutor with another one. We have many.
Can we get a trial lesson?
Yes. We love trial lessons. We offer free, 30min trial lessons to see if you’d like to continue. We ask that they be scheduled at the day and time of when you would want to move forward with lessons – it helps with scheduling. Click here to sign up!
Who are your tutors?
Scroll down and you’ll see them!
Are your tutors vetted and background checked?
Yes. We take ultimate care that our tutors are thoroughly screened. They go through a rigorous process to work for us and then are approved through the highest level of fact checking. We want the best and safest for you.
What if my child is sick?
Well we hope your little one feels better soon. Please contact your tutor and inform them of the sickness and they will not show up. If it’s last minute we will not enforce the cancellation policy due to sickness.
What is the cost for a lesson?
Cost per lesson is different according to how many children are in a lesson and according to the time of day the lesson takes place. Get in touch with us to find out more.
How do I register?
To register please click this link and submit a request. One of our pros will reach out and set you up with all the pertinent info and a link to register to get lessons started.
Why is there a waiver?
We provide a waiver to help you and us. Our waiver allows us to enter and work in your home and to protect all parties involved.