​                                                    ​​​Frequently Asked Questions and Common Chess Myths:

1. Why Chess?

There is a mountain of evidence, scientific and anecdotal, that points to the intellectual and social benefits of chess.  A good chess player will demonstrate a variety of higher order thinking skills that will transfer directly to any academic discipline. Besides, it's fun!

2. How Can I Get The PSL Chess Program In My School?

​Most of our schools have the support of the PTA. We would be happy to meet with your administration and discuss a program tailor fit for your school. Quite often it is the spark from a parent or teacher that encourages the administration to choose chess as an enrichment program for the students.

3. Are Your Chess Instructors Screened And Background Checked?

Yes! All of our instructors must be screened, fingerprinted and background checked as per school district policy.

 4. Does PSL Offer Any Programs Outside The Classroom Setting?

Yes! We offer "classes" of all sizes in a variety of locations. Any given week you will find PSL Chess in Starbucks, libraries, community centers, private homes and more. We are committed to finding a program for every student and every budget. Just ask!

5. Does My Child Need A Private Coach Or Private Lessons?

It depends. While we believe every child could benefit from one on one chess instruction, we know families have many time and financial commitments to choose from. If your child shows interest and dedication in playing chess and/or competing in USCF Nationally Rated tournaments, then private instruction would be extremely beneficial. Private lessons include an initial assessment where the instructor will determine the player's strengths and weaknesses, and then custom tailor a lesson plan to suit the player's needs. Many of our PSLChess parents have seen marked improvement in their child's focus and overall academic performance after beginning private instruction or coaching. We at PSL Chess say, please consider it!  We offer a variety of packages and price points.

 6. Is My Child Ready To Compete In Tournaments?

Does your child demonstrate an interest in the game and a commitment to learning? If so, then yes! Tournaments are a great way to ignite a child's fervor for the game of chess. Individuals competing for the  first time need to get a USCF membership. Your child will compete with children of a similar level until their USCF rating is established. Our PSL Chess students love to watch their ratings improve and even compete as part of a team for their school or organization. The immediate feedback that a tournament provides spurs children to excellence and encourages good sportsmanship.  PSL Chess hosts regular official USCF rated tournaments and we stay connected to other local hosts offering USCF rated tournaments. We can help you find a match!  Self confidence, school pride, good sportsmanship, fun contests and shiny trophies, what's not to love? Ask us how to get involved.

Myth #1.  Chess Is Too Hard.

Wrong!  The average person, as young as four years old, can learn the rules of chess in a short time. While chess is complex it is not complicated, one of the beautiful characteristics of the game. With all of it's intricacies and the degree of skill one has to develop in the game to achieve measured success, chess has a magic all it's own, a true art form.

 Myth #2. Children Today Are Too Stimulated With "Screentime" To Enjoy A Slow Game Like Chess.

Come watch a room full of rambunctious young students fall into an intense hush and hovered over their chessboards for a mesmerizing experience! Chess doesn't just improve concentration, it induces it.

Myth #3. Chess Is Just A Game.

Gasp! No, seriously, it is a game, but with the hearts of  teachers, we at PSL Chess cannot say it is "just" a game. Chess parallels life. Many students of the game have been transformed by their involvement with chess. Academic improvement is noteworthy, but the lessons of choices and consequences, singular responsibility for every move and clear objectives are applicable to life away from the board.  No chess game ever repeats itself, which means one creates new ideas with every game. It's a game that brings young and old together and bridges all cultural and socioeconomic divides. Now that is a game we can all play!


Does All This Chess Talk Make You Dizzy?