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Art by Laura Sherman
Your Chess Coach
Page created 3/14/09 modified 3/31/09
Laura and Dan Sherman
Dear Friends of Chess,
This last month we had the honor of giving a chess event to the Boys and Girls Clubs
of Tampa! What an amazing group of children, all eager to learn and play chess. We
also gave an event in Naples to a small group of kids, which was fun. These events
are free and are designed to introduce chess to children and families.
Many of the articles you have read here in our newsletters have been republished in
various papers, magazines and blogs around the world. It is incredibly rewarding to
see one’s words translated into dozens of languages. We have been asked to write a
weekly column for a major online publication in the Philippines, which is very exciting!
In between chess instruction, events and other activities we are working to finish our e-
courses and books, so that parents and educators can teach children of all ages to
play chess and keep them interested in the game. It looks like we may already have a
Book your online lesson now and we will send you a free gift!
One Child’s Chess Experience
The room is silent. You can literally hear the people breathing
around you while you study the sixty-four checkered squares
in front of you. Glancing over at the chess clock you see you
have plenty of time left in your game. A move cries out to be
made, but you bide your time and check for others. You know
that a move made in haste could cost your dearly. Finally,
confident that your initial idea is sound, you reach out a hand
and grasp your knight, hopping it to its intended destination.
There is an audible gasp from a few behind you.
You hit your clock signaling your opponent’s turn. Only then do
you steal a glance at him. He meets your eyes with a look
that speaks defeat. You see that he knows it is just a matter
of time. He shakes his head and stares at the hopeless
position. You lean back in your chair and watch him study the
board for possible flaws to your plan. There are none. It is
hard to stifle the grin that threatens to spread across your face.
Care to play a game with me?
You glance around at your spectators. Some recognize your opponent’s fate, while others wear puzzled expressions. Two whisper to each
other and finally nod their heads in understanding. One winks at you in admiration and turns to observe a game with a less determined
The fact that you are only ten years old, playing in an adult tournament, might have intimidated some, but not you. No, you know that your
dedicated study and eagerness to learn the game has paid off. You continue to improve each time you play. Your teachers at school
notice a difference, writing glowing praise home to your parents on a regular basis now. You know that you can do whatever you put your
mind to do and it shows in various aspects of your life.
Your opponent shakes his head, stops the clock and reaches out his hand to you, signaling his resignation. You shake his hand, smile and
offer to analyze the game with him, a ritual amongst players. He returns your smile and nods. You know he doesn't care about your age,
because he knows your analysis will help him improve. How many activities are there where an adult would be eager to hear the thoughts
of a child? As you set up in the next room to go over the game you notice other adults have followed. They too want to hear what you have
to say. There is no better feeling.
Julie Yeung Captures First Place
(Laura Sherman and her husband Dan are professional chess coaches – visit their site at www.YourChessCoach.com)
We are proud to announce that Julie Yeung, one of our online students, took first place
in the 3rd Annual Cal State All-Girls Tournament! At age 9 she bested a field that
included sixth-graders, posting a 4-0 score. This is her first such triumph since
winning her first tournament as a kindergartener in 2004.
When asked about her previous tournament play, Julie modestly described it as
“sometimes good, sometimes not so good. My major problem is that I make
mistakes.” However in this last tournament her mother commented, “She was patient,
alert and focused.”
Dan has been her online instructor for several months and has been pleased with her
progress. She is very dedicated to improving and studies hard, asking good
questions. Julie’s keen mind and sense for a good attack makes teaching her a
breeze. In the last tournament she had a few very difficult positions, but stayed
focused and was victorious.
Julie also shines at various Chinese martial arts competitions. She has been
selected by the US Badminton Association to represent the United States in doubles
play this summer. When asked if the mental skills acquired through chess have
helped her in other activities she replied, “Yes, for sure! Chess helps me to improve
the analytical skills, helps me to be focused and helps me to perform under pressure.”
Your Chess Coach | 411 Cleveland Street, PMB #220, Clearwater, FL 33755 firstname.lastname@example.org
Carl Watts, Nutrition Response Testing Certified, WFG Associate,
Nutritionist, Artist, Designer, Problem Solver, Author, Publisher, Philosopher
PO Box 285
Tujunga, CA 91042
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|Hard work and determination pay off