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Chess clubs encourage learning, and a group of retirees is convincing students that chess has something to offer that even video games don’t have.

Chess Clubs Encourage Learning“You can play with somebody face to face,” said Rutland Elementary School third grade student Hailey Foster. “It’s a fun way of thinking.

Two after school chess clubs at Rutland and Mt. Juliet elementary schools are shaping up as a means of developing higher order thinking skills, and district educators are taking notice.  There are also new elective chess classes at West Wilson Middle School.

In 2013, retirees Bob Multra and Phil Quarles started the after school chess club at Rutland.  It started with 16 fifth-graders and now has 42 participants in grades 3-5. In addition between 80-90 students have signed up for the nine week classes at West Wilson Middle.

“It kind of shows you how you should be learning,” said Rutland fourth-grader Zach Ankne. “How you play the game is kind of complex, like tests.”

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