Chess art

June 21st, 2010

A new chess art poster is now available for those who enjoy the visual side of chess.

Chess poster

This chess art collage was a fun project which I created with acrylics, gesso, some objects and cut-outs.   I gave it to my students as a prize choice. I received a much better reaction than I expected -I did not have enough posters with me at the time.
To purchase a chess art poster, you can visit the online Educational Chess store.
Discounts for large quantities also available.

Contest Giveaway – Chess camp and art camp

May 27th, 2010

Educational Chess is having a contest giveaway for kids ages 6-17 who live in Orange County and some parts of Los Angeles County.
Registration is free, and the winners receive free chess camp and art camp entries and gift certificates. Ends June 14, 2010.
Submit your entry at

Kids’ Chess tournament in San Clemente, OC

April 27th, 2010

On May 23, there will be an unrated tournament in San Clemente, CA for all kids who love chess and want to improve their chess, make new friends, and help out a charity. So, this way, everyone wins- all proceeds will be donated to charity.
It is going to take place at the beautiful Bella Collina in San Clemente. Hours are 10-3.  2 sections: K-6th, and 7-12th. Besides the tournament awards for the winners, every participant will receive a small prize, and in addition, there will gift certificates.  In addition, after the tournament, there will be an optional free lecture with Ms. D. Durham- the owner of Educational Chess.

To participate and register, please visit the Educational Chess tournaments page.  Reserve your seat today. Hope to see you there!

Chess camp and art camp for kids- Irvine, San Clemente – Orange County, CA

April 24th, 2010

Educational Chess is now accepting registrations for the Da Vinci Chess Camp and Art Camp in Irvine and San Clemente.
This fun and instructional summer camp is for two age groups: kids and teens.

Based on Da Vinci’s techniques, this unique academic camp combines the use of analytical and creative thinking skills which stimulate learning and imagination at all levels.
This summer camp is guranteed to be a fun learning experience and make a lasting impression on the campers.

For information and registration for the  Da Vinci Chess and Art Camp, please visit the Educational Chess chess camp page.

Da Vinci Chess and Art Summer Camp 2010 by Educational Chess

Irvine Chess classes for teens

April 8th, 2010


Educational Chess is announcing two new chess classes for teens in Irvine. One is for beginners and the other is for intermediate teens. 
These classes are only 3 hours each and ideal for busy teens who would like to learn chess and improve their chess strategies.
The beginners’ chess class will cover all the basics of chess.
The intermediate chess class is an overview of all the middle game chess strategies, and even more advanced strategies for those who already know simple middle game strategies. We are also going to cover some sacrifices and explore opening and end-game concepts.
You can learn a lot in just a few hours.

April 17, 2010  Basics of Chess for Teens, 10 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. and
Register here.

April 24, 2010  Middle Game Strategies      10 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.     
Register here.

Format: interactive, group and individual learning.  
Materials: supplied for use in class free of charge

Hope to see you there.        

Chess lessons-winter special for private chess lessons

December 5th, 2009


This winter I am offering a special for the private lessons packages. There is a 15% discount and it is available for a limited time. For Orange County and Los Angeles County residents. Makes a great Christmas gift.
Please visit Educational Chess for contact information.
Educational Chess private lessons ad

Chess in schools- song and a dance or real chess education?

November 29th, 2009

Sometimes I walk into schools to introduce my chess program to school officials. I know  that I have a very good program. I have worked hard to create it, maintain it, and am constantly improving it. I am also aware of the other chess organizations out there and what they have to offer, so I am confident about the quality of my chess program.  Some copy my ideas and my lesson plans. I guess I should feel flattered by that- imitation is a form of flattery, they say. And although it is a bit challenging to deal with that, I do have lots of new ideas that I implement into the Educational Chess program- so a little competition pushes me to become even more creative and improve my program regularly.

Many schools now offer a chess program to their students. Some are O.K.- taught by experienced chess teachers with solid chess tournament experience,  some are taught by big organizations who hire college students (with mediocre results) , and some are taught by parents, teachers or individuals with very little knowledge of chess who mostly baby-sit their students (with poor results).

So, I am confident that I have a really good program. However, it is not so easy to translate that to the school administrations-many of the schools now have a chess program, so competition is much more intense for new schools.

And I am amazed how some schools officials seem to not understand the difference in quality of programs- most don’t know chess.  I was told by one school official a while ago that they like their chess organization because “they are friendly”. One other told me that their students have some acting in their chess class. Then, I hear  there are song and dances, too.
And I thought that was fine, but when I asked them about what their students learned, they all shrugged their shoulders. When I told them that a song and a dance is great, but learning and improving at chess should be the main goal, they had no answer.  I even offered to teach some of the school officials for free- but they had no interest in that.
So, I am noticing that there are chess programs out there with a song and a dance- and not much substance.

Here is my advice to those in charge- you need to be able to figure out the better chess programs from the mediocre ones. How can you do that? First, get involved- learn chess, and go beyond the basics. That is pretty much what most of the organizations out there offer- except they pepper it with a song and a dance. My students say many of their former chess teachers repeat the same lessons over and over again, and it only covers the basics. Really, we can do much better than that. And you owe it to your students to make sure that they keep learning and that they stay mentally stimulated.

Here are some factors school officials should consider when choosing a good chess program:

-instructor teaching experience and tournament experience (at least 2 years for teaching and about 4 years of serious rated tournament play)

– instructor knowledge (the higher the chess rating, the better. My recommendation- 1,800 and above.)

– a detailed program . Ask for details, learn what those terms mean.

-what level is the program for? Most are just basic, with no inclination to help students reach their potential.  However, a lot of kids now ask to learn more.

-how involved is the teacher in making sure all students learn? In other words, does the teacher really care about the children’s progress?

-is there new material offered on a regular basis?

And you need to verify this information. A song and a dance are nice, but a good chess education is mind power and a recipe for success. So, school officials- learn chess, learn how to choose a good chess program. Get out there, get involved today!

So, figure it out- do you want quality chess education? Then, you have to do your part and ensure that your school’s children benefit from a quality chess program.  In my opinion- you owe that to your students.

Crossword puzzle- interactive and fun chess learning!

September 29th, 2009

Hello, chess enthusiasts

I have created a chess crossword puzzle- a fun way to learn about chess in an interactive way. It is about basics, a bit of middle-game terminology, and about pawn structures. I hope you enjoy it, and if you have any suggestions about other featurs that you would like to see on the Educational Chess site, please let me know- I will do my best to make it happen.  Here is the link to the interactive chess crossword puzzle:

Sportsmanship in chess- ancient tradition or not?

September 8th, 2009

Hello, everyone!

 As usual, I have had a busy schedule. But while I keep adding more pages and content, I spoke with some parents regarding good sportsmanship in chess. It has always been a very important topic to me, and to be honest, now it seems to be more of a lost tradition.  And this is why I wrote an article about chess sportsmanship- based on my personal experiences and philosophy, which you can view here.
Enjoy and drop me a note if you have any questions or comments.

Chess art store opening and online chess lessons now offered at Educational Chess

August 13th, 2009

Hello, chess enthusiasts!

Finally, a new chance to blog and let you know about my newest additions. One is the online chess lessons- which are now offered at Educational Chess. For more information, please check the online chess lessons page: . Prices are very reasonable, and you can do the lessons from the comfort of your home. Contact Educational Chess for information or to sign up at:

The other addition is the chess store, which has chess art available on t shirts, cups, mugs, hats, calendars that you can purchase. The chess art is my creation, and I am planning on adding more designs, as soon as I have some extra time- I love art. Here is the chess store link: 

Chess king

Also, I re-organized the pages and added more, and improved the navigation.  Keeping the site organized is a challenge, but it is fun to add more content- there is a lot I have to share with you.  And more chess information is coming up- and I hope that will help you improve your chess strategy.

So, you can probably guess that there will be more additions in the near future. Have fun learning chess, playing chess, doing some art, browsing. And while you are there, don’t forget to sign up for the Educational Chess Newsletter so you can find out about the new updates and promotions that will be offered.

Take care for now,