Chess Classes

Our classes at the Tuscaloosa Public Library can cover up to four class levels. While chess is our primary focus, good sportsmanship and self-discipline are by-products of our teaching approach. All ages welcome. Lessons are free.

1) Beginners
Learn basic chess moves and rules required to play a game. Learn about the values of the various pieces. Understand check, checkmate, stalemate and castling. Minimum requirements: age 5; be able to count; know alphabet.
2) Novice
Learn the basics about opening principles, tactics, and endgames. Demonstrate some proficiency. Prepare for your first tournament (or just get good enough to occasionally beat your dad or chess-playing friends). This level is also appropriate for players with some experience but who have had no formal training and may be unfamiliar with some chess terminology.
3) Intermediate
Gain an understanding of chess strategy, more advanced tactics, major openings, and intermediate level endgame play. Scholastic players at this level are generally interested in tournament play and are willing to work to gain the skills they need to be competitive.
4) Advanced
Gain deeper understanding of strategy, positional play. Improve calculation. Analyze positions. Employ proper chess thinking. This class is for the serious, experienced chess player with prior chess training. Most students will have USCF ratings of 1000 or higher.
Intermediate and Advanced sections are appropriate for students at school chess programs who are ready for more advanced chess training and/or better chess competition than their school programs can provide.

While are students are predominately in grades k-6, classes our open to all ages. Parents, particularly of students taking beginning courses, are encouraged to participate.

Classes are typically 75 minutes with the time split evenly between instruction and game play.

We encourage supplemental study of chess outside of class using  lessons. We also draw on training material from Learning Chess, The Chess School, Chess Kid, and Championship Chess.

Objectives and Vocabulary Taught at Each Class Level

Topics and Proficiency Level Objectives (by Section)