Archive for the ‘chess’ Category

So I was just playing a game of #chess and then this happened! 29

June 17, 2019

Not too difficult but a very realistic test for game winning combinations. Black to move and mate in 5.

Black to move and mate in 5.

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Summer Chess Camps Return to Fremont

June 10, 2019

Summer Chess Programs in Fremont

Sign up for any 1 week camp for ONLY $200 and your child will also receive:

** A 1 year gold membership to ChessKid.com (a $50 value)

** A copy of Learn Chess the Right Way by Susan Polgar (a $20 value)

** And two online private lessons with Chris Torres (an $80 value) at no extra charge.
That’s an additional $150 worth of educational chess products for no extra charge!

Visit www.fremontchess.com to register online

 

Each weekly chess camp is custom designed to give your child:

* The Valuable tools and skills needed to excel as a chess player.

* An extraordinary chess camp experience with a top-tier chess instructor.

* The confidence and motivation necessary to surpass their chess goals and fast track improvement.

In addition, as part of the camp experience, every child will receive a complimentary copy of Susan Polgar’s book “Learning Chess the Right Way” (a $20 value) as well as a gold membership to ChessKid.com (valued at $50.) In addition, we will also offer two free online lessons (valued at $40/hour) to every registered camp attendee in order to follow up with each child individually and ensure that they are still on track for rapid chess improvement.

For nearly a quarter century, Chris Torres has been teaming up with the biggest names in chess and education to bring top-tier chess instruction to the Bay Area at an incredible value. His meticulous approach has paved the way for the success of his students regardless of their entry skill level. A true leader in California chess, Chris Torres creates unique a curriculum perfectly suited for each and every class he teaches.

View his resume here: https://chessmusings.wordpress.com

 

Program Dates Times Address
P1 $200 Jun 17-21 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P2 $190 Jun 24-28 1:00-4:00 Warm Springs Community Park @ Crafts Room 47300 Fernald St, Fremont, CA
P3 $200 Jul 8-12 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P4 $200 Jul 15-17 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P5 $190 Jul 22-26 8:30-11:30 Teen Center @ Office 39770 Paseo Padre Pkwy, Fremont, CA
P6 $200 Jul 29- Aug 2 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P7 $200 Aug 5-9 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P8 $200 Aug 12-16 1:00-4:00 36496 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA
P9 $190 Aug 19-23 9:00-12:00 Warm Springs Community Park @ Crafts Room 47300 Fernald St, Fremont, CA

Please contact Chris Torres at chesslessons@aol.com if you have any questions. Checks should be made payable to the TCAMA 16691 Colonial Trail, Lathrop, CA, 95330, OR visit http://www.fremontchess.com/ to register online.

 

So I was just playing a game of #chess and then this happened! 28

June 8, 2019

Black to move and mate in 5.

Black to move and mate in 5.

Chris Torres Raises the Bar for Fremont Summer Chess Camps in 19 | Fremont, CA Patch

June 7, 2019

Chris Torres Raises the Bar for Fremont Summer Chess Camps in 19 | Fremont, CA Patch

Get $150 worth of free chess extras from FremontChess.com when you sign your child up for a weeklong camp for only $200!

— Read on www.google.com/amp/s/patch.com/california/fremont/amp/28114988/chris-torres-raises-bar-fremont-summer-chess-camps-201

Chess Chat: Q&A with Karen Thurm Safran, Author of Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It

May 25, 2019

Many people know you as the powerful marketing force behind some amazing companies and products. Authoring a parenting book seems to be an interesting career pivot for you. What motivated you to become an author?

Thanks for including me on your blog… and for the compliment. Wow, we’ve known each other for nearly twenty years since my son started chess in elementary school. Time sure flies by quickly! 

Writing a book is definitely a career shift from managing marketing teams, working in a fast-paced high-tech environment, and driving revenue for companies. While it seems like a random career move, I decided to fulfill a childhood dream of writing a book and combine it with my love of parenting. 

Welcome, Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It, an entertaining book showing playful ways to stop struggling with your child and start having more fun. Now kids will listen and cooperate-willingly! I’m excited because already it’s been a #1 New Release in 7 Amazon categories.

How is your book different from other parenting book?

While I love reading parenting books, my book is very different. First, Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It entertains as well as inspires. The “how to” lessons are shown through entertaining, light-hearted stories. People say that reading my book is like sitting with a friend over coffee. Second, many parenting books focus on babies, toddlers, or teens. I focus primarily on elementary school-age kids (as well as toddlers). There aren’t many books for this demographic. Lastly, parents don’t have time. My gosh, there’s barely enough time in the day to tackle parts of the formidable To-Do list, nevermind read a book. So, I organized my book into short, easy to read chapters that stand-alone. Now whenever parents have a spare moment, they can easily flip to a chapter on a specific parenting challenge. My goal is to have these fictional, whimsical stories spark the reader’s own playfulness. It’s very touching hearing how stories inspire people’s own creativity for handling frustrating parenting situations.

Why did you choose to write a parenting book and specifically, Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It? 

Parenting is incredibly rewarding, but it’s also stressful. Even the best kids fuss, don’t listen, and misbehave. With the never-ending power struggles, parenting can be overwhelming. My parents had a trick. They embraced a “can do!” spirit, used their imagination, and created games to turn around frustrating moments. It was like magic! Goodbye nagging and yelling. Life became more enjoyable for our entire family.

When I became a mom, I experienced first-hand the benefits of this playful attitude and positive parenting style. I wrote Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It to help other families because this playful approach helped me as a stressed-out single parent. By creating games to deal with frustrating moments, you make parenting more fun, you empower your children, and you spend quality time connecting with your family.

This playful approach is in contrast to that stereotypically serious Silicon Valley parenting style. What are the greatest advantages of making a game out of parenting for families that live in such a competitive environment?

I know, parenting playfully seems counterintuitive, especially when your kids aren’t cooperating and you’re about to scream. Being playful is the last thing you want to do! Luckily, being playful doesn’t have to be hard, You can adopt a fun attitude in less than a minute as shown in my blog, “How to be a Fun Mom (Like Mary Poppins Not “Monster Mom”). I also wrote a blog outlining 46 Tips on How To Be a Playful, Positive Parent. While it may seem like another task to conquer, being positive and playful reduces your stress… and YOUR child’s stress. You’ll spend more quality time connecting with your family, which makes parenting more fun and empowers your child.

Whether or not you live in a competitive area like Silicon Valley, adopting this playful approach has many benefits.

  • Entertains kids when they’re bored and misbehaving.
  • Calms children when they’re upset and melting down.
  • Gets kids to help around the house with chores.
  • Teaches real-life skills like organizing school work, writing papers, and project planning to meet deadlines.

Being a Chess Mom/Dad presents unique challenges for parenting. Could you describe some of these challenges and how you handled them?

The biggest challenge was making time to attend chess tournaments. These are so important and part of the chess experience, so I made sure that my son participated in as many as possible. We even flew to several national events. If you’re going to encourage your child to play chess, realize from the get-go that this is a time commitment. However, there’s plenty of “down” time during each chess round. I recommend bringing work to keep you busy. Most importantly, have a positive, supportive attitude and consider this as time to sit and catch up on whatever.

I learned at the first national tournament, that we were there for one reason: chess. During the first break, I dragged us to the local aquarium and had plans to squeeze in fun activities throughout the weekend. Woo-hoo, we’d get to explore a new city! I quickly realized that competing is exhausting, so my ten-year old son needed to simply rest in the hotel room. These national chess tournament trips are now highlights because they provided special, connecting opportunities that also empowered my son.

How did your son choose and benefit from chess?

While visiting a relative’s house, our cousin taught my five-year-old son some basic chess. Boom! That was the catalyst. This passion continued and grew since the elementary school offered chess (which is where we met Chris!). At seven, he participated in his first tournament, second tournament, and so forth, all the way through high school. Now in his early twenties, he continues playing chess online.

Chess is VERY beneficial! It teaches patience, emphasizes discipline, develops problem-solving skills, trains a logical mind, improves memory, builds confidence, and provides a life-long hobby. I’m impressed how my son can focus and tune out any noise. He’s also great at math, was a stats major, and is now an actuary. Chess gave him an opportunity to be a leader when he started a chess club in high school. But the most important benefit is that chess provided countless hours of fun!

Finally, how can all the chess parents who read this blog obtain a copy of your book? 

They can visit my “Parenting—Let’s Make a Game of It” website and also visit Amazon directly.

Thanks for all of your wonderful work inspiring students in chess! And thanks for interviewing me for your Chess Chat blog.

Playing Blindfold Chess

May 19, 2019

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a photographic memory to be proficient at blindfold chess. The basic visualization required is really not all that different from the kind of mental exercise chess players commonly experience while calculating long endgame variations. In fact, if you’ve ever had a vivid chess dream while sleeping (quite common among my friends), you have already played blindfold chess!

Playing a chess game blindfolded (or at least facing opposite the chess board) against a class of young chess players is a sure fire way to raise the excitement level of the classroom or camp. Generally, I save such exhibitions for midway through a long camp or series of difficult lessons to add a little spice to the curriculum. In addition to adding energy to the room, a blindfold chess performance might just inspire a student to pick up the skill for his/herself which will greatly benefit their chess in the long run.

Below is my best ever such game played during the Fremont Summer Chess Camp in 2016. Enjoy…

 

[Event “Blindfold Game”]
[Site “Fremont, California (USA)”]
[Date “2016.7.13”]
[Round “”]
[White “Chris Torres”]
[Black “Intermediate Students”]
[Result “1-0”]
[Eco “C50”]
[Annotator “Chris Torres”]
[Source “”]

{[ ITALIAN GAME & HUNGARIAN def.,C50] [ ITALIAN GAME & HUNGARIAN def.,C50]}
1.e4 {I practice what I preach: “Open With a Center Pawn.”} e5
2.Nf3 {Knights Before Bishops.} Nc6 3.Bc4 {For a blindfold game, I chose my most comfortable structure (The Italian.)}
Qe7 {Perhaps my opponents were trying to confuse me by choosing the rare Qe7 sideline.}
4.Nc3 Nd4 {
My students have already broken two opening rules. They brought their queen out
early and now they have moved the same piece twice. Normally punishing these
mistakes wouldn’t be too difficult. But playing foreign positions with no view of the board is stressful.}
( 4…Nf6 5.Ng5 d5 6.exd5 Na5 7.d6 cxd6 8.Bxf7+ Kd8 9.Bb3 Nxb3
10.axb3 d5 11.O-O h6 12.Nf3 Bg4 13.d3 a6 14.Re1 Rc8 15.Bf4 Nd7
16.h3 Bh5 17.g4 Bf7 18.Nxe5 Nxe5 19.Bxe5 Qh4 20.Qf3 Bg8 21.Qxf8+
{1-0, Zhotev Jasen (BUL) 2086 – Ivanov Oleg (RUS) 2425 , Sofia 8/ 8/2009 It “Hemus Open” (3)}
) 5.Nd5 {In order to punish mistakes you must attack. Here, I know that their queen must
retreat to d8 in order to stop the knight from capturing on c7 with a fork.}
Qc5 {?!} {Honestly, I did not anticipate this move at all and was forced to repeat all the moves to myself outloud and calculate.}
6.Nxe5 {!} {“Whenever you’re aggressive, you’re at the edge of mistakes.”-Mario Andretti}
d6 {I hear excited chatter from my students about “winning a piece.”}
7.b4 {!} {Even when blindfolded, it’s hard to miss this obvious threat!}
Nxc2+ {Black had no choice that did not involve losing a piece or more.}
8.Qxc2 {I gain a knight without losing the initiative.} Qd4 {The queen may look threatening, but, really, she is all alone against an army.}
9.Bb5+ {At this point I couldn’t quite see the forced mate in 4 but this check seemed very promising.}
c6 10.Bxc6+ {!} {Looks impressive but really it is just the result of analyzing checks, captures and threats.}
bxc6 11.Qxc6+ {Forcing black’s king to d8 and a nice finish.}
Kd8 12.Nxf7# 1-0

So I was just playing a game of #chess and then this happened! 27

May 5, 2019

Probably my favorite finishing mate of the year! My opponent has just captured my rook on f1 with his bishop. White to move and mate in 2. (Not too hard to spot but very satisfying play!)

White to move and mate in two.

2019 Lathrop Mayor’s Cup Chess Tournament

May 1, 2019

Dear Parents,

It is my great pleasure to invite your children to participate in the 2019 Lathrop Mayor’s Cup chess tournament at River Islands Technology Academy. Many of your children enjoy chess and will be excited to compete against other young chess players from around our region.

The date of this tournament is May 11 and round 1 will begin at 9:30am. All participants will play four rounds and Lathrop’s Mayor, Sonny Dhaliwal, will arrive at 2:00pm to hand out awards. Because of a generous donation from the River Islands Development Team and our tournament staff donating their time, there is no cost to register for this exciting event. Additionally, we will be selling lots of tasty treats and pizza slices to raise funds for the Torres Chess and Music Academy’s other projects in the area.

Sincerely,

Chris Torres

President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy

Register online at

www.ChessAndMusic.com

So I was just playing a game of #chess and then this happened! 26

April 29, 2019

White to move and mate in 6.

White to move and mate in 6.

Betcha Can’t Solve This #Chess Puzzle! 45

April 23, 2019

White to move and mate in 3 (Samuel Loyd, 1858).

White to move and mate in 3 (Samuel Loyd, 1858).


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