Posts Tagged ‘Kindergarten chess’

The Future of Chess has Arrived at River Islands Technology Academy in Lathrop, California

February 24, 2014

The Torres Chess and Music Academy brings chess instruction to the twenty-first century classroom.

Kindergarteners at River Islands Technology Academy  are turning to the iPad to improve their cognitive function or as they like to say, “Play chess.”

Kindergarteners at River Islands Technology Academy are turning to the iPad to improve their cognitive function or as they like to say, “Play chess.”

Parents in Lathrop, California are growing accustomed to seeing their kindergartener’s eyes glued to the screen of an iPad. Often times their child isn’t watching a movie or playing a kid’s game. Instead, kindergarteners around town are turning to the iPad to improve their cognitive function or as they like to say, “Play chess.” Since playing chess also improves academic performance, these lucky parents couldn’t be happier.

Currently, Chris Torres, the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy, is teaching nearly sixty kindergarteners at River Islands Technology Academy the game of chess using a combination of the traditional methods he has used to train several National Champions as well as high tech devices that allow his students to grasp concepts at a much faster pace. The results of his new method have astounded the parents of his kindergartener students as well as captured the attention of chess instructors worldwide.

Of course, fundamentally changing the way chess is taught to children took years of planning and many partnerships. The first step for Chris Torres was finding a suitable school where children were already exposed to technology in the classroom on a daily basis. An obvious choice was River Islands Technology Academy in Lathrop, California. Founded in the fall of 2013, River Islands Technology Academy is the result of Central Valley visionary Susan Dell’Osso’s desire to create a state of the art technology academy in her home town. Soon after River Islands Technology Academy opened its doors for the first time, Chris Torres approached Principal Brenda Scholl with his plan to bring chess into her classrooms. Brenda became first principal in San Joaquin County to accept Chris’ offer for an after-school chess club. Brenda Scholl also Ok’d a chess period to be a part of every kindergartener’s Friday class schedule. Around the same time, the Torres Chess and Music Academy received a generous donation from Palantir Technologies co-founder Joe Lonsdale that made it possible to bring a first rate chess education to schools in San Joaquin County without any funding from the cash strapped schools or parents. Chris Torres attributes the early success of the chess club to forming a committed team of adults who want to help children in California gain a world class education.

“The state-of-the-art chess program at River Islands Technology Academy is the result of teamwork by parents, partnerships with educators and collaboration with generous patrons. Without this framework, establishing any chess club would be difficult and especially so for a club which aspires to be the leading edge of chess education in the twenty-first century.”-Chris Torres

This is not Chris’s first attempt at teaching chess. Through the Torres Chess and Music Academy, Chris Torres has brought world class instruction to California’s most talented young chess minds. Some of his accomplishments included running a “Chess Study” with the Kern County Superintendent of the Schools and U.C. Berkeley from 2006-2008. In addition to the study, Chris was able to educate the children in Kern County’s migrant farm worker community in chess and even coach them to prestigious Southern California regional chess titles. In the Bay Area, Chris was able to instruct several individual National Chess Champions as well as coach for the Mission San Jose Elementary School chess team, which in 2009 and 2013 took first place at the USCF Super Nationals Chess Championship.

Chris Torres hopes that the River Islands Technology Academy’s chess club will not only raise the bar for how chess is taught in schools but also serve as a model that other prospective chess educators can follow. To this end, Chris Torres regularly advises parents and teachers on the necessary steps to establishing a successful school chess program. In addition to these free consultations, Chris Torres also uses the Torres Chess and Music Academy as a vehicle to bring chess to thousands of children in Northern California.

 http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/02/prweb11609000.htm

Milind Maiti was Undefeated at the National Chess Championship

May 14, 2011
Torres Chess & Music Academy, Inc. 16691 Colonial Trail

Lathrop, CA  95330

Phone (661) 699-8348

Chesslessons@aol.com

Press Release

Contact: Chris Torres

Phone: (661) 699-8348

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 13, 2011

Kindergartener Milind Maiti Was Undefeated at the NATIONAL CHESS CHAMPIONship

Cupertino, CA, May 6-8, 2011: Cupertino five year old Milind Maiti was unbeatable at the 2011 United States Chess Federation National Elementary Chess Championships held in Dallas, Texas on May 6-8. Despite competing in a section with 294 of the best young chess players in the country, Milind won six games and had one draw which was good enough for a third place finish.  

   Milind Maiti’s path to becoming the top kindergarten chess player began at the age of four when his parent’s noticed his talents at solving jigsaw puzzles. A couple months later Milind’s interest moved towards building with Legos.  It was at this point that Milind’s father Chandan slowly introduced him to the game of chess which he enjoyed immediately.  For one so young, Milind’s desire to improve was immense. His parents began signing him up for tournaments very regularly. When he entered school, Milind started attending chess classes run by the Torres Chess and Music Academy. In spite of being a kindergartener, Milind quickly was promoted to the “advanced” class at the Collins Elementary School Chess Team. It was in this Class that Milind met chess coach Chris Torres, president of the Torres Chess & Music Academy. Chris has taught several national chess champions and he immediately recognized Milind Maiti’s remarkable talent and began training Milind to use tactics with greater effect.

In December of 2010, Milind Maiti traveled to Stockton for the Calchess Grade-level Championship. Milind won all his games easily and became the Kindergarten State Chess Champion. Over the next several months, Milind’s chess continued to improve at an incredible rate. In the first week of April, Milind Maiti competed in the Calchess Scholastic State Championships Kindergarten division, held in Santa Clara. During this tournament, Milind once again achieved a perfect score. For his remarkable performance, Milind Maiti became a State Chess Champion for a second time.

   According to his coach Chris Torres, Milind is the only kindergartener in California history to be undefeated at the State Grade Level Chess Championship, the State K-3 Chess Championship and the National Chess Championship in the same school year. Chris attributes Milind’s successes to his remarkable talent, love for the game, incredible work ethic and to the support that his parents Chandan and Smitha Maiti  provide.           

Chris Torres had other Torres Chess & Music Academy students to make him proud in the K-1 section. Chris’ other students included Ben Rood, from Walnut Creek, who tied for first in the individual competition. Five members of the Mission San Jose Elementary School team, Rishith Susarla, Chenyi Zhao, Soorya Kuppam, Jeffrey Liu, and Amulya Harish also placed third in the school competition.

-End-

Mission San Jose Elementary Takes Chess to a New Level

May 10, 2011

Mission San Jose Elementary School in Fremont, California has, for decades, fielded the most successful chess teams the Golden State has ever produced. Year after year, the relatively small public school’s chess club trains hundreds of students in the art of aggressive chess play. Those who excel at the club are invited to participate in the more exclusive Monday night team meetings. There, as he has done since the 1980’s, Head Coach Joe Lonsdale uses his demo board to show practical examples of masterful chess games played by the great masters of the 19’th century as well as recent gems played by the young Mission San Jose Elementary chess players.  After the lesson, students are paired into a stepladder tournament and compete using clocks while notating their moves. Every week, almost every game played gets analysed by Joe Lonsdale, Richard Shorman, Chris Torres or a graduate of the chess team. Joe’s labor of love has created a chess team that has an unrivaled success rate at major chess tournaments and a team jersey that can barely fit all the state chess titles the school has won.

    Mission San Jose Elementary School has also fares well at the national level despite the fact that the USCF National Elementary Chess Championships are rarely held on the west coast. In 2009, Mission San Jose Elementary School became the first school from California to ever win the National Elementary Chess Champion Title. The following year, the Mission San Jose Elementary School team placed second in the K-1 Championship Section, tied for fourth place in the K-3 Championship Section, finished third in the K-5 Championship Section and placed 9th in the K-6 Championship section.  In 2011, we even did better! Mission San Jose Elementary School placed second in the k-6 Championship Section, fourth in the k-5 Championship Section, fourth in the k-3 Championship Section  and third in the k-1 Championship section. According to a long bearded USCF representative I road back to the airport with, this is the best overall achievement of any school in the history of the USCF National Elementary Chess Championships.

   Of course, as hard as us coaches work, it is the players who deserve the credit and recognition. Sixth grader Arman Kalyanpur was our team leader scoring an impressive 5.5/7. Fifth Grader Alvin Kong achieved a score of 4.5/7. Sixth Grader Erik Wong also scored well with 4/7. Our fourth member of the k-6 Championship Section was Alex Yin who completed the tournament with 3.5/7.

   Our k-5 team was led by fourth grader Amit Sant with a score of 5/7. Fifth graders Steven Li and Shalin Shah who both finished with an impressive 4.5/7. Another fifth grader, Eric Zhu, managed to score 4/7.  Fifth Grader Sayan Das scored 3.5/7.   

   Our k-3 team was led by second grader John Andrew Chan who finished with 5/7. Next came second grader Mihir Bhuptani and third grader Ojas Arun who both scored 4/7.  Second grader Alvin Zhang  had a strong showing with 3.5/7. Second Grader Luke Zhao, who had the flu, finished with 3/7.  Edward Liu, who attended his first Nationals,  finished with 2.5/7.

   The MSJE k-1 team’s top scorer was kindergartener Rishith Susarla with and impressive 5/7. Next came first graders Chenyi Zhao and Soorya Kuppam with a score of 4.5/7. First Grader Jeffrey Liu managed to score 4/7. The quickly improving Kindergartener Amulya Harish finished with 2.5/7.

  And to the MSJE Chess Team…

 It was a real pleasure to watch all of you achieve such great success in the most prestigious tournament of the year. As your chess coach, I am very grateful to have shared so many memorable moments with you during the 2010-2011 school years. Congratulations!

Maiti is Unbeatable at the Nationals

May 8, 2011

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California Kindergartener Milind Maiti scored 6.5/7 in the k-1 section of the 2011 USCF National Elementary Chess Championships in Dallas, Texas. Milind finished higher than any other kindergartener in the tournament and received a third place trophy that stands taller than he does. I was not surprised by Milind’s result because I have witnessed his tactical maturity on Tuesdays at the Collins Elementary School chess team. In fact, in thirteen years of teaching chess, I have never seen another kindergartener with such great potential.

California’s Top Chess Children Make a Splash at the 2011 USCF National Elementary Chess Championship

May 7, 2011

The United States Chess Federation ran a very nice article featuring many of the top kindergarten and first graders who are competing in the 2011 National Elementary Chess Championships in Dallas, Texas. As is always the case, California is very well represented by several super talented chess kids. Below is an exerpt from the article by Kele Perkins:

On paper, the ratings favorite is Ben Rood of California. A student at the Chris Torres Chess and Music Academy, Rood has shown tremendous improvement in the last several weeks. His recent victories over 2nd grade national co-champion Josiah Paul Stearman and a win against an ‘A’ player show that Rood is in great form. Torres believes young Ben is “destined to become a national champion,” and his play at the Northern California state championships gives some credence to his teacher’s prediction. Another Torres student, Chenyi Zhao, had a recent ratings slip, but is still a force to be reckoned with. A third, Milind Maiti, is among the country’s top kindergarteners.

There is still time to sign up for the Torres Chess and Music Academy’s summer chess camps in California. Please visit www.ChessAndMusic.com for more information.

2011 Calchess Scolastic State Championships: Day 1

April 3, 2011

Three Northern California chess prodigies performed extremely well during the first day of the 2011 Calchess Scholastic State Championships.  Kindergartener Milind Maiti scored a perfect 5/5 and became the 2011 Calchess Kindergarten State Champion. First Grader Chenyi Zhao scored 2.5/3 in the k-3 championship. Ben Rood, another first grader, scored a perfect 3/3 on day one in the same section. I am extremely proud to have spent time training all three of these super talents.
   For more information on Milind Maiti, Chenyi Zhao and Ben Rood please see visit “On the Eve of Greatness.”


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