The Vision:

Chess and Goal Setting

The ability to set, pursue and achieve clear, defined goals is one of the best indicators for future success in life, and one of the best means by which to build character and teach important life skills to children.

By teaching children and youth how to define, set and pursue personal goals, we assist them in growing into creative, curious, independent and tolerant adults, who contribute to society and to the world they live in. The game of chess can offer one of the best grounds for teaching children how to pursue their own life goals, all from a very early age.

The annual program includes setting and pursuing actual non-chess related personal life goals for each participant. It incorporates group collaboration, guided imagery, and creativity building assignments, while focusing on concepts such as teamwork, responsibility and integrity, along with independent thinking, decision making and conflict resolution. Students realize how they are members of the world and part of a community, understanding that the road to achieving any goal runs through adding value to the lives of others. In the program students are exposed to the idea of goal setting in life from an early age, with chess as the means for achieving this purpose.

“After one session it was evident that the “Thinking Different” chess program is about much more than teaching students how to play chess, but also a metaphor for using the strategies taught to conduct a successful and productive life. …teaching methods incorporated hands on, visual and auditory learning styles that highlighted the strengths of each student, encouraging success for all participants. …It is my pleasure to recommend this program to any youth based program interested in expanding their curriculum.”

--Bronwyn Gilchrist, Child and Youth Councellor--
Jerome D. Diamond Adolescent Centre,
Toronto, Canada

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