Chess Club at the Middle School
The latest craze sweeping through the 7th and 8th graders at Syracuse Middle School is chess! That’s right. Our kids are playing chess – by choice! 7th grader Spencer Noerrlinger came to Principal Farley with a request to start up a chess club and now 14-plus 7th and 8th graders are playing chess on a regular basis. The club meets four days a week before school in the gym to play and they are currently holding a tournament. These students are not only playing by using chess boards, but also playing online with each other at chess.com.
According to the US Chess Federation, “Evidence shows that player's benefits include improvement in literary, math, critical thinking and life skills—including sustained focus, conflict resolution, respect, and more.”
Question and answer with Spencer
How did you come up with the idea to start a chess club? “Chess has become super popular on TikTok and other forms of social media. I also noticed how many of my friends were starting to play. My mom thought it was a really cool idea to start a club and get other kids playing chess also.
Why do you like to play chess? “I saw my dad playing and I wanted to learn.”
What do you hope comes from creating a chess club? “I just want people to have fun. Playing chess helps me feel comfortable and I hope it helps them too.