Boy Scout Archives: Chess Merit Badge
Chess is a game which requires the player to focus, analyze, and think ahead.
Chess Merit Badge Requirements
- Discuss with your merit badge counselor the history of the game of chess. Explain why it is considered a game of planning and strategy.
- Discuss with your merit badge counselor the following:
- The benefits of playing chess, including developing critical thinking skills, concentration skills, and decision-making skills, and how these skills can help you in other areas of your life
- Sportsmanship and chess etiquette
- Demonstrate to your counselor that you know each of the following. Then, using Scouting’s Teaching EDGE, teach the following to a Scout who does not know how to play chess:
- The name of each chess piece
- How to set up a chessboard
- How each chess piece moves, including castling and en passant captures
- Do the following:
- Demonstrate scorekeeping using the algebraic system of chess notation.
- Discuss the differences between the opening, the middle game, and the endgame.
- Explain four opening principles.
- Explain the four rules for castling.
- On a chessboard, demonstrate a “scholar’s mate” and a “fool’s mate.”
- Demonstrate on a chessboard four ways a chess game can end in a draw.
- Do the following:
- Explain four of the following elements of chess strategy: exploiting weaknesses, force, king safety, pawn structure, space, tempo, time.
- Explain any five of these chess tactics: clearance sacrifice, decoy, discovered attack, double attack, fork, interposing, overloading, overprotecting, pin, remove the defender, skewer, zwischenzug.
- Set up a chessboard with the white king on e1, the white rooks on a1 and h1, and the black king on e5. With White to move first, demonstrate how to force checkmate on the black king.
- Set up and solve five direct-mate problems provided by your merit badge counselor.
- Do ONE of the following:
- Play at least three games of chess with other Scouts and/or your merit badge counselor. Replay the games from your score sheets and discuss with your counselor how you might have played each game differently.
- Play in a scholastic (youth) chess tournament and use your score sheets from that tournament to replay your games with your merit badge counselor. Discuss with your counselor how you might have played each game differently.
- Organize and run a chess tournament with at least four players, plus you. Have each competitor play at least two games.
Hobbies Troop Program Feature for Boy Scouts The Boy Scout Roundtable Planning Guide suggests a Hobbies feature for December 2011. So this month we'll take a look at this feature in more depth. Some of the ideas in this program feature will also be useful to Cub Scouts and Venturers who are working on hobbies related programs.
Antichess Game Do you feel like you always lose when you play chess? If you are better at getting your own pieces captured than capturing your opponents pieces, then Antichess is the game for you. In Antichess (sometimes called Suicide Chess or Giveaway Chess) the object is to lose all of your pieces.
Chess Terminology Scramble Puzzle Earlier this month, I wrote about basic chess terms. So today I am presenting a word scramble puzzle to reinforce the meanings of some of those terms.
Checkerboard Cake Since I am featuring a chess theme this month, I thought I'd suggest making a checkerboard cake which will look similar to a chess board when sliced as a snack to go along with this theme. One easy way to make a checkerboard cake is with a special checkerboard cake pan.
Atomic Chess Game Do you think regular chess is boring? Then try atomic chess. In atomic chess, pieces don't just capture other pieces, they explode! Both pieces involved in the capture are destroyed along with any in the surrounding area. Sound like fun?
Using Chess Notation Both the Chess pin from the Cub Scout Academics and Sports program and the Chess merit badge for Boy Scouts have requirements related to using chess notation and recording chess games. If you are not familiar with chess notation, this might seem a little daunting, but it really is pretty easy to learn.
Bughouse Chess Game Bughouse (or Bunk House) is a game which helps even the playing field. Basically, there are two teams which simultaneously play chess together. Each player has a direct opponent, but when he captures a piece, he passes it to one of his teammates to play on the board. The key is to have the direct opponents as evenly matched as possible and then to have the teams fairly well balanced in skill level.
Chess Terminology I always go over terminology first when introducing something new to Cub Scouts. This is a good practice for Boy Scouts and Venturers to learn also whenever they are doing skill instruction. So if you are having a chess themed meeting or activity, make sure you are all speaking the same language first. These are some very basic definitions to get you started.
Chess Merit Badge for Boy Scouts The new Chess merit badge for Boy Scouts was just launched a few weeks ago. DS is especially excited about this badge. He has always loved chess.
Chess Theme for Scouts This month I am featuring a Chess theme in honor of the launch of the new Chess merit badge. Chess is a game which requires the player to focus, analyze, and think ahead. So this month I will feature awards related to chess as well as some aids to meet the requirements and some fun ways to help beginners learn the game.
Requirements and Helps for Boy Scout Merit Badges You can learn about sports, crafts, science, trades, business, and future careers as you earn merit badges. There are more than 100 merit badges.
Scouting’s Teaching EDGE (BSA Edge Method) The latest Boy Scout requirements for Tenderfoot and Life ranks require the Scout to use the EDGE method. This is a four step method for teaching a skill. It is sometimes called Scouting’s Teaching EDGE.