Newsletter #06

Post date: Nov 21, 2017 4:28:56 AM

K-4 Chess Match with Cedar Rapids Coolidge Elementary (11/28)

We have a fun opportunity for our K-4 chess players, Tuesday, November 28, to play the ch so far and could really use your participation. The Coolidge Chess Club has 25 players, so we are a bit short at the moment. We will meet at Prairie Creek after class dismissal (just like Mondays) and take a bus to Coolidge Elementary. Parents will need to provide permission to participate by completing the online sign-up sheet.

We will still have a regular chess club on Monday. If however, two days of chess is one day too much, then please choose to join us in our Tuesday match at Coolidge.


I have handed out most of the t-shirts. I will continue to bring them to chess club until they are all picked up. For those that did not get an order, I have a few extras from past years and will happily offer them to those who missed the order this year.

Today’s Lesson

Our lesson for both groups was about pawns. Pawns move so differently than other pieces: they can’t move backwards, they capture differently (diagonal) than their regular move (forward), and they can promote to a queen (knight, rook, or bishop) when they reach the other side of the board. We discussed the strengths and weaknesses of pawns by introducing the concept of pawn chains, doubled pawns, and backward pawns. Finally we concluded with some puzzles with the theme of “pawn promotion” (attached).

Prairie Fall Classic Chess Tournament

We had a fabulous turn out at the chess tournament Saturday. Forty-two Prairie chess players participated among a field of 107 students from Des Moines, Ames, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, and Marion. We even have two high school seniors obtain their US Chess Tournament Director Certification and helped direct the event. You can find the US Chess Rating report online (click here) or going to the tournament webpage: The next Prairie tournament is January 27, 2018.