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Seventy learners from five Diepsloot primary schools pitted their chess skills against each other in the annual Tsogo Sun Moves for Life chess tournament in Diepsloot this month. The Tsogo Sun Moves for Life programme is sponsored by Montecasino and has been operating in Diepsloot for three years, accommodating a total of 3 791 children.
The participating schools in the tournament were Paradise Bend Primary, Muzomuhle Primary, Diepsloot 4 Primary, Reshomile Primary, and Musengavhadzimu Primary, which was the winning school with their learners having achieved the highest score per average. It was a Swiss tournament, which meant the player with the most points won his or her category, with a 60-minute time control per game. The categories were Under 9, 11, 13, and 15.
“It was an excellent opportunity for the children to have a fun day out, and to reap the fruits of their hard work,” says Shanda Paine, Tsogo Sun Group CSI Manager. “They went home having gained a lot of experience, learned new chess rules, practiced good sportsmanship, improved their powers of concentration, and learned how to be polite to their opponents, patience and good behaviour, among other skills. It was a great opportunity for them to interact with other children from neighbouring schools and to make new friends.”
Paine says these Tsogo Sun Moves for Life chess tournaments for participating schools also create the platform for the learners to play in a rated tournament, which increases the number of tournaments that they have played throughout the year – and which might allow some of them to represent their region, while improving their competitive chess skills.
The aim of the Tsogo Sun Moves for Life programme is to use chess as a tool for education which helps improve children’s mathematics, science and problem-solving skills. “The idea is to improve the cognitive and analytical abilities of youngsters by exposing them to the mental discipline provided by the game of chess,” says Paine. “The programme intentionally links chess principles to life skills, mathematics, science and language – and it’s working towards impacting the improvement of the educational performance of as many children as possible, by unlocking their full mental and social capability.”
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