We have many of our students competing on sports teams, but one of our Fourth Grade students competes on a different sort of team – chess! While athletic competitions are usually filled with enthusiastic cheering from fellow students and parents, chess competitions are very quiet, with competitors deep in thought as they analyze strategies and plan their moves.
PHS Fourth Grader Brian Macdonald began entering chess competitions way back in Kindergarten, improving his skills while playing chess with his father. In First Grade here at PHS, Brian started with our afterschool “Think Chess for Kids” program, which we offer once each week in the fall and spring. Brian just loves this complicated game, and he was chosen by Michael Angelo, of “Think Chess for Kids,” to compete with four students from other local schools on a team at the Super States Chess Championship. Held at the Hyatt Regency Valencia on March 24, Brian’s team placed fifth out of 15 teams in its division from all over California.
Of particular interest, Brian won three of his five matches and also beat a player of significantly higher rating. Each player has a personal proficiency rating, and Brian’s is currently 333. However at Valencia, he beat a 700-ranked player, which is quite an accomplishment! The future looks bright for our young chess aficionado!