about the program

Chess is a challenging but fun game to learn and just perfect for Hamilton students grades 2-8. Whether through chess club at lunch a few times each week, or with after-school chess, or by participating on our competitive Chess Team, chess teaches critical thinking, determination and grit, as well as good sportsmanship and a sense of fair play.  Many of our players are developing into strong competitors, but no experience is necessary to play club chess. All we ask is to bring a good attitude, be open to learning, and have fun! Chess at Hamilton is offered free of charges.


With the addition of Carla Heredia (Woman Grand Master) as our chess coach this year, we have expanded the opportunities to play chess at Hamilton. A full chess schedule is provided below, but these are some of the highlights of the program:


Lunchtime Chess Club:  Open to grades 2-8 we often pack the chess room in C-3 with eager students of chess. Strong chess will take time, but fun chess starts right away. Be sure to encourage your student to check it out!


After-school Chess:  Carla offers chess lessons and an opportunity to play after school every day of the week. Monday features Girls Chess, Tuesdays and Fridays are Chess Team practice days, Wednesday is a chance to play after early dismissal, and Thursdays are for Junior Chess Team development (grades 3-5). Carla even opens the chess room for Saturdays from 10-12pm to teach family chess, a chance for you to learn the game with your student, and to then play chess at home!


Competitive Chess Team: We have traveled with our team to Berkeley and hosted our own tournament at Hamilton this year, bringing home trophies each time. Our team is growing and excited about the opportunity to play competitive chess throughout the year. As we build strength and experience, we will begin a rigorous schedule to include travel to State and Regional Tournaments. Competitive chess is very rewarding, but quite demanding of our students. Competition requires chess players to understand the game, remain calm under pressure, and to be open to growth and the learning experience, win, lose or draw.