Letter from Management Director expressed why she wants to set up the Dandenong Junior Chess Training Centre. “How much is a child’s future success determined by innate intelligence? New research suggests that personality has greater impact on success than IQ as it is highlighted how IQ plays only a minor factor contributing to a person’s success. We generally question what is it that separates the low income earners from the high ones? Or, as the saying goes: if you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich? According to Economist James Heckman, he found that financial success was correlated with conscientiousness; a personality trait marked by diligence, perseverance and self-discipline. Chess is a great game that can teach children how to think strategically and analyse situations as they are put on the spot. The kids start with a foundation revolving around learning the different pieces and then move on to think about the movements that each piece can make. Once the child has mastered that information, they can begin to play modified versions of the game and the possibilities for changing game rules are endless. This allows the child to develop their critical thinking and build important skills like patience. It is fundamental for a parent to support and encourage their child so that they can nurture the child’s love or appreciation for the game and think of chess as a fun yet challenging brain activity. That’s a reason why I wanted my son to stick with chess. He started to learn how to play when he was 4 years old. At the parent teacher interviews in Prep at Wooranna Park Primary School, the teacher asked me what my son’s hobbies are. I told her that my son likes playing chess and she said “at the moment there is not chess at school yet but we will set it up for them to play together”. I am happy that my son was sent to very good primary school in the area. His best achievement was at a State Final Interschool Championships as he acquired an individual trophy, and had been at National Final Championships. The school’s chess team was popular and showed great performance every year at the interschool competitions. Outside of school hours, I took my son to play chess in Box Hill, Glen Waverly, Bentleigh every Sunday afternoon. The tournament started at 1.30 pm and finished at 5.00pm, sometimes 5.30pm. During that time, I had to stay in the car to wait for my son because it took me at least half an hour to drive from home to the club. I think that there are many families in areas of City of Greater Dandenong want their children to join chess club but they haven’t got enough time to drop them off and pick them up at far locations. It is great if we have our own chess centre for kids from 4 years old to 15 years old joining in. It is big chance to get people in our area closer and make our community stronger as well; promote more community participation and activeness. Investing in education and investing in future of our children is worthy in my opinion.

I would take this chance to spread my belief to other parents; who want their children to grow up in positively reinforced, nurturing environment. Taking kids out of online games, allowing them to go out to meet friends, exchange ideas and learn from each other. The beauty of chess is that it can be whatever you want it to be. It transcends language, age, race, religion, politics, gender and socioeconomic backgrounds (Simon Williams). Whatever your circumstances, anyone can enjoy a good fight to the death over the chess board; friendly competitions to heat up the children’s competitive spirit.

As an inspiration, we would like to bring out to the community of City of Greater Dandenong. Our slogan is Kids shine, community thrives. Thus, we would like to introduce the Junior Chess Training Centre in the City of Greater Dandenong region to engage more members of the community (with emphasis on children) in fun extra-curricular activities like chess.