Winning Chess Exercises for Kids

Author: Jeff Coakley (2007)

Nobody is born a chess champion. Even gifted players must work at the game if they want to improve. Talent is not enough. Good study habits and determination are just as important.
Anyone can become a strong chessbplayer if they are willing to put in the necessary time and effort. The one thing that separates players the most is tactics. The ability to see ahead and calculate variations is the key to winning.

Best move contests:
In the book there are 100 Best move contests, each consisting of 9 chess positions & 1 bonus question.
In positions 1-2-3, white has a forced mate. Usually you can checkmate in four moves or less, but sometimes it takes longer. The three problems have a theme, like " back rank mate", and the last one in the row is the hardest. In positions 4-5-6, white has a combination that wins material. At the end, you should be ahead by a piece (N, 8, R, Q) or by the exchange (R for 8,or R for N). Winning a pawn is not enough. In positions 7-8-9, there is one best move for white. But the goal is not always the same. In some cases, white wins or gets an advantage. In other cases, white draws or gets an equal game. Number 10 is a bonus question. Some are challenging, some are insightful, some are just fun.

Whistle  Have a go at this Best move contest:

Position 1     Solution                     Position 2     Solution                     Position 3     Solution

Position 4     Solution                     Position 5     Solution                     Position 6     Solution

Position 7     Solution                     Position 8     Solution                     Position 9     Solution

Thumbs up Bonus question: Is it possible to answer a check with a check ?  Solution

Print your own pages from the book (PDF - 244 pages) - hosted on my Google Drive

Chess Secrets Revealed

Author: Fred Reinfeld (1972)

All positions are taken from actual game play

1. How to exploit open lines
The creative chessplayer knows how to utilise opportunities for attack. Most of these opportunities come from the occupation of open lines by your pieces - queen, rooks, bishops.

Superior mobility brings its own opportunities and advantages.

Position 1
White's considerably freer position gives him a vastly superior game ...

Position 2
White has sacrificed material to open lines for his pieces to attack ...

Whistle  Puzzle        Hint        How it ended

2. How to create open lines
It's not enough to know how to exploit lines of attack; you must also know how to create them.

Position 3
White's castled king appears to be safely protected, but ...

Position 4
White's dynamic rook sacrifice opens up a key diagonal ...

Whistle  Puzzle        Hint        How it ended

3. Attack and counterattack
Some of the most threatening attacks can be stopped in their tracks by courageous counterattack. Too many players give up when facing a strong threat. Don't forget, creative play can win the day ! A counterattack can sometimes start with a defensive move.

Position 5
White threatens checkmate in the next move or two ...

Position 6
Black is a piece down but is well placed with 3 extra pawns ...

Whistle  Puzzle        Hint        How it ended

4. Tactical Finesse
Surprising, elegant moves that give the game a completely new turn and usually leaves the opponent helpless.

Position 7
Black's pin with the rook is very strong and leads to an elegant attack ...

Position 8
Black is 3 pawns ahead and appears to have an easy win, especially as White's queen is too far away from the kingside to take part in any attack ...

Whistle  Puzzle        Hint        How it ended

5. Combinations
Many combinations by creative players are outstanding for imaginative depth and precise calculation.

Position 9
Black could exchange queens with a fair game ...

Position 10
White's forces are concentrated on the kingside and Black's pieces are awkwardly situated for defensive purposes ...

Whistle  Puzzle        Hint        How it ended