Article by Luca Gallina
Black and White Sport: CHESS was a project co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union from January of 2018 until December of 2019. The project involved organizations in four countries: Sport Club Glamour Events (Italy); Association Centro Social Paroquial dos Santos Mártires (Portugal); Catalan Chess Federation (Spain); and Latvian Academy of Sport Education (LASE) (Latvia). The initiative included five schools, ten teachers, and one hundred students (6-7 years old).
In this project, the innovative idea was to establish a stable European partnership including a University, chess clubs, schools, federations, chess players, and those who are enthusiasts of chess, The goal was to provide for the teaching of chess in European primary schools (ISCED 1).
Though this type of project had previously been discussed, no one had succeeded in setting up a work plan to reach the intermediate steps to achieve the objective. This initiative, for the first time in Europe, proposed an intermediate step of setting up a common teaching model among all European schools: this new teaching model would then be shared with the main European figures in the chess field – through reference models, explanation reports, and didactic materials.
The project’s added value at European level was in the coordinated participation of various European organizations and bodies which had already participated together in an earlier Erasmus+ programme. In time, the organizations refined common interests and practices and were willing to share them with small local sports associations and with schools in order to reach a more local level although in a European framework: a local level by experimenting in schools a curriculum model for teaching chess in primary schools (ISCED 1); a European framework as to establishing a Network aiming at the inclusion of chess in the curriculum of EU primary schools (ISCED 1). For this purpose, at the project’s conclusion the Network submitted the project results along with a request for the inclusion of chess in primary schools to the European Commission.
The European Network Chess at School (ENCS) was established by the partnering organizations.
The aim of the European Network Chess at School is to promote the inclusion of chess as a compulsory subject in the ISCED 1 schools of the European Union, through the following main activities:
- Dissemination of the educational chess book: “Chess Course Model for Primary Schools” developed by the project;
- Development based on the “Chess Course Model for Primary Schools” of a new model for the purposes of implementation in other school levels (ISCED 2 and ISCED 3);
- Spread and promotion of the European Network Chess at School in order to involve other Sports Associations and Schools.
For additional details about the Black and White Sport: CHESS project, contact Luca Gallina – firstname.lastname@example.org.