It helps you with solving. Not just in the game, but also real life.
~ Omar, grade 6


Chess Institute of Canada (CIC) uses chess to develop interpersonal and social-emotional skills, openness, and resilience, leading to improved mental health and well-being, increased student engagement, academic improvement, and greater respect and appreciation for oneself and others. We know it’s working based on what we see in our programs, but also:

  • What our Schools say about our programs,
  • What our Parents tell us about the difference we make, and
  • What our Participants themselves tell us about what they get from chess.

We’d love to hear from you as well.

Please share your experience with us >

What schools are saying

Principals and other school officials notice the difference our chess programs make in their schools – in their students’ relationships, in focus and engagement, and in the many skills we work on as we teach the game.

I recommend this program for any school looking at building self esteem, improving peer relationships and challenging students to further develop their critical thinking skills. This program is a winner!
~ David Crichton, Principal, Market Lane Public School, Toronto

Chess Institute of Canada has been an incredible addition to our school. The students who have participated in the program have truly enjoyed it, and their enthusiasm was evident every time they talked to me about playing the game. What sets Chess Institute apart is their mandate: to ensure the participation of every child who wishes to join. This is very important to my school as we are a socio-economically diverse community. I am pleased to say that Chess Institute never hesitated to accommodate the needs of our families, and the children definitely benefited from it.
~ Ryan Naidoo, Principal, Bruce Public School, Toronto

This program has been a windfall for the students at Regent Park. The students are having great fun learning the game of chess while at the same time picking up valuable life skills. Every school in the country should be so fortunate to have such a winning program as this!
~ Jeffrey Crivellaro, Special Needs Assistant, Regent Park / Duke of York P.S., Toronto

Not only have the children in our school learned the game of chess, but also Ted and his instructors have instilled a sense of fair play, and cooperation. Ted incorporates social and thinking skills strategies into the program that challenges and motivates the students. The students have had the opportunity to play against other schools and develop good sportsmanship. I recommend this program for any school looking at building self esteem and peer relationships. This program is a winner!
~ John Duwyn, Principal, Faywood Arts-Based Curriculum Public School, Toronto

The program not only delivered opportunities for the children to practice thinking about the consequences of their choices, but went above and beyond. Through teaching the children chess, we witnessed the budding of interest in a game the children can enjoy throughout their lives, which increased their ability to focus and pay attention.
~ Karen Sewell, Director, Camp Wimodausis, Child Development Institute, Toronto

What parents are saying

On a more personal level, it’s really great to hear from parents about the difference our camps, clubs, and tournaments have made for their children.

Simon’s involvement in the chess club has been one of the most character building activities that he has had during his eleven years of life. He has learned so much more than simply learning how to play chess. I know that other parents feel as we do but I wanted to extend our gratitude and thanks to you.”
~ Donna Gray, Parent

Parker has been to many summer camps but I think it is fair to say that this is his favourite one yet.  It seems to be a perfect blend of mental, physical and creative activity and he comes home everyday so excited and anxious to tell us about his activities that day and his chess matches.  Thank you again for putting together such a great camp.
~ Brad and Harue Macdonald, Parents

Thanks so much for the photos and a great week of camp! Aaron thoroughly enjoyed it and spent the weekend challenging us to games of chess, proudly showing off new moves and knowledge he learned from you. He also loved the other activities – especially archery. We were really impressed with the level of organisation and range of activities you offered. Looking forward to continuing our association with the Chess Institute – hopefully through chess club at school this coming year. Thanks again!
~ Andrea Quesnelle, Parent

Thank you for all the hard work you commit to this enterprise. As a parent I truly appreciate it and Oliver loves to play chess in a way that is very healthy (he just likes it, it’s not stressful or seriously competitive – just fun) and it is thanks to you.
~ Susan Philpott, Parent

Thank you also for making camp safe and fun for Joshua once again. He had a great time. You do an amazing job.
~ Roxana Crane, Parent

What participants are saying

Above all, we love to hear how much fun children and youth – and even adults – have in our CIC chess programs. While our goal is to inspire and teach life-long lessons that go far beyond chess, we certainly aim to share the joy of the game as well. Here’s what some of our participants said about their chess games, or why they like chess.

I like how you never know how it’s going to end up.
~ Sarah

My opponent didn’t activate his pieces, but I activated my pieces. Then I pushed a pawn and checkmated.
~ Duncan

You get really thrilled, and then you actually get scared!
~ Gabriel

I like the strategic thinking and stuff. And the tactical manoevring.
~ Karina

You verse your opponent and then if you lose, you learn something from that.
~ Anish