Does Chess make your child smarter?

By Marnie Adams, Contributor @ Kids in Perth 08 Mar 2022

Little siblibg boy playing chess

With Chess being so prevalent in movies and pop culture such as Harry Potter, X-Men and the Netflix drama series, The Queen’s Gambit, let us explore how this timeless game benefits children...


Firstly, does Chess make your child smarter?

Results are inconclusive. Some studies note children with weekly Chess classes improving Maths and reading test scores between 7% and up to 23% if they regularly play tournament chess. Other studies found statistically insignificant improvements.

However, it is certain that Chess exercises both sides of the brain as you see players use their left side for critically thinking solutions while the right side unlocks creativity for strategic moves.


Chess is growing in popularity among children around the world. Why is that?

Firstly, it is a game with little financial barriers and welcomes everyone.
Unlike sports, athleticism is not needed for playing and thriving at chess.

Also, it’s now cool to be good at Chess!


Could it be parents shunning away from technology for their children?
Yes, we're all pretty much addicted to dopamine from our phones.
Chess offers screen-free and more sociable interaction than video games.

Also, it's a great opportunity to banter and bond with your child.

Chess Puzzles | Can you solve these?

Fun chess puzzles to solve with the kids

Click on the gallery for full screen view.

Which Chess program would we recommend in Perth?

Dennis Holland, founder of Total Chess, seeks to introduce and spark a love for Chess in as many children as possible.

Since 2007, he has been dedicated to this amazing mission.

Total Chess offers regular chess clubs with classroom and play-based learning, online learning and tournaments for friendly competition!

During school holidays, they conduct online Chess workshops.

Learn more about Total Chess by visiting or calling 0432 935 088.

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Dennis Holland, Founder of Total Chess

Meet the Founder | Dennis Holland


To make chess as popular in Western Australia as it is in other parts of the world.


How did you discover Chess?

At school where they had a chess club running during lunch times.

What makes you so passionate about Chess?

I just love the challenge that you get from playing chess.

There is always room for improvement and the process of improving and learning a skill is very rewarding.

Why should a child learn Chess?

I believe there are many reasons a child should learn and play chess but one of the most important is how to cope with setbacks. How do you cope after losing a game and how do you learn from that experience to improve your chess.

How is Chess perceived these days compared to when you first started Total Chess?

Over the past few years, I feel chess is getting a lot more popular and many more parents are wanting their children to learn chess. Once the child gets the opportunity to learn and play chess, it’s very rare that the child doesn’t enjoy it.

How do you get good at Chess?

Practice, practice and practice more. The more you play chess the better you’ll get just like any other skill/activity. It’s also very important to learn from your mistakes, so analysing your games to pinpoint your mistakes and work out what you could of done is very important.

What valuable life lessons have Chess taught you?

The most important life lesson I’ve learnt from chess is that if you never give up you can never fail.

When things haven’t gone to plan, I just stuck with the idea and worked out what’s going wrong, change the plan if necessary and with the extra time, success has followed.

Also, success doesn’t have to always come from winning.

I believe improving on a skill is more important than the instant result and chess helps you with understanding this process much better.

About Total Chess | Quality Chess Coaching

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Total Chess focuses on these three steps:

  • Give people (especially kids) the opportunity to learn and play chess.
  • Educate people (parents/teachers) about the benefits of playing chess.
  • Support and encourage players to play in State, National and International Chess Events.

Total Chess is dedicated to the concept that playing chess on a regular basis will improve your life.



  • Online Chess Program/School Holidays
  • Chess Lessons during School Class
  • Before School, Lunch Time, Afterschool Chess Club
  • Private Tuition/Coaching
  • Online Coaching / School Holiday Programs
  • Tournaments

Total Chess Locations

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