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Chess Added To The Hungarian School Curriculum

  • SonofPearl
  • on 2013.03.14. 5:18.

PRESS RELEASE: Chess is Officially in the Hungarian National Curriculum!

The Hungarian Institute for Educational Research and Development has released a supplement to the National Curriculum, and made Judit Polgar’s "Skill-building Chess” subject available for elementary schools from September 2013.

The highest rated woman chess player of all-time, Judit Polgar



The Judit Polgar Chess Foundation for Educational Benefits has been working on the "Chess Palace" program for more than a year, running pilot projects in several schools from September 2012. The program proved to be very successful with children, teachers, parents and educational professionals as well. From last September there has been a non-stop interest from many other school in Hungary, and also many schools from several other countries. Because of the great interest in this initiative, the Foundation regularly holds open lessons to demonstrate the methodology to teachers and professionals interested in introducing the subject at their own school.

Judit Polgar, with her sister Sofia



Judit Polgar has also developed an elementary student book and workbook series called "Chess Palace" for 1-4 grade students. This, so far unique, teaching material, instead of teaching chess as a sport and game the traditional way, goes beyond the normal boarders of chess teaching, and focuses on improving academic skills, logical, creative thinking and problem solving, preparing children to be able to accept the challenges of the digital society they live in.  The Chess Palace series is supported by a teacher training, a very practical teachers’ guide book and also provides a detailed learning toolkit available even for schools with very limited finances, so they can adopt the whole program easily.




"I’m glad we were able to come up with this extremely complex and well-structured program, and find the way to integrate chess into public education in Hungary, as one of the first countries to do this in Europe. In this project we use chess as an exceptional learning tool, and we found the way to make strong connection with fundamental subject such as math, reading and writing. We managed to completely integrate our chess into the regular elementary school curriculum. The winners of tomorrow will be able to deliver smart strategic and creative thinking and quick problem-solving, which can all be playfully imbibed by children through chess." said Judit Polgar after the official announcement of the decision.   

The graphics and illustrations of the Chess Palace series have been created by Judit’s sister, Sofia Polgar. The most obvious way to reach children in a digital world is through their own digital devices, such as tablets and smart phones. Judit Polgar has achieved this already, having launched her own chess application called ChessPlayground as well.



The European Parliament adopted the Written Declaration "Chess in School" in 2012. The EP's declaration has an aim to bring attention to chess as a teaching tool to schools because it directly contributes to academic performance and makes kids smarter, more critical thinker, better problem solver, and more independent decision maker while enjoying themselves. 

As a new step in the "Chess in Education" efforts Judit Polgar, Garry Kasparov and President of the European Chess Union, Silvio Danailov has recently met the EU Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, Mrs. Androulla Vassiliou, in Brussels.

During the meeting Mrs. Vassiliou expressed her satisfaction with the big progress of the European Chess Union concerning the project "Chess in school" and the big support which the Written Declaration had received by the MEPs in the EU Parliament.



Photos from Judit Polgar's official website.

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  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Some people here has negativ feedback to Polgar and Leko. Please check that in Hungary live 10 million people but we are on the champions list forver :)

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    I would like to say that this is an excellent idea.

    Chess is after all not just a game, the literary and historical background is phenomenal. Consider chess book publishers like Quality Chess (UK) http://www.qualitychess.co.uk/    and then of course Mongoose Press (USA) http://www.mongoosepress.com/   and you basically see my point regarding literature. There are also plenty of chess companies that produce hand crafted chess equipment and it can be extremely beautiful and affordable; as an example Old Polish Chess is spectacularly beautiful http://www.polishchess.com/old-polish-insert-tray-p-25.html  Just before I end my comment, their is also a web site to show even more affordable and practical hand crafted chess sets http://www.polishchess.com/

    My regards to everyone.


  • 3 év ezelőtt


    very cool

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    In November, Kapsarov came to Slovenia to visit Maribor, the Eurpoean Capital of Culture. He was also here to sign a letter of intent, regarding the opening of a Kasparov Academy.


  • 3 év ezelőtt


    Yea, very awesome. She's a nice gm fella

  • 3 év ezelőtt



  • 3 év ezelőtt


    Great progress!

    Chess is much more than the goal of winning -- winning is only the sporting aspect of the game, and only for some players.  Fundamentally, the game is about harmonizing one's available resources (pieces, space, tempi) and optimizing their joint performance toward a common goal, not to mention the joyful sharing of the game's variety by two (or more) players.  

    This is a much larger theme that if kids learn about it, they don't need to "win" any more -- they'll instead be equipped with life-long skills that are more valuable than that narrow definition!

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    I wish this chess program be implemented also in Philippines school curriculum.

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    who knows maybe they'll produce another Judith Polgar or Polgar sisters!

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    It really makes sense! 

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    It really makes sense on every level to have Chess in schools! However, it does make learning fun????? 

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    This is great, because it was done in Armenia also several years ago, and it gives excellent results!

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    Let's hope Hungary doesn't produce any more Lekos, we already have more than enough draws!

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    Amazing stuff! Let's hope other countries follow suit

  • 3 év ezelőtt

    WGM Natalia_Pogonina

    Well done!

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    Written Declaration 50/2011 - Chess in School




    At the other hand :

    A written declaration is more like political pressure on the Commission to act in this area, but there is absolutly no legal obligation on the Commission.

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    If we only had this in Sweden.

  • 3 év ezelőtt


  • 3 év ezelőtt


    The highest rated woman chess player of all-time, Judit Polgar

    This Caption is wrong; as "all-time" is not yet over!

    The correct word would be "till date"

  • 3 év ezelőtt


    I wish the schools and the kids great success.

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