House chess events have been taking place with great success in lockdown format, with games on ‘lichess’ – one of several chess platforms which have been flourishing around the world.
House chess events have been taking place with great success in lockdown format, with games on ‘lichess’ – one of several chess platforms which have been flourishing around the world. Besides being really convenient, they are a very good education platform.
The Friday before half-term saw over 50 boys involved all afternoon in three separate competitions for Year 11, Lower Sixth and Upper Sixth. Winning houses were as follows:
- Year 11 Leycester
- Lower Sixth Greville
- Upper Sixth Guy
Special mention should go to one of the members of Leycester’s winning Year 11 team, who played despite being in Hong Kong, and the competition finishing just before midnight HK time, and on Chinese New Year!
House Chess competitions will conclude next Monday (1 March) with separate Year 7 and 8 competitions taking place after school (4.15 to 5.45). Boys involved will need to have enrolled on lichess.com (it is free and password-protected). Good luck to those boys and thanks to all those who have played across the other year groups and to Mr Cooley for organising the competitions.
Year 7 and 8 Remote House Chess
The final instalments of house chess, the competitions for Year 7s and Year 8s took place on Monday 4 March. Year 7s in particular coped well with their first house chess competition and having to do this on a remote platform, and the Year 7 competition was eventually decided by a single game between the top two teams, Brooke and Oken, with Brooke being victors.
In Year 8, Greville were first and Tudor second.
Overall however, the real success of these competitions has been not which houses won, but in the success of the lockdown platform. House chess has expanded this year, with over 300 individual matches and around 120 boys being involved, mirroring a huge worldwide expansion in the use of online chess platforms. We have used lichess.org, which provides a free and secure platform, on which boys can play against a computer, or set up a unique link to email to their friends to play. They can then replay their games, with computer suggestions of the best moves available, if they wish to see where the blundered! Even when we are back to normal, I think that house chess will still continue via ‘BYOD’, and is also something boys might like to try if they have to self-isolate.