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The Chess Club Making All The Right Moves at North Atlanta

Every+Monday+morning%2C+Warriors+wage+battle+with+clashing+knights%2C+kings%2C+rooks%2C+bishops+and+pawns+during+meetings+of+the+North+Atlanta+chess+club.+Sophomore+Harrison+Head+and+freshman+Alan+Spektor+go+head+to+head.+
Every Monday morning, Warriors wage battle with clashing knights, kings, rooks, bishops and pawns during meetings of the North Atlanta chess club. Sophomore Harrison Head and freshman Alan Spektor go head to head.

Every Monday morning, Warriors wage battle with clashing knights, kings, rooks, bishops and pawns during meetings of the North Atlanta chess club. Sophomore Harrison Head and freshman Alan Spektor go head to head.

Shemar Williams

Shemar Williams

Every Monday morning, Warriors wage battle with clashing knights, kings, rooks, bishops and pawns during meetings of the North Atlanta chess club. Sophomore Harrison Head and freshman Alan Spektor go head to head.

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Looking for a great way to exercise your mental skills? Want to increase your concentration and boost your memory? Want to look and be the smart brainiac of your class? Well, rook no further than North Atlanta’s Chess Club.

The club currently has about five people in it. Members meet every Monday morning in the Media Center to compete and to go over basic and advanced moves. There are more than 288 billion different possible positions to take with only four pieces, so there is a lot to learn. With only a 64-space chessboard and 16 pieces, it’s amazing how there are more choices to make than there are quarks in the entire universe.

“I enjoy chess because it’s very challenging,” said team community Coach Damir Studen, a two-time Georgia chess champion. “The game challenges the mind in a different way than most games.”

Studen mentioned he’s been playing more than 20 years and the game is still teaching him new things.   

The coach also teaches eight other chess clubs comprised of several hundred students. He enjoys seeing them all succeed and his ambitions are great for North Atlanta’s club. “The club’s small now, but it has to start somewhere,” he said.  

Each time members meet, they first review moves and then open up their boards and get out their pieces and start play. The last tournament one of the group members participated in was on Oct. 15. The event, called “Call of Chess: Modern Warfare,” resulted in a North Atlanta cluster victory, which was a strong showing for students from both North Atlanta and our school’s public feeder schools.  

“The chess club is somewhere where the smart cool kids can hang out,” said sophomore Harrison Head. “The game lets me play something where I hear nothing but my own thoughts.”

Head, a leader on the team, said members always welcome newcomers to their meetings. “Come and join our band of merrymen,” he said.  

There are many scientifically proven reasons as to why chess is a great mental sport. Benefits include increased creativity, improved reading and analyzing skills, and the game has been known to raise people’s IQ. And another added bonus is that chess also helps prevent Alzheimer’s.

The club is a recipient for the grant from the NAHS Foundation and the teacher sponsor is Lori McCall. With so many clubs offered in North Atlanta, there is bound to be one that will feel just like home. So to all those chess-enthusiasts, or even just people who enjoy a good game, go join the Chess Club. It is definitely something to check out.

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Thinking with Excellence to Inform and Enlighten
The Chess Club Making All The Right Moves at North Atlanta