MODEST MAMA

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Monday, October 14, 2013

Product Review: Chess House

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My family enjoys sitting down to play a game of chess together. As the younger kids get older, they too are anxious to learn. Problem is that with our busy schedule we don't always have the time to teach the younger kids how to play. It is so much easier just to sit down and play with the kids who already know how. Receiving a free Chess Learning Kit from Chess House in exchange for a review on this blog was the perfect solution to my problem.
 
Chess House offers everything you could ever dream of for playing a game of chess. From instructional DVD's and books, to beautifully carved pieces and boards, this place has it all. This was definitely a fun package to receive in the mail.
 
 

Our Starter Chess Learning Kit (ideal for ages 6 to 12) came in a neat green-camo bag and contained the instructional DVD, large rolled playing mat (measures 20 inches by 20 inches), and regulation sized pieces (the king is almost 4 inches high). Perfect for all chess players, the set is visually appealing and sized perfectly for beginners. The large pieces emphasize the differences so they are easier to tell apart. I love the fact that the pieces can all be stored in the zipped bag and shoved away in a closet or game shelf. The compartments in the bag make sure the pieces stay in play and intact.



The instructional DVD was easy to follow and fun to watch. After covering the usual basics of chess, it moves into some strategy. The teaching of the strategy, if nothing else, is reason enough to invest in this program. So many rule books, chess playing programs, and even some classes, don't emphasize strategy. They show you what to do and let you "play around" so you can figure it out on your own. Chess House is having you do strategic moves from the very beginning.



Not only that, but the DVD really stresses how enjoyable playing chess can be. We had all the boys watch the video, even though James (and Isaac to an extent) are already competent chess players. It really renewed their interest in the game. Since watching the video there has been an increase in the amount of chess being played around here. Sometimes a full game, other times a game to emphasize or teach trick moves. I also can't stress how much the actual starter set is contributing to this. Having such an appealing set and how easy it is to get out and put away make the whole experience more enjoyable.



The 49 minute video included in the starter set is only the first DVD of the 4 DVD series in Eliot's Chess School Series. This starter set with the roll-up board and pieces retails for $49.99, but at the time of this blog post can be purchased on the website for $39.99! You can add on an optional chess clock (under $30), and additional levels of the program starting at $40.00 a level.

I really felt that the Starter Set was an excellent find for us. Even though we might soon master the techniques in the "Pawn Level," the set itself is durable and portable. And there will probably always be children in my life who could use a good chess lesson.

WHAT DID MY PRODUCT TESTERS THINK

I thought the video was pretty good. The chess set was bigger than I thought it would be.

It was pretty fun.

I thought the video really drew you into the game of chess and it wasn't just a video to show you the moves. Even though it was the lowest level it showed strategy for certain pieces. The board and pieces were bigger than I am used to, but it was great to use them to get the new moves down.
You can get this Starter Chess Set and all your chess playing needs at Chess House. I wasn't the only one lucky enough to review product on my blog. Other folks over at The Schoolhouse Review Crew got to use this set with their family as well. Click here to read those reviews, or click the banner below.
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