Boris Avrukh, Gopal Menon Deliver Training to Illinois Youth


Thanks to the tireless efforts of Warren Junior Scholar Director Scott Daniels, over 50 Illinois youth received training from top-rated Illinois players on January 15.

20 or so Warren Scholars were provided 90 minutes of instruction from GM Boris Avrukh, the top-rated active Illinois player by 80 points. GM Avrukh is the author of many opening books from Quality Press -- so it's no surprise that he was asked to speak on openings.

More than 30 Rising Stars were entertained and educated by NM Gopal Menon at approximately the same time on a separate WebEx conference. Menon, the 14th-rated Illinois player, encouraged the Stars to use "active learning" ideas in absorbing opening concepts.

He refered to the three-stage learning model: identifying the concept, incorporating the idea into one's own life (or chess games) and ultimately being able to explain the concept to others.

Arukh used a Chessbase interface while Menon used Lichess. Later on in the year, the Scholars and Stars will receive specific training on how to use the Chessbase software effectively to their studies.

Although formal recognition as a Scholar or a Star is only conferred as of a July to June class, it is possible that new qualifiers may participate in Star programs. If you (or your child or student) hits a US Chess rating of 1500 while in high school... or 1200 for younger students, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.for consideration.

The ICA encourages all who might wish to help out with this exciting program to contact the same email address. The ICA can only fulfill its potential with the help of volunteer hours.  If you've got some time, we'll try to help provide a meaningful experience for you -- and the Illinois chess community.