Marion Richardson Primary School is in
Shadwell, Tower Hamlets. It is a densely population region
of East London where a high proportion of the residents are
Bangladeshi origin families.
involvement at the school began in September 2013 after Miss Rubena Begum, a new teacher at the school, heard about the
programme and wanted to introduce chess to her classroom.
Initially taught to Marion Richardsonís
two Year 3 classes, the chess lessons quickly proved popular
with both students and staff. In addition to the formal
chess curriculum, the school organised a trip to the London
Chess Classic in December 2013 and in the Summer Term of
2014 the school played host to a chess tournament which
featured teams from all the other schools in the CSC Tower
After a year with CSC schools usually
repeat the chess lessons with a new cohort of children. At
Marion Richardson, however, both teachers who had
experienced chess in their classrooms were very keen for it
to continue. For 2014/2015, the Marion Richardson chess
programme extended to four classes: the two Year 3 classes
were given introductory chess lessons and the children who
had already had a year of chess were given more advanced
work in Year 4.
In addition to chess lessons for 120
children in class time, Marion Richardson has also
introduced a Lunchtime Chess Club. From small beginnings -
in an early week the attendance was literally the tutor and
one child - the club has gone from strength to strength. At
the time of writing, the most recent club attracted
seventeen children - a record high - and numbers havenít
dipped below a dozen throughout the Spring Term.
As a CSC Tutor, working at Marion
Richardson has been a joy. The teachers and classroom
assistants are fully supportive of the aims of the chess
programme and the children are very enthusiastic, keen to
learn and always wanting to take part in the next event.
In the summer term Marion Richardson
hosted CSCís annual Tower Hamlets borough tournament, which
was attended by 48 pupils from three different schools.
Marion Richardson were the top scoring team, and one of
their pupils achieved a 100% score.
The school also entered two teams for the
Yes2Chess challenge. Choosing participants and team members
from the high number of deserving children has become an
Chess in Schools and Communitiesí
collaboration with Marion Richardson has come a long way in
less than two years, and I am delighted that they have been
awarded a British Chess Educational Trust award for 2014/15.
Weíre already looking forward to finding out where it will
go in 2015-16.
"Chess has helped us to improve our
behaviour in school. As a result, we are more focused in our
learning than before."
"Ö. chess inspires our brains."
"Ö weíve played for 2 years and we
have learnt a lot. We also are really good at chess."
"I won a medal Ö I take chess
"I like chess because itís a game of
war and it doesnít mean you win all the time it matters that
"I like chess because itís a fun game
with itís own language and every piece has itís own way to
"I like chess because my brothers play