Summer Classes

Registration for Online Summer 2021 Classes is now open.  

For Students in Grades 1-8.  The U.S. Chess Center’s online summer classes consist of two classes of 60 minutes on two different days (i.e. Monday/Wednesday or Tuesday/Thursday) each week.  Each class has 20 minutes of instruction with a nationally certified chess coach (no videos) plus 40 minutes of supervised play.  Students are stratified by ability so that everyone is challenged but nobody is mystified. 

There are eight weeks available (starting June 21 through August 13) and you may register for as many weeks as you wish.  Each camp is independent of the others to give families flexibility in choosing the specific weeks that work best for their needs and to accommodate vacations or other activities/camps.  Curriculum will be challenging and interesting regardless of whether your student attends one, all, or just a few camp weeks.

Online Classes

Fall 2021 registration will begin in late August.

The U.S. Chess Center offers online classes for elementary school students (grades 1-6) in two 15-week sessions each year. The fall session of chess classes runs from October through January and the spring session of classes runs from February through May.

Our online classes are live and interactive with a nationally certified chess coach; we do not use videos. We stratify students by ability so that everyone is challenged but nobody is mystified.  Lessons are designed to help students develop confidence without boring them, and students are encouraged to share their ideas and questions with their group. Our teachers observe and listen to the students to ensure that nobody is left behind.

Weekday online playing sessions at 5:10 pm ET are structured so that children get to play with others at their skill level on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and with students from their school on Tuesday and Thursday. We use a proprietary rating system to track their progress. Students may play every weekday or less frequently, but we encourage them to compete at least once per week.

The U.S. Chess Center has found that students learn best if challenged appropriately. If we discover that a child is finding things too difficult, or not difficult enough, we’ll speak to the student and parents about changing to a more appropriate group. Once a student is enrolled in our program, there is no charge for moving from class to class.

After-School Clubs

Since 1993, the U.S. Chess Center has been running chess clubs in elementary schools throughout the national capital region.

We are planning to resume in-person after-school clubs for the 2021-2022 school year.
Check our list of active/upcoming after-school clubs here; or ask your PTA/PTO to contact us about starting a club at your school.
Registration opens in September 2021.

Membership in an after-school club includes:

  • One after-school meeting each week at the school with instruction and supervised play
  • Additional opportunities for online supervised play with others at their skill level on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and with students from their school on Tuesday and Thursday.
  • A short informational club meeting each week with the teacher for both students and parents (via Zoom)
  • Option to participate in our Elementary Team League


Elementary Team League:
This fun online competition takes place on eight Saturdays at 2:00 pm. Students in our clubs represent their schools in friendly matches with students from other schools.

During-School Classes

As part of our charitable mission, we work with Title I schools in the District of Columbia to teach chess during school hours as a compulsory class.  In this way, we are better able to reach students who can benefit the most from chess instruction—those students least likely to volunteer for an after-school chess club.

Saturday Chess Kids

Chess Kids is a Saturday morning class for children in kindergarten through sixth grade taught near our Silver Spring headquarters. Many adults who now are chess masters got their start in this class.

Chess Kids will resume when it is safe to meet in person.
In the meantime, sign up and we’ll notify you when we open registration for Chess Kids.

Sunday Chess

Registration for 2021-2022 Sunday Chess (Fall & Spring Semesters) is now open.
The Fall 2021 Semester will begin August 29, 2021.

For Students in Grades 7 – 12.  Sunday Chess is a weekly class from 1:30pm – 5:00pm ET.  We are hoping to resume in-person chess in the new school year, and if so we will integrate the in-person program with any online students.

Our teachers provide instruction to beginners and help more advanced players improve their strategy.  Lessons are challenging and informative for all students. 

Sometimes we play with other students from across the country and around the world. We have had online matches with students from China, Czech Republic, Iceland, Montenegro, Norway, Spain, Ukraine, and Zambia.  We have hosted teams visiting Washington from a variety of states. Some of our students have played in the World Amateur Team Championships (winning prizes for three years in a row) and we took several students on a great chess trip to Cuba

Adult Classes

Registration for Online Adult Classes is now open. 
Classes begin on a rolling basis as soon as there are sufficient students.

For Adults Only.  Our experienced chess teachers help adults in the beginner ranges advance to play a confident game of chess.  Classes meet online for 60 minutes once each week for four weeks.  Lessons are live and interactive with one of our experienced and nationally certified chess coaches; we do not use videos. 

This class is especially great for parents or teachers who wish to develop a solid foundation in the basic strategy of chess and/or improve their ability to play competitively with their children or students; but it’s also open to any adult who wishes to learn how to play chess properly.  Our goal is to put you on the path toward a lifelong love of the game.  New classes begin on a rolling basis as soon as we have a minimum of four students registered.