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What is ZoomChess?

ZoomChess is an online chess learning system for 4-18 year olds. The service delivers a personalized program of lessons, exercises, and puzzles to your child through a computer. As your child uses ZoomChess, the system dynamically adjusts and delivers content appropriate to their level. The ZoomChess curriculum was developed over 30 years of teaching children chess in the classroom, and has helped earn many scholastic State and National Championship titles in the U.S.

How often can my child use ZoomChess?

As often as they like. The lessons are colorful, kid-friendly animations, and short enough for kids to enjoy on their own. For best results, we recommend using ZoomChess each day and develop consistency. Just like learning a musical instrument or sports, playing well depends on focused practice. ZoomChess is an ideal at-home practice environment.

What ages is ZoomChess appropriate for?

ZoomChess was designed for kids, but it’s never too late to learn to play chess. We encourage kids from 3 to 103 to use ZoomChess.

Who made the lessons?

Jill Keto (a ZoomChess founder) provided the voice and animation to the curriculum and lessons of US Senior Master Harlan Lee (another ZoomChess founder), whose after-school programs have taught chess to thousands of students over 30 years, and helped develop many national champions.

Does my child need a computer?

Yes. ZoomChess must be used on a desktop or laptop computer.

Can my child access ZoomChess on an iPad or other mobile device?

The ZoomChess system uses Java, which is not supported on mobile phones or tablets.

Does my child have to know how to read?

ZoomChess is fully narrated by a talking teacher, so even the earliest readers will be able to play.

Can I have ZoomChess for free?

Sign up for the free 14-day trial, available on the homepage. After the 14-day period, if you decide you want to continue, you need to purchase a subscription. You can get ZoomChess free by encouraging your school to buy a group subscription. After-school chess clubs or other groups get discounted rates. ZoomChess makes a great gift, so you might encourage a relative or friend to buy it for your child.

Can my Pre-K child play ZoomChess?

Yes, ZoomChess is designed for kids, even pre-schoolers. Try the 14-day free trial to see if your little one enjoys chess on a computer. We recommend short sessions for very young kids, with real-world reinforcement on an actual chess board.

Is ZoomChess available in other languages besides English?

English is the only language in which ZoomChess is available at this time. If we decide to translate ZoomChess, what language would you like to hear? Let us know.

How can we use ZoomChess in our Homeschool co-op?

ZoomChess offers discounts to Homeschool group subscriptions. You can get a year of ZoomChess for as little as $25 per child for groups of 5 or more.  Using ZoomChess in a Homeschool group setting can become very lively and social, with kids huddling around one computer figuring things out as a team. You can access the lessons under “Topics” in the Training Room, if you want to watch and discuss a specific subject as a group. Then the kids can each practice the concept within their own ZoomChess account, or on a physical chess board – together.

You can use ZoomChess to teach groups of Homeschool kids with or without a chess coach. This can be directed by a Homeschool parent who is an experienced chess player. But often it is a parent who is a chess novice, but is eager to learn right along with their children. The beauty of ZoomChess is that it enables even very young children to progress quickly, and continue learning regardless of the playing ability of their own parents.

How can we use ZoomChess in our after-school Chess Club?

Normally, after-school Chess Clubs use ZoomChess as a supplement to chess club instruction, and as a convenient way for students to practice and play better at home. More practice = more tournament wins. Some chess clubs use ZoomChess during instruction time, showing videos, discussing concepts, and solving puzzles as a group. Some chess coaches use it to assign homework to their Chess Club kids. ZoomChess is very flexible, and Chess Clubs use it in many different ways.

How much does it cost?

An individual child can use ZoomChess for $6.95 per month, $29.95 for 6 months (28% off the full monthly rate), or $49.65 per year (40% off the full monthly rate). Families and Classes are eligible for further discounts. Please see PRICING for more details.

How do I subscribe to ZoomChess?

If you have already registered and have signed up for a free trial, you can subscribe by either clicking “Pricing” on the ZoomChess homepage OR from “My Account” on your Student Dashboard. If you have not signed up for a free trial, you should do so. You’ll get a better understanding of how the system works if you play ZoomChess before you buy.

What will my child learn?

With regular use, your child will become proficient in chess. ZoomChess will train your child through 1600+ rating (US Chess Federation), which is the level of a competitive high school tournament player.

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