Is Checkers Educational for Kids? How Your Kids Can Benefit

checkers board

If you are a parent, you might be wondering, "Is checkers game educational?" The answer is a resounding "yes!" While games like checkers and chess may not teach the traditional subjects, such as English, reading, math, or geography, they can play an important role in teaching other important life skills.

Is Checkers Game Educational: Pre-Math Skills

Checkers and its variations can teach important pre-math skills, such as:

  • Sorting by color
  • Directionals, such as forward, backward, and diagonal
  • Cause and effect
  • Logical thinking
  • Reasoning

These skills are important for preschool students or children who are slightly behind their peers in mathematics. For kids who have a firm grasp of pre-academics, the educational components of checkers are less tangible, but just as valuable.


The most obvious lesson learned by any board game is how to take turns. That can be especially true of strategizing games like checkers. Players must wait patiently while their opponent thinks out their next move. To a young child, that wait can seem like a lifetime! The ability to sit quietly and politely while waiting for his turn will serve your child in school and on teams for many years to come.


Although checkers appears to be a simple, childish game, there is actually a lot of thought and strategizing necessary. A player must think ahead several moves, trying to predict his opponent's next move. More mature players learn to force captures, sacrificing their own men in an effort to capture a King or trap the opposition. Thinking, "If I move here, she will do this," forces children to plan and consider the consequences of their actions, two skills that are essential for a quality life. Although cloaked under the premise of a fun game, these strategizing sessions stimulate your child's brain. Planning and strategizing skills learned in a game easily translate into other areas of life.

Social Skills

Although it isn't always considered an education, learning to get along well with others is just as important as learning the three R's. Kids must interact with others on the playground, at daycare, at school, and at home. As they grow older, they must get along with professors, co-workers, superiors, and spouses. Learning early to deal with the pain of losing is a valuable skill that will enrich your child's life. It's just as important to learn to be a gracious winner.

Making Checkers More Educational

Hopefully you now see that the answer to, "Is checkers game educational?", is, in fact, "Yes." There are simple, non-official things you can do to make the educational aspects even more obvious. Depending on your child's age and ability, you might try the following:

  • Players must answer a math problem before their turn
  • Players must spell words before their turn
  • Use flash cards between turns
  • Tape numbers or letters on the checker board squares. As your child lands on a square, he must read the letter or number before advancing.
  • For children who already know the basic numbers and letters, turn things up a notch by taping math problems or words on the squares.
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Is Checkers Educational for Kids? How Your Kids Can Benefit