I taught my four-year-old son how to play chess a couple days ago. It was his idea. He was curious about it because I have been talking about chess with my wife, and because our chess board is on the underside of the Chinese checkers set we have been playing with as a family.

He and I played a few games over the holiday weekend. This afternoon, he played with his grandmother and grandfather, which was his idea. This evening, when I suggested we play checkers, he cried because he wanted to play chess. (Of course we could play chess instead of checkers.) He learned how all the pieces moved (except for castling and en passant) in one quick lesson. I am trying to teach him about checkmate now. It is great fun to have something new to do with him. I look forward to teaching my daughter now to play, too.