According to world renowned chess champion, Susan Polgar, the best age to start playing chess is between 4 and 6 years old – this of course it depends on the maturity of the individual child. Some children mature earlier than others and can start at age 4. She also wrote the following “My children started to learn the rules of chess before they were 5. However, they were not really into chess until many months later”.
As long as you make chess fun, children will love it. It is important that the game should be enjoyable for them to continue with chess.
Should you have younger children, allow them to watch you or their siblings play chess. Often the desire to emulate a brother or a sister could stimulate a younger child’s interest.
Shivky on the Chess.com blog commented on the following post: Right age to introduce chess to your children?
“I don’t think this question can be safely answered by today’s standards.
Late last year, the 5 yr old girl that I was mentoring was having the time of her life destroying kids 2-3 years older than her round after round at the at the Nationals tourney … until her penultimate round, where she got viciously mauled by a 4 year old girl!!!
Both of them were well adjusted kids who didn’t have pushy parents … they just couldn’t think of anything else that was more enjoyable than chess.
So it’s really a question of seeing if it is fun for them … and THEN seeing if they can’t get enough of it.
You know the little one is ready if she wakes you up in the morning at 6 a.m. with a chessboard in her hand. (I believe the one I was fortunate to work with did, according to her parents!)”