kidds and Go

This tag is associated with 22 posts

Go pedagogy in South Kora (video): RELAY BADUK – 릴레이 바둑 ㅋ (Girls vs. Boys Team)

Tkts (again) to 김한비 (Daejeon/South Korea) for another wonderful short video about how kidds are being educated in Go (Baduk) in South Kora. – In my understanding “Relay Baduk” is teaching a lot more than only about GO itself… within an environment of “friendly competition” (here ‘girls team’ vs. ‘boys team’).


Go pedagogy in South Korea: Relay Baduk

I have no doubts about that “Relay Baduk” can give kidds the skills as team players, and they learn to overtake responsability for their own decisions against their peer group (team), understand / read silently the doing of their Go partners (e.g. as we know in Rengo / Pair GO) and give support to each other (e.g. the stronger players help the weaker players).

I like in the video, that there is given “no time pressure” by the teacher. Every kidd takes the time it needs to think about next best move so it looks. – The discipline of the kidds is fantastic, no one is yealing around about a “bad move” of its class mate (as we probably might know it in Western schools). Everybody tries his / her best with fully concentration.

Critics & Feedback are welcome…

릴레이 바둑 ㅋ

2nd round of “Boys team vs. Ladies team”

어제 분에 못참아서온 남학생들 ㅋ
기어이 오늘 남여 성대결에서 이겨서
1 : 1이 되었습니다

The Boys team wins !

내일은 뭘로 결승을할까

Recording Date: 29th January 2015
Editor: 김한비 (Daejeon)
Length: 02:00 min.

Go Homework (video): How to memorize Baduk opening (fuseki)

Go-Homework-Thumbnail-2 Go-Homework-Thumbnail-3 Go-Homework-Thumbnail-4

When the Go pupils replay the opening (fuseki),
they say the number of each move in Chinese and in ENG.

포석 외워오기 숙제를 중국어로 영어로 검사받는 아이들입니다

Tks to 김한비 (Daejeon, South Korea) for this short video giving an interesting perspective about Go teaching andd its cultural context.


Why you should take Go to your kids’ school (lasindias.com)

related article: The Art of Playing GO
(1:1 reprint by written and friendly courtesy of the author/translater/Grupo Cooperativo de las Indias)

David de Ugarte

(November 15th, 2014) – Go is becoming a phenomenon in American schools. Scientists suggest that it improves children’s intellectual development and “executive function,” while pedagogues say it reduces violence and frustration. But it also offers something even more valuable than that.


ganadora-150x150In Europe, the growing success of the European youth and student championships points to the game’s development in increasingly younger ages thanks to the first school programs.

In France, the city of Strasbourg became a pioneer in 2008 with a training program at three schools. The program not only remains in operation today, but has also generated a vibrant local school league. Teachers tell how the practice of the game has improved children’s behavior, reducing the bickering among them, and helping them gain concentration.

But it is in the United States where Go school programs are now succeeding, driven by USGO and the evidence that links the practice of the game in high school to better results in University admission tests. Moreover, thanks to the support of the American Go Foundation an American Little League has come up, as well as a North American championship with Mexican, American, and Canadian children that thrives on the growing number of school teams.

What did French and American schools see in Go?

irvington-go-groupThe most famous Chinese legend that explains the birth of the game attributes its creation to the mythical Emperor Yao (2100 BCE). The emperor wanted to name his eldest son, Danju, heir, but he was disorganized, had difficulty carrying things through to the end, and according to many stories, very little capacity to endure frustration. So the king devised a game that would allow his son to develop a capacity for purpose, the ability to concentrate, and serenity in life.

This is just a legend, but it is surely interesting that the myth presents the game as an educational intervention. Because the truth is that scientific studies show something very similar. Neuroscience tells us about the brain’s executive function, specifically in charge of providing us with the capacity for concentration, calculation, for developing purpose and a long-term perspective. The good news is that this function can be developed through exercise, and that evidence shows that it reduces frustration and violence by increasing the capacity for self-control in children.

What neuroscience tells us

edmonton-150x150What would the best exercise be for achieving this? Of course, chess is very successful in MRI brain studies. But when in 2003 the same neurologists studied the effects of Go, they reached a surprising conclusion: it not only mobilized more brain areas, but it also “lateralized” more and differently than chess. To say it bluntly, playing Go helps interconnect the various functions of our brain. Even more interesting were the results of a landmark study conducted in 2013 by Korean neurologists comparing the brain activity of players undergoing professional training with that of amateurs. According to this study, playing Go on a regular basis “rewires” our brain, allowing greater integration of various functions, improving not only the executive function but also “intuitive thinking,” that is, the automatic recognition of patterns in new situations.

In light of this, in 2011, a protocol was created in Japan for studying the impact of the inclusion of Go as an extracurricular activity on children’s executive function, under the hypothesis that it would improve “emotional and behavioral control.” The practical results seem to support this idea. So far, the results of empirical studies tell us that Go improves cognitive function, and brain activity in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

A moving story

yasuda1And the inclusion of Go in Japanese schools has a history and a name: Yasuda Yasutoshi. Yasutoshi was a professional Go player. He reached the ninth dan, the highest level, in 1998. In early 1993 he was moved by a story: a child died at his school’s gym choked by a rope “while playing.” Yasuda blamed bullying: “There is something terribly wrong in Japan,” he thought. And he felt helpless.

He shared his anger with his friends, most of them professional players like him, members of a generation which was then facing the sweeping “new style” of Korean baduk, with its televised games and its emphasis on speed.

At one point I became obsessed with doing something about the social problem – bullying – beyond simply popularizing Go.

yasuda3And Yasuda started volunteering to teach “atari Go,” a simplified version of the game, in kindergartens. The magic of the union between play and a minimum of ritual – the greetings before a match, thanking the opponent upon finishing- started to bear fruit almost immediately. Teachers observed that children extended their circle of relationships. More kids played with other kids beyond the gameboard. Their ability to concentrate increased. Against all odds, children four to six years old were able to sustain attention for more than an hour.

A Go match never follows the same pattern as any other. So children develop the ability to concentrate while trying to anticipate the opponent’s moves. It seems that this type of activity had not hitherto existed in early childhood education.

Given the results, the program quickly spread through primary schools in the region. Yasuda visited them, giving a sample class for teachers. Within a year, the experience was already relatively well known in the educational world and Yasuda received new invitations regularly. Then came the first special schools. First, for children with mental disabilities, and later a center for deaf children.

yasuda2And new “miracles” emerged: children who exhibited violent behavior and tended to isolate themselves discovered a way of relating through symbolic communication. A traditional way of referring to the game in Japanese literally means “speaking with your hands.” Children who showed no expression smiled for the first time in front of their peers and tutors.

On my third visit to Himawari-no-sato, Tsuru – a child with a mental disability, usually withdrawn, inexpressive and prone to violent reactions- was playing with another child while I did the same. Then I realized Tsuru was trying to ask me something by looking at me straight in the eyes. At that time he had already become a good player, by far the best player in the center. When I looked at the board, it was his turn to move. He could capture the opponent’s stones if he wanted. He sent me a silent message with his eyes: “Can I eat these stones?” I didn’t say anything but I indicated a “yes” with my eyes and he proceeded to capture them. We repeated the same thing three times. The fourth time Tsuru didn’t capture the stones, even knowing he could. Instead, he put a stone where his opponent could capture it. The opponent captured a stone for the first time and ran around the room with joy. Seeing the joy of his opponent, Tusru smiled as well. His face showed that he was happy.

Tyasuda4he program later expanded to day centers and nursing homes. And they began to organize play dates between primary school children and children in special schools, between children and adults, between parents and children, between elders from different centers… Yasuda’s project was beginning to build intergenerational communcation channels and spaces that had been swept away by economic development. “By playing Go with elders at the day center,” says the director of a primary school, “children have learned to develop kindness and care for others. Each seems more independent and self-confident than before.”

Soon, more than 10,000 children and adults participated regularly in the project initiated by Yasuda and his friends. And the experience was later extended to Hungary, the Czech Republic, Romania, Poland… and the US, where the American Go Foundation gives Yasuda’s book to teachers who request it and provides additional educational mestudiando-300x200aterials to schools in the belief that teaching Go contributes child development.

Today, Yasuda’s work even serves as a basis for the work of pedagogues with minority children at risk of exclusion in the US, and continues to spread, even without an NGO supporting it, through Asia, Africa, and Europe, exclusively through the work of volunteers offering demonstration lessons to teachers, educators, and cultural promoters worldwide. The simple method he developed for approaching children today is much more than a social project.

What does Go contribute?

As we noted when we tried to understand why so many tech entrepreneurs were big fans of Go,

this ability to withstand frustration, to determine a purpose, sustain it over time and adapt to circumstances to execute it, is what determines the likelihood of success of everyone who wants to turn an idea into a project. And that is exactly what starts when you put your first stone on the board.

atari-300x224That is, in a long game where every move completely transforms the future course of events, children learn something else: responsibility. As we mentioned when we talked about the relationship between Go and language, Takeo Kajiwara (1923-2009), a great professional player who focused his career precisely on “finding the truth among the stones,” wrote about this idea:

Each time you place a stone on the board you are showing something of yourself. It’s not just a piece of slate, shell, or plastic. You have committed to that rock your feelings, your individuality, your power, and once you’ve played there is no way back. Each stone carries a heavy responsibility on your behalf.

estudiando1-150x150Surely most Go players would agree that one of the most fascinating aspects of the game is precisely that combination of challenge and fun with the practice of a well-understood responsibility. The other player is for each “a fact of nature,” someone with whom we play and of whom we may learn, but who can’t be blamed for what we do wrong or for our defeats.

Regardless of how much it physically improves our brain, how much it contributes to building our determination and intuition, Go teaches us how to face an unpredictable world from a position of serenity, to understand the opponent as someone that far from ruining our chances, the better they are, the more they will help us improve our game; Go is also a world in which we understand our gestures as meaningful decisions, as words we say to each other. And all that means something more important than a mental workout. For generations burdened with anguish in the race for results, Go becomes a tool for something completely different: maturing and learning to develop serenity by practicing a fine art.

Translated by Alan Furth from the original in Spanish.

IMGP2042-1024x768 images

“Las Indias” is a transnational community and behind the cooperatives that make up the Las Indias Cooperative Group since 2002. If you want to know more about the cooperatives, their customers and projects, please visit the entrepreneurial activities website (in Spanish).

El Correo de las Indias es el blog colectivo de los socios del
Grupo Cooperativo de las Indias
Gran Vía 48 – 48011 – Bilbao
F-83409656 (SIE) ~ F-85220861 (EAC) ~ F-95712659 (E) ~ G-84082569 (BIE)

(Source: 11/15/2014 – Las Indias in English – An interesting life.)

5th and 6th Dan class in Chinese Go Academy…

Wowh… that is weired (for an European)…

A 5th and 6th Dan class at a Go Academy in Nanning Shi, Guangxi (China): five young and promising Go players were in there. – Tks to House Chuah (whom you can find at Singapore Weiqi Association and SkyGo) for this snap and for sharing. 🙂


Aji’s Quest (cartoon): A “deep & complexe strategy” ends in…

I hate snapbacks (mouse traps)…. or is it (self) atari ? – But I love cartoons.

Aji’s Quest is great for Go Teens + Kids

The drawings can be downloaded textfree
for translation into different languages from the website (see bottom link).


Aji has been playing Go for a whole month… and he still sucks at it!
Can the mysterious Master Tenuki turn him into a champion in one easy lesson?

master_tenuki_sm Aji

(source: Aji’s Quest | page 3)

32nd Rahlstedter Tengen (8th/9th Nov 2014)… Childrens CUP

Steffi Hebsacker (4K) is co-owner/founder of a Go publisher company and one of Europe’s leading intern. sales distributer for Go equipment with her partner Tobias Berben (4D)… settled in Hanseatic City Hamburg (North Germany)
Warum uns Spielen so glücklich macht

Steffi’s personal mission in the Go world is to promote Go for Children education (e.g. using Hand puppets as sympathy figure or ground floor boards); on her own she is still an active tournament player having started with Go in 1988.
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Steffi organized an entry/cost free childrens tournament on Sunday morning, 9th November 2014 aside the 32nd Rahlstedter Tengen tournament… its always impressive and enjoyable to watch kidds playing GO; they have a very natural attitude for taking risks and playing emotionally.
23078ef5bb421490b612ff0c4aa1a39fcbe765d4b872 (1)

2306c7150bd39a15da2c20c182eaabf2f38290bac277 (1)

Have a complete look pls at some other and interesting topics about Kids & GO ! 🙂

Go education in China… interview with Dongfang Li (1P / 9D on KGS) by Daniel Tomé (3D/EGF)

… an interesting interview about GO education in China shortly being published (on 8th Nov) by http://www.eurogotv.com/ (Rec.: The official website is down for now being blocked by the provider because of unjustified spam-accusations.)

Interview with Dongfang Li 1p (aka “gowithwi” 9d on KGS) by Daniel Tomé (3d/EGF)


Daniel Tomé (DT): When did you first learn about Go?
Dongfang Li (DL): I started to learn Go when I was 7 years old.
I became interested in it when I was in school, and later, after studying, I went to Beijing to receive professional training.

DT: Did you know early on that you wanted to become a professional?
DL: No, I didn’t have any concept of what “professional” was at that time.

DT: So it was only later on, when you were already very strong, that you thought maybe you could become a professional.
DL: Yeah.
Actually, even after becoming a stronger player, I still had to focus on school. But I still wanted to play Go, so in the free time of my school life I studied Go, and improved…

DT: Let’s talk a bit about the professional training system. How many kids were there in the Go school you went to?
DL: At that time, in my Go school (in Beijing), there were 100 kids studying Go, wanting to become professionals.

DT: What was the training schedule like?
DL: Every day, we would get up early in the morning, and do some life and death problems; usually we also had games, one in the morning and one in the afternoon; at night, a pro teacher reviewed the games.

DT: Did you study old (ancient) Chinese players (masters)?
DL: No, just contemporary.

DT: So, in the morning you did life and death problems…
DL: We had punishment if we couldn’t do it… Push-ups, we had to do it.

DT: Physical punishment!?
DL: Yes. That is why China became the best. Ha ha.

DT: Did you meet many famous players at your Go school?
DL: Yes, I met many good players when I was living in Beijing; for example, Mi Yuting (he is even younger than me) – we studied together for a year, and we are good friends. Now he became the top player in China.

DT: How were they like in person?
DL: That’s hard to say, different people have different personalities. What they had in common was, they all worked very hard…

DT: Did you study hard too?
DL: Yeah, of course.

DT: Together?
DL: In Beijing we always trained together.
Top players, when they get together, they study many new variations, joseki…

DT: In Japan they study more by themselves, alone.
DL: Individual work, yes.

DT: But in China they study together.
DL: Yes, they study together. I think that is why they are doing better.

DT: In 2010 you passed the pro exam, and became a professional. Tell us about the decisive game – was it close?
DL: Yes. My opponent at that time was stronger than me.

DT: Passing the pro exam was a great achievement, right?
DL: Yeah, for me it’s a great achievement.

DT: Did you celebrate?
DL: Of course (as you can imagine).

DT: What do you think is the main difference between pros and amateurs?
DL: Professional players get more training, and are just eager to get better.

DT: Do you still study Go?
DL: Now I’m in medical school, so I just play on the Internet for fun… I watch some pro games on the Internet, and sometimes I do some life and death.
I don’t have much free time, so it’s harder for me to study.

DT: I’ve watched many of your games, but how would you describe your Go style? (Play for territory, fighting?)
DL: I think it’s a little bit more like… fighting? (What do you think?) I didn’t always play where I wanted to play, I didn’t think much about it…

DT: Let’s talk about the international Go scene. Which country is the strongest, China or Korea?
DL: I think China is now the best, but I can’t predict the future.

DT: But are there now more promising young Chinese players than Koreans?
DL: Of course.

DT: And who do you think is the strongest player today?
DL: Lee Sedol.

DT: What about in China?
DL: Chen Yaoye.

DT: And your favorite player?
DL: Gu Li.

DT: What do you most like about Gu Li? His fighting power, right?
DL: Yes, he is a “killer”. He always fights, and he has a strong sense of shape… he plays fast, with emotion (intuition).

DT: Did you follow the jubango between Gu Li and Lee Sedol?
DL: Yeah, I watched every game. At the time I was studying very hard for the college entrance examination, but still I didn’t miss any game of him.

DT: Was it a big event in China? Were there many people watching the games?
DL: All the games broadcasted on Tygem had more than 1000 people watching; that’s really a large number.

DT: What did you think, was Gu Li inferior, or was it just bad luck?
DL: I think for him, he has already been at the top for many years, so it’s easy for him to adjust and to come back…

DT: But was the result of the match fair? Lee Sedol deserved to win, right?
DL: I don’t know, I still… it’s unbelievable.

DT: Oh, you were expecting Gu Li to win?
DL: Of course.

DT: So you’re disappointed…
DL: No, it’s okay. It’s already past.

DT: Let me ask you about the West. You’ve been to both Europe and the US – what do you think are the main differences between Chinese and European/American players?
DL: In America or in Europe the strong amateur players, they didn’t get pro training, and they are eager to fight.

DT: You’re probably thinking of Ilya Shikshin (“roln111” on KGS), whom you’ve played with a few times before. Do you think he is close to professional strength?
DL: Hmm, not so close, because… actually, now I’m not so strong, and people who want to become professional players are just training hard, and maybe they are better than me. And when I played with him, I got more wins… He still has to make an effort, I think.

DT: You’ve played with other top European/American players. What did you think of Andy Liu?
DL: Yeah, he is strong. (I saw his games in the US Open, I think he got better.)

DT: He is a pro now, under a new system, in the US. You’ve also played against the first European pro, Pavol Lisy (“cheater” on KGS), but he lost quickly.
DF: I remember the game.

DT: So there is a big difference in level… Can we say that Europe is still really behind?
DL: I cannot say, because there might be others who are stronger.

DT: Do you think this new pro system will help improve the level of American/European Go?
DL: Yeah, of course. It just started, and they will get better.

DT: Here’s a question many people want to ask: what’s the best way to get stronger at Go?
DL: To improve, you have to study life and death, and tesuji.
For me, I just watch professional games, and just review, and try to find some new moves. But for the amateur player, as I said, I think it’s better to do some life and death problems, and tesuji, to learn tactics.

DT: You used to play on Tygem a lot, before I introduced you to KGS. But most players in China have never heard of KGS. Can you talk about the difference between these two Go servers?
DL: I don’t know if Tygem started earlier, but they have many top players (the top players in China, Korea, in the world), so they attract a bigger audience… And in China they have so many people already who know about Tygem, so they don’t want to go play on another server.

DT: What can KGS do to attract more players?
DL: Hmm… Can they get more top players?… For example, in Tygem, for important games, they invite pros to review the game during the live broadcast, and many people join… It’s also important for them to add more features, like on Tygem… I think they can do it to attract more people.

DT: You’ve played many times with “kghin” (Chan Chi-Hin) on KGS – do you think he is close to pro level?
DL: He is not so close. I think maybe he needs more training. He is still not that strong a player, he needs more effort to reach that level.

DT: Only a few people can turn pro each year. So I wanted to ask you about all the kids who spend their childhood studying in Go schools to become professionals, but who will never make it.
DL: Do you think it’s cruel?

DT: Maybe it will hurt them in the future. I mean, even for those who make it to pros, it’s hard to live just from Go. So is it worth it to spend so much time…
DL: I think it’s worth it.

DT: Even for the kids who can’t become professionals?
DL: That’s hard to say… For me, I would say that it was good. But the situation is not as bad as you think, because they can also make a living, for example, teaching Go.
And in the process of studying Go they make many friends and, even though they didn’t go to college, they still learn a lot from this process, and I think many of them get even more pay than normal people.

DT: Okay, that’s good. So, here’s a more philosophical question: what did you learn from Go?—Or, what attracts you in Go?
DL: What I learned… I learned a lot, and made many friends… Go is something I’m really interested in, and addicted to. It teaches me to be patient… I can stand, and just think, and not feel upset…. and I think even more important is that I really made many good friends like you.

DT: Ah, thanks (and likewise)! You know, there is a Chinese Go proverb that says, use Go to meet friends.
DL: Yeah.

DT: Okay, I think we can end on that note. Any final advice for European/American players?
DL: I think for the good amateur players, it’s better for them to come to China or Korea…

DT: So if they want to become really strong, they have to go to Asia…
DL: I think so, because the system here is very good for them to become better. And I think in America or in Europe, they just study more on the Internet, I don’t think they have Go clubs and pro teachers for them to get strong?

DT: Maybe these recent changes, the new pro system, will help…
DL: Oh, but I think it’s a long process.

DT: Yes, it will take a long time, I agree… Okay, Dongfang, thanks for the interview.
DL: Thank you.

Daniel Tomé 3d

Three games of Dongfang Li as white he all won by resigning of his opponents…

  • Dongfang Li (1PD) vs. Ilya Shikshin (7D/EGF) on 21st June 2014 (KGS game)

Ilya is 7 Dan EG, and three times champion of Europe in 2007, 2010, 2011, and five times champion of Russia in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2012.

gowithwi-roln11121-06-2014.sgf (7.6 KB)

For your individual review / Go training pick up the SGF here:  Eidogo | OGS

  • Dongfang Li (1PD) vs. Pavol Lisy (1PD/8D KGS) on 25th June 2014 (KGS game)

Pavol became professional in 2014 of the new European Pro GO league, and currently is studying Go in Beijing. (September 2014 to March 2015).

gowithwi-cheater-25062014-1.sgf (5.3 KB)

For your individual review / Go training pick up the SGF here:  Eidogo | OGS

  • Dongfang Li (1PD) vs. Chsan Chi-Hin (8D/KGS) on 7th Oct 2014 (KGS game)

Chsan Chi-Hin was born in Hong Kong on Dec 1997 and has been learning GO since mid-October 2005. He is the representative player of Hong Kong/China for the coming 36th World Amateur GO Championship to be held in Thailand in 2015, he is winner of the 14th Hong Kong Amateur GO Championship which was held on 8-9 November 2014.

gowithwi-kghin07102014-1.sgf (16.2 KB)

For your individual review / Go training pick up the SGF here:  Eidogo | OGS

About teaching GO in Korea and USA… Kwon Kapyong 8P (Lee Sedol’s teacher) visits Feng Yun Go School

What about teaching GO in Korea ? – Here an interesting insightabout GO and comparison with Western teaching…


Kwon Kapyong 8P, Lee Sedol’s Teacher, Visits Feng Yun Go School (short form)

reported by Paul Matthews (c/o [Go Tourney Ratings][1])

(Sunday November 2, 2014) – Students at the Feng Yun Go School got a special treat last month when [Kwon Kapyong][2] paid a visit. “Among other accomplishments, Mr. Kwon was [Lee Sedol][3]’s teacher,” reports Paul Matthews on the school’s website. “In fact, almost 20% of all Korean professional players were taught in his school.” Matthews reports that Feng Yun 9P “had a long talk with Mr. Kwon, and offered to help in his efforts to promote go in the United States.” They also discussed differences between teaching young students in Korea and in the United States. Parents in east Asian countries are willing to support their child in putting a lot of time into go study because there are more professional career opportunities there, American parents want to use go as an educational tool to train critical and logical thinking, problem solving, concentration, and good learning habits. The October 3 visit included a friendship match between six of Mr. Kwon’s students and the Parsippany students. Accompanying Mr. Kwon were Kim Young Ran, CEO of the Kwonkapyong International Baduk Academy, Joseph Sung, translator, and Kim Dae Yol, a very strong amateur player and go club entrepreneur in New Jersey.


Kwon Kapyong 8p visits Feng Yun’s Parsippany class

(10/03/2014) – On October 3, [Kwon Kapyong][4] 8-dan professional from Korea visited Feng Yun’s go class in Parsippany, New Jersey. Among other accomplishments, Mr. Kwon was [Lee Sedol][5]’s teacher; in fact, almost 20% of all Korean professional players were taught in his school. Accompanying Mr. Kwon were Kim Young Ran, CEO of the Kwonkapyong International Baduk Academy, Joseph Sung, translator, and Kim Dae Yol, a very strong amateur player and go club entrepreneur in New Jersey.

Perspectives on Teaching Go

(Kweon Kapyong (권갑용 | Source: Sensei's Library)

(Kweon Kapyong (권갑용 | Source: Sensei’s Library)

Feng Yun had a long talk with Mr. Kwon, and offered to help in his efforts to promote go in the United States. Feng Yun and Mr. Kwon also discussed differences between teaching young students in Korea and in the United States.

Everyone should know that there are more professional career opportunities for go players in east Asian countries such as Korea, China and Japan, than there are in the United States. Accordingly, parents in east Asian countries are willing to support their child in putting a lot of time into go study, and serious students may study 40 hours or more a week. In comparison, **American parents want to use go as an educational tool** to train critical and logical thinking, problem solving, concentration, and good learning habits; many hope that their child will win some distinction as an amateur player before going to college, and of course, playing go with other kids is a good social activity. For Americans, learning to play go is one of many desirable extracurricular activities, and most families divide their child’s available time to pursue several different ones. A central challenge for a professional go teacher in the United States is to enable students to make progress given the limited time commitments of the students.

Mr. Kwon told Feng Yun that he has about 200 students in Korea. Of these, 50 are professionals who study and train every day, all day long; 50 are inseis (strong amateurs who hope to become a professional) who study from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. every day; the rest of his students come to class at least three times a week. Mr. Kwon was amazed that many of Feng Yun’s students reach a high amateur dan level in just a few years, if they just attend class for a couple of hours once a week. Feng Yun explained that part of her formula is summer workshops where students can concentrate on go exclusively and surge forward; another part is to focus always on just what students really need to know so that every hour counts. Feng Yun also noted that creating a competition environment is important so that students can compare themselves with the other students and develop healthy rivalries: if a student is falling behind, then he/she is motivated to study harder to catch up.

Feng Yun told Mr. Kwon that, “*I do realize the cultural differences between West and East. Instead of training world champions, I adjust my goal and focus on teaching students to go as far on this road as they are willing and able.*” Basic questions for the students (and parents) are, “What level do you want to achieve?” and “How much time and effort are you willing to invest in studying this game?”

Kwon Kapyong 8p, Feng Yun 9p, and Joseph Shun are standing; Kim Dae Yol and one of Mr. Kwon’s stronger students are seated in the foreground.

Korean visitors together with the Parsippany class.

Left to right, boards 6 and 5 are in the foreground, with boards 2 and 1 behind them.

Six of Mr. Kwon’s students played a friendship match with the Parsippany students. (Four top boards; board 4 is in the foreground.)

(Source: [Feng Yun Go School][7] / [AGA][8] (American Go Association – E-Journal (News))

About Feng Yun

Feng Yun is a professional weiqi player who has taught thousands of students in the United States since 2002. She is one of only three women ever to earn a professional 9 dan rank, the highest possible, and was a member of the China National Weiqi Team for two decades. Feng Yun was women’s world champion in 1995, and has won national championships in China and in the United States.

Feng Yun started learning go in the Henan province of China when she was 9 years old, and became a professional player in 1979 at the age of 13. She was selected for the China National Weiqi Team in 1982, and retired from the National Team only after emigrating to the United States.

Please see the following for more biographical information.

  • [Chronology of Feng Yun’s career path][9]
  • [Her best performances][10]
  • [Early career pictures][11]
  • [Pictures with other go masters][12]
(Source: [Feng Yun Go School][13])

[1]: http://www.accelrat.com/
[2]: http://senseis.xmp.net/?KweonKapYong
[3]: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Se-dol
[4]: http://senseis.xmp.net/?KweonKapYong
[5]: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Se-dol
[6]: http://senseis.xmp.net/?KweonKapYong
[7]: http://fengyungoschool.com/?fygsnews/KwonKapyong/kk_parsippany_2014-10-03.htm
[8]: http://www.usgo.org/news/2014/11/kwon-kapyong-8p-lee-sedols-teacher-visits-feng-yun-go-school/
[9]: http://fengyungoschool.com/fengyun/career_path.htm
[10]: http://fengyungoschool.com/fengyun/best_p_alt.htm
[11]: http://fengyungoschool.com/fengyun/early_pictures.htm
[12]: http://fengyungoschool.com/fengyun/gomaster_alt.htm
[13]: http://fengyungoschool.com/?fygsnews/KwonKapyong/kk_parsippany_2014-10-03.htm

Havanna: Cuban and Mexican Kids Get Together for Go…

How to attract GO to girls ?

It has to be “very girlish” so it seems…. a group of teens from Havana (Cuba) playing GO during a tournament…

Wearing promo textile like a GO Pro…

training media competences during the tournament…

Cuba-Mexico Tournament 2014…

Cuban and Mexican Kids Get Together for Go in Havana
(original published on Friday, 25 April 2014 09:18)

Cuba and Mexico held their first primary school go exchange this April at the Cuban Go Academy in the Eduardo Saborit Sports Complex in Havana. Five Mexican and seven Cuban primary shool students competed in a four-round Swiss System on the 14th and 15th (Monday and Tuesday), also finding time for a game of soccer on Monday and a beach house visit on Tuesday. Then after an instructional class, game commentaries, and a social event, the exchange concluded with a 13 x 13 pair go tournament on April 18 (Friday) in which the Mexicans took Cuban partners. The individual Swiss System, which made the Tuesday sports news on Cuban TV, was won by Carlos Manuel Alfonso Basabe (Cuba, age 9) while Diego Armando Luciano Cortes (Mexico, age 7) finished second. In the pair competition, Carlos teamed up with Daniela Luciano Cortes (Mexico, age 9) to take first place. The entire event appeared on Cuban TV again when sports commentator Yimmy Castillo covered it in his Sunday Pulso Deportivo (Sports Pulse) program.

Participants at the 2014 Cuba-Mexico primary school go exchange.

The Mexican players were accompanied by parents and by Siddhartha Avila (Program Director, Mexican Youth Go Community / Univ. of Michigan The Cultural Ambassador Go Program / GCAIP co-founder from Pipiolo Elementary School), who teaches go to primary school children in Mexico. During the five days, these grown-ups and their Cuban counterparts discussed topics of mutual interest, such as the educational systems in the two countries and methods of teaching go. The exchange grew out of a 2013 visit to Cuba by go players from the United States, who then met Siddhartha at the 2013 U.S. Go Congress and told him about the **Cuban Go Academy’s program for children of primary-school age**. Siddhartha contacted the Cubans, and the idea of an exchange was born. In organizing the exchange, the Cuban Go Academy obtained support from the Mexican ‘Pipiolo’ Center for Primary School Educational and Artistic Research, as well as from Cuba’s National Institute for Sports, Physical Education and Recreation (INDER) and from Cubadeportes (Cuba Sports).
This go exchange was the first of its kind in Latin America, and the organizers described it as a great success. In future years the Cuban Go Academy hopes to expand it to include more Latin American countries where go is taught to children. In the more immediate future, they are preparing for a ten-day visit in May by twenty Spanish-speaking Japanese players representing Japan’s Sociedad de Intercambio Internacional de Go (Society for International Go Exchange), and in the more distant future, they dream of holding a World Amateur Go Championship in Havana. (Source: The International Go Federation)


(Picture Source: Gimnasio de Go 圍棋 wéiqí, 囲碁 igo, 바둑 baduk)


Mexico: 1st Torneo Internacional Interclubes sub-18 (07/27/2014)

Some more pics (from Mexico) documenting the 1st Torneo Internacional Interclubes sub-18Las Tres Águilas” have taken place on 27th July 2014 via the Online Go  Server (OGS).

Poster… with OGS URL for the online based tournament
158945f72df8ca7f95e29dd83ad8f4f5dd952240e551 1590965b76776fd813c627616da4f6515b55c11df9da 15911246bb0e120b85c265c54fa399305674dbd19c0d 1592ca9e79768d9bc886727d08c14d263521d6cee435
Results… congrats to Proano Joaqin (1st), Mena Mateo (2nd), Mimiza Ruiz Benja (3rd) and all the other participants


(Source: Facebook – Gimnasio de Go 圍棋 wéiqí, 囲碁 igo, 바둑 baduk)

Mexico-Chile-Ecuador Youth Tourneys… Iberoamerican Online Go Tournament

great… and congrats to OGS – Online Go Server (www.online-go.com) !

(Source: American Go E-Journal – http://www.usgo.org/news/2014/09/mexico-chile-ecuador-youth-tourneys-a-first/ )

Mexico-Chile-Ecuador Youth Tourneys a First
Wednesday September 17, 2014

(GO Server OGS / Photo: kids from Gimnasio de Go enjoy themselves playing against Chile.)

“Go is getting interesting in Latin America,” reports Mexican organizer Siddhartha Avila (Program Director, Mexican Youth Go Community / Univ. of Michigan The Cultural Ambassador Go Program / GCAIP co-founder from Pipiolo Elementary School), “we’ve been organizing online tournaments for kids with Chile and Ecuador, and they have been a great success. I’ll be at the Iberoamerican Go Tournament in Quito, Ecuador (Oct 9-12) and I hope to meet some of the other organizers in person. We held the very first children’s online match between Chile and Mexico on June 28th, with the participation of twenty children from both countries! We used the OGS Go Server for this match. Go servers like KGS, OGS, IGS** are widely used for tournaments or matches between countries in Latin America, and locally, the biggest of them being the Iberoamerican Online Go Tournament organized by Federación Iberoamericana de Go, its 15th edition last year drew more than 100 players.”

For the Chile-Mexico match, there where kids from 5 different schools in Punta Arenas, Chile: Colegio Luterano, Escuela Pedro Pablo Lemaitre, Escuela Juan Williams, Escuela Contardi, Escuela Manuel Bulnes. The match was organized by Club de Go Aonken and their teacher, Sebastián Montiel. On the Mexican side, all the players were from Escuela de Arte Pipiolo and Gimnasio de Go in Mexico City. “It was a great experience, that fills us with joy and enthusiasm to continue sharing go with children of our city, and around the world,” said Montiel

“We’ve had online matches with other schools in the US and Canada before,” said Avila, “especially with Peter Freedman’s students (Portland, OR) and in tourneys like Tiger’s Mouth, the School Team Tournament by the AGHS, or the AGA’s NAKC. We were glad to receive Sebastián’s invitation to play the Chile-Mexico match, and we have in mind inviting more countries where we know there are go programs, or go is taught to children. Ecuador, Venezuela, Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Brasil and Cuba, all come to mind,” adds Avila. Mexico won the matches 8 – 2, full results, and pictures, can be seen here. A report on the first Chile-Ecuador-Mexico match will run in next week’s E-J. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.

Here on OGS the games being played on 28th June 2014:

  1. Matías Salinas, Colegio Luterano v/s Diego A. Luciano, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  2. Esteban Orellana, Colegio Luterano v/s Leonardo P. Valdovinos, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  3. Maximiliano Lobos, Escuela Pedro Pablo Lemaitre v/s Mateo Nava, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  4. Anastasia Sanhueza, Escuela Juan Williams v/s Diego Ali Manjarrez, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  5. Maria Trinidad Villanueva, Colegio Luterano v/s Axel Fematt, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  6. Joaquín Oyarzo, Escuela Contardi v/s Sebastián Bañuelos, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  7. Amira Burgos, Escuela Contardi v/s Thadeé Márquez, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  8. Mauricio Ojeda, Escuela Manuel Bulnes v/s Humberto Zamora, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  9. Aylin Ojeda, Escuela Manuel Bulnes v/s Fernanda Zamora, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:
  10. Maria Trinidad Villanueva, Colegio Luterano v/s Emilio Bañuelos, Escuela de Arte Pipiolo:

Some more pictures… (all images from here)

1575fabe429311e76a3a32f03f831d5e08c1821b7929 1576202702eaeb674d6bd757b858fa25207283244e44
15779c505c5e272bbab797cd2e63dbff50760ec93fc1 15787e461bab8376724127120addf79143601a245a7e
1579556ddecff838006dc103658243ddd3340273c393 158029be68e2aef38ff92184394ccff0fe1cff0debf1

The Pleasurable Way to a Superior Mind (by Milton N. Bradley)

Tks to Avavt (4k/OGS) sharing this interesting info. As Avavt mentioned, I can follow her to believe that Go at least can help in improving one’s ability to remember & recognize patterns. 


© 2004 Milton N. Bradley


Milton N. Bradley with Clayton Wilkie assisting, giving an outdoor demo of Go at Coindre Hall, Huntington, N.Y. during the Huntington Fall Festival, 1995


○  Rules as simple as checkers. Strategy more profound than chess.
○   No different piece moves to master.
○   No fixed starting setup. Each game uniquely structured by the players themselves.
○  Integral handicap system allows even players of widely different ability to enjoy truly competitive games.
○   Suitable for age 3 – Ph.D.

  • NO “LUCK” OR CHANCE. Just outsmart your opponent to win.

○   Profound Strategy. (Like football, many different plays from the same initial “set”.)
○   Dazzling Tactical Magic. (Like Judo, use the opponent’s strength against him.)
○   Features pincer attacks, ambushes, feints, diversions, traps, and “airborne” invasions behind enemy lines.

  • ALWAYS CHALLENGING. Every game different, never routine or boring..


  • Creates an enjoyable, mentally stimulating environment in which even very young children learn how to:

○  Objectively appraise a competitive situation.
○   Identify what’s important and what’s not.
○  Evaluate the feasible alternatives.
○   Recall/apply pertinent facts and techniques.
○   Develop appropriate alternative strategy and tactics.
○   Calculate the value and risks of each alternative.
○   Prioritize them.<p
○   Make and implement decisions.
○   Observe the outcome, cope with the consequences, and then
○   Repeat the decision making cycle, as appropriate.


○   Long term planning succeeds, “instant gratification” fails.
○   Greed is counter-productive. The opponent must always get his due.
○   No simplistic, fixed plan can succeed against competent opposition. A balanced, flexible approach is the only possible route to victory.
○   Rote memory is useful but insufficient.
○   Deep positional analysis, understanding and sound judgment dominate even the best tactics. No “quick kill” is possible against competent opposition.



  • Overall strategic judgment and patient development dominate tactics.
  • Investment for the future is generally superior to emphasis on immediate profit, but ultimate success almost always requires a carefully balanced set of tradeoffs between both objectives.
  • The game that taught Japan the strategies that have moved them into leadership in such fields as automobiles and semiconductors!



In his regular column “The Empty Board” in the American Go Journal, Vol. 34, #3, Fall 2000, William S. Cobb reports:

“Last June (I visited) Japan to participate in a symposium on the educational benefits of teaching Go in schools. ……. On this trip I discovered that the Japanese have become seriously interested in the possibilities of using Go as a therapy for people with mental problems.”

And Cobb goes on to say:

“In recent years, Dr. Kaneko Mitsuo, a Japanese neurosurgeon with an international reputation, has been working with older people suffering from senile dementia. Using PET scans he has shown that there is substantial area of the right brain that begins to atrophy in people who suffer from dementia. This turns out to be essentially the same part of the brain that is most active when engaging in musical activities and in playing Go. To research this further, Dr. Kaneko has been teaching Go to patients in the beginning stages of dementia. (He) is now convinced that learning to play Go can reverse the development of dementia in virtually all patients in the beginning stages of the disease. Of course, this does not apply to Alzheimer’s, which is still an incurable condition, but it does work for common dementia.”

Other recent medical research indicates that older individuals who vigorously and consistently exercise their REASONING abilities also have a far lower incidence of Alzheimer’s Diseasethan those who do not!

And, as you may have gleaned from the foregoing, for this purpose the 4000 year old game of Go is far superior to any other known mechanism! Why? Because playing Go regularly is not only enjoyable but also results in intense exercise and integration of both left and right brain function to a degree not otherwise achievable!

The number of Alzheimer’s cases in the US has been estimated at 4 million in a total population of about 280 million. But because Alzheimer’s is essentially found only in the elderly, the true basis for comparison is really no more than half that number, or 140 million at most, yielding an expectation of Alzheimer’s incidence in the general population on the order of approximately 3%. Given that there are currently approximately 400 recognized Go professionals in the world, and that there have been many, many thousands in the period from 1612 when Go was institutionalized in Japan under the rule of Shogun Tokugawa until the present time, if their incidence of Alzheimer’s disease was the same as that of the general population there should be at least 6 current sufferers in their ranks, and a long history of those who contracted Alzheimer’s in the past. But in fact there have never been even a single one!

This was validated by the following email I received on Monday June 14, 2004 in response to my enquiry on this subject:

Dear Mr. Bradley,

To our knowledge, there have been no professional go players who have ever suffered from Alzheimer’s. In a note President of the World Bridge Federation recently gave me are put these lines: “Very serious medical studies carried out by universities in California have proved that groups of bridge players, for example, are much less likely to develop Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s than non-players.” It appears that the same goes with Go. There have been published since a couple of years books by Japanese neurologists regarding Go and mental health of the aged persons, all of which have proved positive effects on aged go players. It is related to the function of “right brain”.

Riichi Yamamoto
Advisor, Overseas Dept
Nihon Ki-in

(Source: Milt’s GO Page)

When to start teaching little kidds in GO ?

Many parents, dads and mums who play on their own Go ask the seriously question: “When is it the right time to bring very little kidds into contact with the game?

The answer: As different examples show in Asia its no problem to bring kidds 3+ in kindergarden into contact with GO. Naturally they learn it very differently from adults or teenagers do. Its a very playfully way. And it all depends on the skills of the teacher.

I give you a link to infos about the “teaching method” of Japanese GO master Yasuda Yasutoshi (Japanese 9Pro Dan, born 1964) who is promoting GO teaching for kidds worldwide under the headline “GO as Communication: The educational and therapeutical value of GO“.

He wrote a book, too you can buy at Slate & Shell Press. (Rec.: It is given cost free from the AGA (American Go Association) for Go teachers who like to use it in schools/kindergardens.)
Go As Communication

Here a free PDF extract about Yasuda’s method, very informative and enjoyable to read:

Same available in French as “Le go, un outil de communication” (see Amazon)

Yasuda is a very nice guy, here playing with kidds a simultan game in Marseille… (source: Go Club Valreas)

Shortly had been founded the European Go Teacher Association (EGoTA). Official website: http://www.goteachers.eu

They had been a three days qualification workshop for Go teachers (beside the Kido Cup)  going in Hanseatic City Hamburg from 7th till 9th June 2014, where I live. Here some pics…

Go at school as a good future in Germany with the new qualified Go teachers… congrats !

The EGoTa is getting heavily support from Korea, e.g. the participants get an official Certificate from Myungji University. Prof. Jeong Soo-hyun (9 Dan) gave a lecture about “The Theory and Methods of Baduk Education“.
(You find an interview with Prof. Soon-Hyun about “Management Wisdom from GO” here.)

Same In-Seong Hwang (8Dan) gave a lecture, who is National Go pedagogue of French National Go Assication and Go teacher of Swiss Go Association.

I know Inseong personally and I think, he is a good address to contact him personally as he knows very well European culture. You can catch him easily on his Facebook profile to get some concrete answers about your questions from a GO Pro.

Many good things with Go are going in Europe, so I see it… it gives hope that more and more kidds get in contact in kindergardens, schools, Universities… nothing bad with it, isnt ? 🙂

Asia: Female Go teachers for kindergarden kidds

The very little of Kindergarden ages have in Asia very caring female Go teachers…

… and specific teaching material.

(Source: @ Facebook: さくら通り親子囲碁交流会 子育て×囲碁)

Busy Mums dont need to stop with playing GO…

Busy Mums with two kidds dont need to stop playing GO…. 🙂


Asia: GO education in school class nowadays (pics gallery)…

So goes GO education in Asia in school class nowadays…
(Rec.: all pics from the new Facebook page “Art gogo“)

10636039_10152195550297541_3957086573420107052_n 10469408_10152084165327541_2246932092232779187_n













35th WAGC (World Amateur Go Championship)…

Some snaps from the 35th WAGC (World Amateur Go Championship)… the two youngest players seen there have been Rafif Shidqi from Indonesia and Nhat Minh Vo from Vietnam.

(Source: 23rd July 2014, InterGoFed – Intern. Go Federation @ Facebook)

(Source: 23rd July 2014, InterGoFed – Intern. Go Federation @ Facebook)

Congrats to the winner of the WAGC 2014: Yitien Chan (Chinese Taipei) … (Source: 9th July 2014 – http://ranka.intergofed.org/?p=11481)

Yitien Chan (Chinese Taipei) snatched victory in the 35th World Amateur Go Championship, overtaking Korea by a single tie-break point. Chinese Taipei take home the trophy for the first time ever, and this is also the first time since 1986 (when Hong Kong won) that the winner was not one of the Big Three (China, Japan and Korea). Read more in the Bulletin of the International Go Federation here.


training programme of the GoAndMath Academy: McCormick Elementary Students Learn Go (And Math)

Accidently I fell over this interesting training programme of the GoAndMath Academy. Here the infos I found in the E-Journal / on the website of the AGA (American GO Association) being published in July 2014…

McCormick Elementary Students Learn Go (And Math)

Author: Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

(07-29-2014) Students at McCormick Elementary, in Chicago, IL, had the opportunity recently to learn to play go from Xinming Simon Guo 2d, a licensed math teacher and founder of the GoAndMath Academy. “Students were

playing a simple game during the class, blissfully unaware that they were also working on math skills as they put every stone on the board and counted the result at the end of the game,” Guo told the E-Journal

At McCormick, the go class is part of the Chinese Artists-In-Residency Program, co-sponsored by Confucius Institute in Chicago (CIC) and GoAndMath Academy.

The Chinese language teachers at McCormick — where 99.5% of the students are hispanic and 50% are English Language Learners – Ms. Yeh and Ms. Huang, heard about the go program during the professional workshop organized by CIC last year. “Go is an ideal tool to achieve the goal of our Chinese curriculum–to enhance students’ understanding of Chinese culture, and reinforce their learning of language skills,” says Guo. “During the entire 2013-2014 school year, the go program offered more than 130 learning sections to more than 4500 students in Chicago public schools,” said Jane Lu, the director of CIC and coordinator of CPS Chinese World Language Program.

Photo: Guo demonstrates the secrets of holding the go stone.

Photo: Guo demonstrates the secrets of holding the go stone.


“Go is not just a simple game,” says Guo. “Research by GoAndMath Academy reveals that there exists a hidden natural connection between math and go. Students can experience math concepts without even noticing them. More specifically, go helps students develop number sense, and three domains in Common Core standards: Counting and Cardinality; Operations and Algebraic Thinking; and Number and Operations in Base Ten. GoAndMath Academy designed the educational go program, which is appropriate for Pre-K through eighth grade, is aligned with the common core standards, and can be played with peers in school or around the world. This fantastic game combines math, science, art, and competition, as well as ancient oriental philosophy and culture. Go requires the highest level of critical thinking. It cultivates the abilities of observing, reflecting, imagining, reasoning, innovating, and decision-making,” says Guo.

(Source: 07/2014 – [AGA – USGO.org][2])

Xinming’s YT Channel: Weiqi /Go game @ Hyde Park Christian Reformed Church

You can [follow Xinming on Twitter][4] or write him an [email to goandmath@gmail.com][5] directly.

[1]: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Goandmath-Academy/146418545477774
[2]: http://www.usgo.org/news/2014/07/mccormick-elementary-students-learn-go-and-math/
[3]: https://www.youtube.com/user/simonguoxm/videos
[4]: https://twitter.com/simonguoxm
[5]: mailto:goandmath@gmail.com

video: World Youth Championship 2013 (under 16)…

  enjoyable to watch:

World Youth Championship 2013 (under 16) – round 1/board 2…

Hikaru-No-Go… Go Boom in Japan

A boom started in Japan when kidds and teenagers watched the Anime Hikaru-No-Go (based on a Manga series).

The kidds became attraced to GO heavily… and they play very tough

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