American Go E-Journal » Latin America

New Mexican Go Program for Kids

Thursday January 5, 2017

DSC_0333“Now there are two elementary schools in México City where go is part of the curriculum,” reports Siddhartha Avila, Mexican Youth Go Coordinator. “Pipiolo elementary has had an active go program since 2008 when  Principal Marcela Zepeda first envisioned the educational benefits that go offers at early ages. All the top youth players in México have studied or study at her private K-6 school.” Now Colegio Serapio Rendón, is adding a program too. “I was contacted by Principals Gloria Pimentel and Dulce Pimentel,” says Avila,  “they were looking for an instructor to implement a serious go program at their K-6 private school.  We started with one hour a week for all grades, back in September. We ran a successful 13×13 tournament for 3rd to 6th graders on December 6th. The 1st Torneo Escolar de Go drew 34 students, playing 5 rounds. There was excellent coordination between the directors, teachers and staff; the schedule ran promptly, the students behaved well and played with great concentration.”   The school tournament ended with prizes for the top 7 places, as well as a fighting spirit prize. Everybody recieved  participation diplomas. “I’m glad we’ve found an activity where we can transmit love for knowledge, this helps kids’ development and critical thinking, their response to the game surpassed our expectations” says Gloria Pimentel.

“I want to thank Thomas Hsiang and the Nihon Kiin directors, pros and staff for their support so that I could take part at The North American Go Instructors’ Workshop last October in Tokyo,” says Avila. “The workshop encouraged us to fully implement go as a part of a school curriculum with a long term perspective at Colegio Serapio Rendón. With the connection between the Mexican Go Association, the Iwamoto North American Go Foundation, and the Nihon Kiin,  there is a perfect opportunity to build valuable networks and develop further go education projects. Winner’s report Torneo Escolar: 1st place: Saúl Alejo; 2nd place: Valeria González; 3rd place: Alejandro Vera; 4th place: Rodrigo García; 5th place: César Gael Muñoz; 6th place: Shapdi Bernal; 7th place: Ximena Mora; Fighting spirit: Ana Castro. – Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor.  Photo by Siddhartha Avila

 

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Mark Your Calendar: 2017 Go Events

Thursday December 29, 2016

Cuba: As previously reported, Cuba will host a International Conference of Mind Sports in May 2017. For those interested 2016.12.28_-cuba_tourism_photo_of_a_streetin participating beyond just joining in on the competitions, the call for papers to present a workshop is open until January 31. In addition, I-Dared Travels has developed a program that includes the conference and three additional days for traveling and getting to know a bit of Eastern Cuba. Click here for details.

Australia: The third Australian Go Congress has been announced for September 28 through October 1, 2017 in Sydney. The Australian Go Championships will be the central event at the Congress. In addition, a one day ‘kyu’ tournament will enable younger players to take part and enjoy the experience of being part of a major international event. The organizing committee is also planning other events including Pair Go and Lightning Go, with details to be released in the coming months.

Also coming up in 2017: European Go Congress 2017, Canadian Open 2017, Osaka Go Camp/Japan Go Congress and the US Go Congress. More details here.

 

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Go at the Biblioteca de México

Sunday December 18, 2016

When Biblioteca de México La Ciudadela, one of the most iconic public libraries in México City, celebrated its 70th 2016.12.11_Biblioteca de México1anniversary on November 26, go was part of the festivities. In addition to a go exhibition where the public could get a glimpse of what the game is about — watch a video here  – there was a children’s tournament on December 4th, where 28 kids from 4 2016.12.11_Biblioteca de Méxicoto 12 years old played on 9×9 boards in a four round tournament. A special thanks goes to Karla Consuegra, Subdirector of Information Services at Biblioteca de México, who has played a great role in supporting implementing go activities at the public library.
Winners report, top 5:
1st- Lia Sánchez; 2nd- Syd Espinosa; 3rd- Livier Sánchez; 4th- Jazhiel Martínez; 5th- Fedra Alcántara

- Siddhartha Avila, Youth Coordinator, Mexican Go Association and Latin American correspondent for the E-Journal

 

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Categories: Latin America,Youth
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Chile Repeats as ORION Champion

Monday December 12, 2016

Chile won the Latin American ORION U18 Team Tournament for the second consecutive year. The tournament was played2016.12.11_orion-tourney on November 26-27 on the Online Go Server and drew 11 teams of three players each from Chile, México, Ecuador and Venezuela. This is the third edition of the annual event.

Results (top three places):
1. CHILE: Benjamín Mimiza, Matías Salinas, Fernando Gallardo
2. MÉXICO: Diego A. Luciano, Mateo Nava, Bruno Michaca
3. VENEZUELA: Abel Pérez, Angel Rengifo, Iverson Rosales
More info here.

- Siddhartha Avila, Latin American correspondent

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Categories: Latin America,Youth
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Perez Wins Latin American Youth Tourney

Wednesday December 7, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-12-07 at 5.36.40 PMAbel Perez, of Venezuela, took top honors  in the Liga youth tourney, held on OGS. The event is an annual tournament league for players under the age of 18 from all over Latin America. Liga started this year in April and concluded in November; 7 rounds were played each month. There were 24 players from Venezuela, México, Chile and Ecuador. Some games were reviewed by Ignacio Iglesis, a 2 dan go streamer for the Spanish speaking community, on his youtube channel Estudiando Go con Ini. The final matches in round 7 were very competitive as 4 countries had at least one player at the top boards, the winners were: 1st place- Abel Pérez, Venezuela; 2nd place: Leonardo Valdovinos, México; 3rd place: Benjamín Mimiza, Chile; 4th place: Joaquín Proaño, Ecuador; 5th place: Lilian Zavala, México.  See full results here.

“The dedication and motivation of the 3 chilean players that took part at the league inspired other kids to become more engaged with go, and it’s very likely that we will have 10 players for next years’ league,” says  Sebastián Montiel, Chilean go teacher at Club de Go Aonken. “This was the first time that we organized a tournament as a league system for Latin American youth, and it was quite a great success.” Co- organizer Diego Albuja, Ecuadorian go teacher at Academia de Go, told the Journal: ” I’m delighted that the league tournament concluded so satisfyingly, it depended not only on the guidance of the go instructors, but also on the commitment and will to participate of the young players, this indicates to us as organizers that there is great potential for the youth go scene in Latin America. With this league tournament a very active player in Ecuador, Joaquín Proaño leaves the youth division as he turned 18, and we are glad to see he will continue his path at go as an amateur player.”

“All our players had a rich and fun experience making connections with opponents from the Latin American region,” says Siddhartha Avila, Mexican Go teacher at Dojo de Go. “Leonardo Valdovinos played the game for the top place,  even though it was intense and he came in 2nd,  he learned a lot from it. Another highlight was Lilian Zavala, as there are few female players we are proud to see that she continues getting to the top places in local and regional tournaments. These kinds of online tournaments for youth are relatively new for the countries in our region, but play a key role for the development of go. Our event joins the efforts of other Latin American tournaments, like the recent 1st Pandanet Go Latin American Team Championship  which kicked off with 10 teams on November 20th, or the annual online tournament “Torneo Iberoamericano de Go por Internet” which was held for the 18th time this year, with a total of 92 registered players between almost all the countries affiliated with the Iberoamerican Go Federation . -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor, with Siddhartha Avila.  Photo: Club members of Chile’s Club de Go Aonken, in the computer lab at Escuela Juan Williams.

 

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Cuba to Host International Conference of Mind Sports in May 2017

Tuesday December 6, 2016

With Cuba in world headlines in the wake of the death of Fidel Castro comes the news that the island nation will host a 2016.11.30_cuba-conferenceInternational Conference of Mind Sports in May 2017. The event runs May 3-6 and is hosted by the University of Camagüey and the National Institute of Sports, Physical Education and Recreation. There will be a go competition in addition to the presentation of scientific papers. Those interested in attending may contact the program organizing committee President, Dr. C. Lázaro A. Bueno Pérez, at lazaro.bueno@reduc.edu.cu. The University has asked Michelle Cohen’s travel agency to facilitate travel for the conference; details on her website here  and a brochure on the conference is here.”

“This will be a great opportunity to play go at an international event and to see something of Cuba,” says Bob Gilman, AGA Executive VP who traveled to Cuba in 2013 and 2015. ” I enjoyed seeing Camaguey on my 2015 trip. Regulations on travel to Cuba by US citizens have liberalized but are still complex. I would recommend checking the status of these regulations sometime next year after it has become clear what the next administration will be doing as regards Cuba travel.”

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Categories: Latin America
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2017 Mind Sports Conference in Cuba to include Go

Monday July 18, 2016

A go competition will be part of the International Conference of Mind Sports which will be held in Camaguey, Cuba May 3-6, 2017. The program will also include academic papers on Mind Sports games. It is sponsored by the University of Camaguey. Professor Lazaro Bueno Pérez, who attended the 2015 Go Congress in St. Paul, is the lead organizer. The city of Camaguey, founded in 1514, is one of Cuba’s leading cities, and the Historic Center of Camaguey is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. “I visited Camaguey in 2015 and very much enjoyed it,” says Bob Gilman, AGA Executive VP. “It’s full both of history and of present day activity.” Go players from other countries will be welcome at the conference. You can find more information here.

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Categories: Latin America
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Mexican Go Congress Breaks Records

Wednesday June 29, 2016

IMG_2831“The 3rd Mexican Go Congress turned out to be a huge success,” reports Mingming Stephanie Yin 1P. “The event was held June 18th-20th at the Tlatelolco Cultural Center in Mexico City, and was full of surprises for everyone. Three Professionals were invited: Hye-Yeon Cho 9p,  William Gansheng Shi 1p, and myself.  We held  game reviews, lectures, and simul games.   A new record high for the Mexican Open Tournament was set as well, with 56 players.   The participation in the Youth tournament was also pretty impressive, with a 36 player field in two categories,” said Yin. Mexican Go Association Youth Coordinator Sid Avila adds  “these kids are starting to compete at higher levels, some have already played in international tournaments and are also playing in the Open.”

“This is the 3rd time Mexico has run its Go Congress and every year the community is growing and people are more interested,” reports Mexican Go Association president Emil Garcia. “I believe the world of go is entering into a new stage of development, and we are really glad Mexico is catching this upheaval with the support of Associations such as KABA, the AGA, and the AGF,  who helped us bring the pros in. Undoubtedly Mexican go will keep growing having such big allies. I see a bright future for North American go as a whole.”IMG_2828

“On the last day, the pros were invited to visit a private Mexican elementary school named CIEA Pipiolo, which is the only elementary school with go as a school subject in Mexico City,” said Yin, “There are around 80 students ranging in age from 5-12 years old. Everyone is talented and extremely passionate about go. We three pros were separated and played pair go with the kids in teams.”

All three pros issued a joint message for the kids: “It’s wonderful to be here with all of you, our futures of go. We hope that you will enjoy playing go, learning go, and some of you may become professionals in the future.” Yin adds “I believe that the world of go will expand much more quickly than we expected. As professional go players, we will do our best to promote, teach, and help. We also hope that more schools will include go as a subject in America. I am seeing a brighter future for the world of go.”

For full standings from the congress click here.  For youth standings, click here.  Story by Stephanie Yin, pictures by Yin, Emil Garcia and Tonatiuh Zama

 

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Mexican Go Congress Hosts US Pro Teachers

Monday May 30, 2016

The Mexican Go Association’s 3rd Annual Go Congress in Mexico City will be host to three professional teachers, including one each from the US and Canada.  With the aid of AGA, Stephanie (Mingming) Yin 1p from NY and William (Gansheng) Shi 1p from Vancouver will be visiting Mexico, and with the support of the Korea Amateur Baduk Association, Cho Hye-yeon 9p from Seoul will teach as well.  This is the first time a Mexican Congress will have this many pros.

310-270x180“Western go is developing in a tremendous way. While America and Europe already have pro systems, in Latin America we don’t even have a Congress type of event.  We can’t lag behind compared to other regions,” said Emil García, Mexican Go Association president. “The main purpose of the event is letting the local players grasp some of the deep insight pros have and for them to teach us through lectures, game reviews and simul games.”

Airfare for the two North American players is courtesy of the American Go Foundation, said AGA president Andy Okun. “When we received an invitation from the Mexican Go Association for pro teachers for their event,” said Okun, “I thought about the projects on which we’ve cooperated with Mexico and their success in promoting the game to kids.  I also thought about the many years of generous support we have received from the go associations in Asia and thought this would be a chance for us to ‘pay it forward’ for the good of the game.”

The three-day event will also hold the 3rd Mexican Go Open with a prize pool near $1,000 US and will take place in the Tlatelolco University Cultural Center, Mexico City, Mexico. You can check more info about this event in its webpage.

 

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Japanese Go Exchange Visits Mexico

Sunday November 29, 2015

7“Mexico gladly welcomed the Sociedad Internacional de Intercambio de Go  (SIIG) from Japan, for the first three days of October,” reports Sid Avila. SIIG is a delegation of players, built mainly by retired business men and women, who travel around the world playing and sharing through go.

This is the fourth time SIIG has visited Mexico, and they went to three locations on this trip: Pipiolo art elementary school where Siddhartha Avila teaches a curricular go program; National University, where Emil Garcia leads a team of instructors who teach at open workshops; and Ejoki Buddhist Temple where Ricardo Quintero teaches go on weekends.

Ms. Marcela Zepeda, the principal of  Pipiolo, introduced the Japanese group to the students on the first day. The children performed traditional dances and Mexican songs, followed by a rengo atari-go game with kindergarden children, and a three round pair-go tournament with 36 pairs of Japanese go players and Mexican school children mixed.

The university venue, on October 2nd, was the Contemporary Arts University Museum square, where a Mexico-Japan tournament was held in a 4 round system. Japan won all four rounds and a crystal tablet was given to  SIIG President Sugime Masanao by Daniel Morales, the Mexican Go Association’s treasurer, as acknowledgment of their visit. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor, with Emil Garcia and Sid Avila. 

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