Sunday April 7, 2013
Moonyong Choi 6P spent a week visiting school and youth go clubs in the California Bay area, March 18-24. The Korean Baduk Association (KBA) sent Choi to see first-hand what go programs in America are like, and he is currently in the Los Angeles area visiting programs there as well. “It was really fun,” reports Patrick Wang, of Hyde Park Middle School in Cupertino, “the pro introduced himself, told us how he started playing, why he played, and how he went pro. After that, we asked him questions like how many tournaments he had won or how to improve. Then he played four people at once with nine handicaps on 19×19 and five handicaps on 13×13. Our school teacher even let us stay after lunch to finish the games! To end it off everyone asked him for his autograph.” Choi also visited Meyerholtz Elementary, Valley Christian High, and Berryissa Chinese School, all in San Jose, before finishing up his trip with a visit to the Santa Clara Youth Go Club. At all of the locations, Choi spoke to the children about his challenges in becoming a pro. “I studied for five years at the go school and became an insei which is a preliminary professional. During the course I lost a lot of times, especially games that I was ahead but lost in the end game. Sometimes I cried a lot and felt depressed,” said Choi, “Did you ever lose a game that you thought you had won? Did you hate your opponent for that? However, you don’t have to hate the person. Because you’re the one that made the mistake . We are all in the learning process. Correcting the mistakes and playing better the next time is what is important.”
Choi’s top tips for new players are “First of all, don’t be afraid of losing the game. I myself have played more than 20,000 games and lost half of them. There is a saying that ‘losing means learning’. It’s ok if you lose but knowing the reason and correcting it is how you take your skills to the next level. That’s why having a good teacher is essential. Second, being modest or having a humble attitude is good. There are lots of people that play better than you. You are in the learning process. Learning from your weaker opponent’s mistakes and from your stronger opponent’s good moves will make you a better person the next day. Third, enjoy the game. When you’re playing you always have to do the best you can. Think as much as possible. This is a war game. But once it’s over admit the results and try hard to find better moves. The more you love the game and dedicate yourself to it, the better player you will be.” His advice was well received, and Yanping Zhao of the Santa Clara Youth Go Club reported “It was a wonderful visit to our club. Mr. Choi, and our club members all had a very good time! About 15 kids came to the club to meet the pro. Mr. Choi was very kind to play a teaching game with almost every one of the them. He played several rounds, each round with four or five kids at the same time. During the breaks between the rounds, we had pizza and the pro chatted with kids. At the end, the kids signed a thank you card to express their appreciation. The kids all hope to meet Mr. Choi again and more pros in the future!” The visit was part of a larger outreach to support new programs in America, and was arranged by Myungwan Kim 9P. More pros will be visiting soon, and future trips will be scheduled in other areas of the country if all goes well.
-Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Yanping Zhao: Moonyong Choi 6P plays a simul at the Santa Clara Youth Go Club, in California.
Tuesday April 2, 2013
Eleven-year-old Jeremy Chiu 5d has won the Junior Division of the US Youth Go Championships (USYGC), finally defeating his longtime rival Aaron Ye 5d. The tourney began on Jan. 20th, but the final rounds weren’t completed until March. Chiu got off to a good start in the double-elimination tourney by defeating Willis Huang 3d in the first round, and then beating Ye in round 2. Chiu then went on to defeat Redmond Cup runner up Austen Liao 3d, and then Brandon Zhou 2d – who at just nine years of age is a player to watch out for. Chiu finally got his face off with Ye on March 16th, in a game with heavy fighting. Ultimately, Ye’s center group was caught without eyes, and short on time, and he was forced to resign. The game record is below, look for a Feng Yun commentary on another match from this series in the near future. Chiu also won in the Ing Foundation’s World Youth Qualifier, and will be going on to compete in Prague this summer, along with Andrew Lu 6d, who also won both the USYGC Senior Division and the Ing Qualifiers. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Muling Huang
Monday April 1, 2013
“Registration for the AGA Summer Go Camp is now open,” reports camp director Amanda Miller,”we welcome campers from the ages of 8 to 18 to attend for a week of go-playing and fun.” For the convenience of the campers and their families, payments can be made online, although some forms must still be mailed directly to the organizers. The camp will take place two weeks before the Go Congress from July 20 to July 27 and will be held at YMCA Camp T. Frank Soles in Rockwood, Pennsylvania. Registration information and forms can be found here. Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Amanda Miller: Mingjiu Jiang 7p playing a simul at last year’s camp.
Thursday March 21, 2013
The Ing Foundation is holding its final round for the World Youth Goe Qualifier this weekend, in Menlo Park California. Andrew Lu 6d and Albert Yen 6d will compete in the Senior Division; Jeremy Chiu 5d and Austen Liao 3d will compete in the Junior Division. Ing coordinator John Kwei also announced that the “Special Representation” position is still open, and interested parties may contact the Ing Foundation. Download the attached file to apply. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor
Monday March 18, 2013
The AGA Go Camp is confirmed for this summer, and will be held two weeks before the Go Congress, from July 20 to July 27. Camp directors Nano Rivera and Amanda Miller will return to organize the event, in an all new location - YMCA Camp T. Frank Soles in Rockwood, PA, about two hours outside of Pittsburgh. Campers from the ages of 8 to 18, of all skill levels, are invited for a week of go-playing and fun. More information regarding the camp will be available on the AGA camp page soon, and registration will open within the next two weeks. Inquiries can be sent to Amanda Miller at email@example.com. All youth who played in the USYGC are eligible for $400 AGF scholarships to camp, and needs based scholarships will also be available. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Shawn Ray: Campers try their hand at one-color go, with a computer assist, at last year’s go camp.
Monday March 18, 2013
Six young students have won free lessons with professional go players, as part of a new AGF program that is being supported by a private donor. Winners wrote essays on why they wanted the lessons, and some submitted letters of recommendation as well. The winners include a 12 kyu from Illinois, a 7 kyu from New York, a 21 kyu from Washington, two kyu players from Georgia, and a 5 kyu from Texas. The teachers are Yi Lun Yang 7P, Janice Kim 3P, and Jennie Shen 2P, who will give each student six lessons. Four more students will be selected at a future date as well. “We expect these kids to keep playing, learning, and to try to pass along the knowledge they gain to other players, particularly young people,” writes program organizer Keith Arnold . -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: Janice Kim 3P
Friday March 15, 2013
Blackie’s International Baduk Academy (The Traveling Go Board 1/19/2013 EJ) will offer their first summer camp this June. “We hope that kids can join to our camp, but anyone is welcomed,” Kim Seung-jun tells the E-Journal. “No age or rank limit, just like in BIBA.” The camp will run June 24 through July 23 in Seoul, South Korea. In addition to helping students improve, the camp’s goals include facilitating cultural exchanges through the game of baduk (go). Highlights of the camp include game reviews and commentaries, studying life and death problems and professional games as well as games; teachers include Kim Seung-jun 9P, Diana Koszegi 1P, On So-jin 7P and Park Young-un 7d. Other activities include visiting the Hangkuk Kiwon and meeting with famous professional players, visiting the Kwon Gap Yong Baduk Academy in Seoul, as well as playing sports in a nearby park and visits to the sea. Click here for details and to register.
- photo courtesy BIBA
Saturday March 9, 2013
Aresh Pourkavoos took first place at the 1st Simsbury Open Scholastic Go Tournament, at the Simsbury Library, in Connecticut, on March 2nd. The tournament was held in conjunction with the Simsbury Scholastic Chess Tournament. “We had 6 fierce go competitors enter the tournament,” reports Mike Spaner. “This was the first go tournament for all of the entrants. Our young players not only battled for 5 rounds, but they also took the time to teach many curious onlookers from the chess side of the playing hall (there were roughly 90 chess players). Although outnumbered, our young go ambassadors (all new AGA members) did a wonderful job promoting the game of go. The kids were all very excited to meet others who share their love for the game. Between rounds, there were some great hallway discussions on suggested playing strategies and tactics. One of the chess player’s parents had not played go for many years and was excited to get in a game between rounds. As an observer, I was very happy to see how energized the kids were during and after the tournament. A small, friendly, but competitive tournament for our our youth really helps spark a deeper interest in the game that we love. The Central Connecticut Go Club would like to extend a special thank you to Gert Hilhorst for organizing the overall Chess and Go tournament. The entire event was flawlessly executed by Gert and his team with the helpful assistance of the library staff. We also would like to thank Mike Scudder for serving as our Tournament Director. Kiseido publishing graciously provided a discount on gift certificates for our prize winners, and the kids were thrilled with their prizes,” adds Spaner. Winners Report: 1st place: Aresh Pourkavoos; 2nd place: Sophie Spaner; 3rd place: Matt Miller. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Story and photo by Mike Spaner.
Friday March 8, 2013
Nominations for the American Go Foundations Teacher of the Year award are now open. The award is presented each year at the U.S. Go Congress and recognizes an outstanding American teacher. The winner will receive an all expenses paid trip to the congress. To be eligible, a teacher must be a member of the AGA, have been teaching go to children for at least two hours a week (during the school year) for two years, have started a go club or organization for youth, and have helped their students enter appropriate tournaments, if possible. If you would like to nominate someone for this award, including yourself, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominations are due by April 30th and should include a description of the teacher’s activities, how long they have been teaching, and how many students attend their program. - Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: Last year’s winner Joe Walters, of Pasadena, CA, with students from his program. To read more about Joe’s work, check out Sensei #8.
Thursday March 7, 2013
Youngsters from Portland, OR, took on kids from Mexico City, in a friendly match on KGS, held on Feb. 24th. The Portland group, organized by Peter Freedman, played two rounds, and won 9-5, with one tie. The Mexican group are students of Siddhartha Avila’s, at the Pipiolo elementary school, and have competed with the Portland kids before, who Avila says are “much stronger this year”. The kids video conferenced with each other before the matches, and were able to meet their opponents by Skype as well as across the board. “Some of the kids we played plan on visiting Portland before going on the Go Congress in Tacoma this summer,” reports Freedman. “They and their parents will homestay with our go families, spending a week playing go, soccer, and sightseeing with us. Our families are really revved about this idea.” Winner’s Report: Portland 2 game winners: McCaleb Nessler-Cass 16k, Jordan Reed 24k, Hikaru ?k; 1 game winners: Wilson ?k, Ellis Zehnder 23k; Mexico 2 game winners: Samuel 17k; 1 game winners: David Martinez 16k, Sebastian 20k, Yatzitl 24k. Story by Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor -Photo: Students from Pipiolo competing, by Siddhartha Avila.