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Students play bridge to increase ITBS scores
TUESDAY, JULY 05, 2011 09:42 AM

A 2005 study by Christopher Shaw, an Illinois researcher, shows that students who learn to play bridge, a card game, have better scores on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) than those who do not, according Bridge Bulletin, an American Contract Bridge League (ACBL) publication.

To come to this conclusion, Shaw studied six groups of fifth-graders, one of which learned to play bridge as part of their math lessons while the other five did not. Shaw noted that all of the students had similar academic achievement. After both 20 and 32 months, the children who played bridge had higher ITBS scores than those who did not, according to the news source.

Recently, the ACBL said more than 5,000 students who are younger than 18 have engaged in a bridge education program since January 2010. Last year, the group spent more than $150,000 in youth education efforts to support 367 youth bridge classes.

For example, using financial aid from the School Bridge Learning Series and the Duplicate Bridge Association of Atlanta, the league was able to teach 17 bridge classes in Georgia schools.