Do you want to help your students realize their potential?

Of course you want your students to realize their potential but in an environment where there is so much pressure to make sure kids are doing well on standardized tests it is nearly impossible.  Implementing one more thing such as youth entrepreneurship makes it feel overwhelming. The good thing about entrepreneurship is that it fits into the subjects you are already teaching.  The entrepreneurship mindset includes problem solving, innovation, creativity (as do math, science and language arts). Entrepreneurs need financial management, reading, public speaking (as do math and language arts). You are already teaching what a young entrepreneur needs to succeed, you just need to re-frame it to help kids utilize these skills for creating a business. It is so rewarding to see a kid have the “light bulb” go on when they see the real world application and realize the possibilities of what they are learning in school.

Do you want to empower your students to create their own destiny?

Entrepreneurs are definitely in charge of their own destiny.  Integrating youth entrepreneurship will teach responsibility and help kids realize that they can control their own destiny.  In today’s world, there is so much turmoil and negativity that it is hard for kids to rise above it.  They may think their only option is to go to school for 14-16 years and then get a job and work for someone else until they retire.  Of course entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone and a college education is something no one can take away but if kids knew that there were other options at a young age, they may think differently about their future and realize that they do have more control than they thought over their own destiny. Don’t you want to be the teacher that shows them they do have multiple opportunities?

Do you want to transfer their learning to the real-world applications?

Having two sons in college, I have heard them say that they don’t see how they will use what they are learning in the real-world.  As you already know firsthand there is so much pressure for students to do well on standardized tests in order for the school to receive funding. With this pressure and so many different levels of ability in the classroom it takes all your efforts just to get through the day.  By no fault of the you, the real world application often gets missed.  But this causes a big problem for that kid (like my youngest son) who doesn’t see the purpose in what they are learning and so they aren’t successful in the classroom. Entrepreneurship is a way to incorporate what you are teaching in the classroom to the real-world.  Don’t you agree that giving kids real-life application may change their attitude when it comes to learning?

I agree that entrepreneurship is a great idea but I don’t have any business experience and I don’t have the time or the money!

That is how E-seedling can help.  The youth entrepreneur curriculum has been developed and improved over the past 9 years as part of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Small Business Development Center’s youth entrepreneur camp and is now available in an easy to implement modular format. The curriculum is developed for middle school grades but has been adapted from grades 4 through high school. Since it is in a modular format you can pick and choose what will work for your classroom.  It can be integrated into your current curriculum or can be used in a workshop or after-school club at your school.

“Entrepreneurs are not ‘born’….rather they ‘become’ through the experiences of their lives.” 
Professor Albert Shapiro, Ohio State University

(From the National Content Standards of Entrepreneurial Education

 http://www.entre-ed.org/Standards_Toolkit/nurturing.htm )

Problem-solving, leadership skills, creativity, team work, communication and collaboration are all 21st century skills. But how do we integrate them into our classroom in a fun and engaging way? Teaching entrepreneurship is the perfect way to incorporate these and the Biz Ops Game™- is a fun and simple way to incorporate real life experiential learning into your classroom.

While not all of your students may want to become young entrepreneurs; learning these 21st century skills will help them as an innovative employee and in other areas of their lives.

The Biz Ops Game™ is a unique board game experience that teaches business basics, teamwork, collaboration, creativity, communication and problem-solving.  I have used this game with great success for kids ages 9 and up; including high school and adults. FREE Download of DIY Biz Ops Game Instructions below!

Here are some FAQ’s to answer your questions about how the Biz Ops Game™ works and what it teaches.

  1. What is the Biz Ops Game™ and how long does it take?
  • The Biz Ops Game is a fast paced business simulation that is run a game format and takes about 90 minutes to play (can be played in 2-45 minute sessions).
  1. What concepts does the Biz Ops Game™ teach?
  • Basic Business operations for a manufacturing and retail business
  • Process improvement
  • The roles necessary to run a successful business
  • Budgeting/Planning and financial record keeping
  • Team work and Collaboration
  • Customer Service and communication
  • Sales skills
  • Creativity
  1. What ages is the Biz Ops Game™ for?
  • It was originally designed for grades 6-8 but as I have used it, I realize it works well for almost any age. I have used it for as young as age 9 and as old as adults.
  1. How does it teach business operations?
  • Teams create and run a manufacturing and retail business in which they create, test and sell their products (paper airplanes).
  • Teams start out with a loan from the bank that must be paid back with interest.
  • Teams assign business roles such as accountant, sales person, purchaser, designer based on each team members’ strengths.
  • Teams plan their expenses, design and test their product.
  • The salesperson and engineer demonstrate and sell their product to the customer.
  • The airplane is flown on a duct tape runway with the goal of flying straight and hitting the ‘X’ at the end of the runway.
  • There are 5 levels – during each level the teams should improve their processes and learn more about the business operations.
  • Teams track sales (quantity & dollars) and expenses and create a profit and loss statement to see which team wins.
  1. How does the game teach budgeting and financial record keeping?
    • Teams start with a $200 loan and budget what they are going to spend their money on.
    • They must pay back the loan with interest but the earlier they pay it back the less interest they have to pay.
    • There are several factors to take into consideration when budgeting their money including the number of airplanes they can make in 3-5 minutes, customer requirements such as theme, colors and flying straight on the runway, the loan they need to pay back and giving back by donating some of their money to charity.
    • They track their actual expenses and sales and finish up with a profit and loss statement.
  1. How does the game teach teamwork and collaboration?
    • The kids are divided into teams of 4 or 5; each team comes up with a business name, a charity they want to contribute to and assigns roles based on their team member strengths.
    • They have to agree upon what to spend their money on which include the choices of raw materials to make their product, office supplies to enhance their product, savings to pay back their loan faster and donating to charity.
    • They work together to achieve a common goal of making the most net profit by listening to the customer, communicating to the team and creating a quality product.
  1. How does the game teach customer service and communication?
    • The initial customer requirement consist of a theme (each level has a different theme) and that the airplane flies straight on the duct tape runway and comes as close to the ‘X’ as possible.
    • The sales person is coached by the customer – to introduce their self with their name, title, a firm handshake and name of company. Once the airplane is sold to the customer, the customer gives them additional suggestions such as “I would like to see a business card” or “I love the color green” – the sales person must then communicate that to the team so they can plan and adjust accordingly in order to please the customer and maximize their sales.
    • The team must also communicate so they can improve their process and utilize each other’s strengths to create a successful business.
  1. How does the game teach creativity and problem-solving?
    • Each team starts out by coming up with creating their own company name, branding and charity they want to contribute to.
    • Teams need to be creative to solve the problem of how are they going to create the greatest number of quality airplanes that exceed customer requirements so that they can maximize profits and ultimately win the game.
    • Each team has to be creative in how they spend their money so they aren’t buying too much raw materials, keeping their loan for too long, and not buying office supplies they don’t need.
  1. How can you reinforce their learning?
    • The nature of the game being experiential and the fact that they repeat the process for 5 levels will allow them to learn and improve at each level.
    • The competitive nature of the game also brings in a fun factor that allows the teams to learn through play and experience without the penalty of failure.
    • Debriefing the game is very important to review what each team learned and how they improved each level – it gives the kids a chance to learn from each other.
    • Play the game again with different teams and have them come up with their own product using the materials in the game.
    • Have the kids create a fund raiser for a school need where they make and sell a product that other kids will buy.

In summary, the Biz Ops Game™ is an experiential fast paced business simulation that can be run in 90 minutes and teaches 8 major business/life skills consisting of:  1) business operations 2) process improvement 3) budgeting and financial record keeping 4) team work and collaboration 5) customer service 6) communication 7) creativity and 8) problem-solving.

I’ve included a do-it-yourself version that you can download for free to try it out (click on the image below).  If you are not a do-it yourself kind of person or just don’t have the time, the complete facilitator kit, which has everything you need to run the game for up to 30 students at one time, is also available for purchase (scroll down below the image to order).

Here’s how you can get started implementing youth entrepreneurship in your classroom!

1) If you are a “Do-it-Yourselfer” or just want ideas for activities and content to teach entrepreneurship then the More Than a Lemonade Stand™ book is for you.  The book includes all of the activities and curriculum ideas you need to create your own version of entrepreneurship and business in your classroom. More Than a Lemonade Stand™ is available at your favorite online bookstore.

2) If you want a fun fast-paced interactive team game to introduce entrepreneurship in your classroom then the The Biz Ops Game™ Facilitator Kit is for you. The kit includes everything you need to teach business in your classroom. For ages 10 and up. It is the perfect activity to introduce how a business runs and can be played and debriefed in about 90 minutes. The kids are divided into small teams, create their own company, assign roles to run the company, budget and track sales all while designing, making and selling paper airplanes. The team with biggest profit wins! It is best suited for groups of up to 30 at a time and since the materials are reusable and can be copied, the kit can be used over and over. The Biz Ops Game™ can be purchased on the products & services page.

3) If you want to implement youth entrepreneurship in your classroom and don’t have the time or resources to develop the curriculum and don’t want to “reinvent the wheel” then the More Than a Lemonade Stand™ Facilitator Guide and Student Workbook is for you. Included in the curriculum are modules that teach How to Choose a Business Idea, Branding, Marketing & Sales, Financials, Customer Service and Business Operations. Bonus modules include Presentation skills and Business Ethics. Also included is the Lemonade Stand “Apprentice Style” Team activity. They are provided in electronic formats to keep the cost affordable and so that you can easily customize them to fit your needs. The Facilitator Guide is the complete curriculum in MS-Power Point and includes the teaching script in the notes portion to get up and teaching fast. The student workbook is in a PDF format and can be reproduced for students use. The complete curriculum contains over 30 hours of programming that you can pick and choose from for your needs. It is available for ordering on the products & services page.

4) **BEST VALUE**If you are ready to get going and implement a complete young entrepreneur program then the Entrepreneurship Education Bundle is for you. The bundle includes all of the above and is available at a special introductory price for a limited time.     CLICK HERE TO ORDER   or  TAX EXEMPT ORGANIZATIONS CLICK HERE TO ORDER

5) Teacher/Facilitator Training we are working hard on scheduling a live teacher 2-3 day interactive and engaging training session in Madison, WI. We are also working creating video training so that you can complete it whenever it is convenient to you. We will update this as soon as details are finalized. If you would like to be contacted regarding the training please sign up for our mailing list or email me at juliewood@eseedling.com

6) Customization for your classroom. he curriculum was developed originally for middle school aged kids but has been adapted for kids ages 9 – 16.  If you would like assistance with customizing, contact juliewood@eseedling.com for a free consultation and estimate.

Contact Me:

If you still are feeling hesitant about teaching young entrepreneurs, I am here to help you. Please contact me at juliewood@eseedling.com or 608-332-9836 and I would be happy to set up a free consultation to answer any questions you might have. I am also available on an hourly or project basis if you need it. And as always, our products are 100% guaranteed so if at any time you feel the products are not meeting your needs we will issue you a refund. (All we ask is that you return the products and let us know why, as we strive to continuously improve our products & services).

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