S-Factor 3 – Every child should meet people from the world of work and business and be involved in an entrepreneurial activity at least once every term.
In the current climate, with youth unemployment at record breaking levels, it is critical that children and young people learn about the range of industries, professions and the myriad of ways to make a living that now exist.
If they come through their education without learning that to have a job they may eventually need to employ themselves, then, as educators, we have done them a huge disservice.
There are plenty of opportunities to unearth the professional skills and experiences that exist within your school and college community.
Existing visitors to school, people at venues you go and visit and parents and governors all have stories to tell about their professional and creative lives.
As well as an enterprising curriculum, the chance to ‘learn by doing’ through undertaking business and enterprise activities is crucial. Schools and colleges have a key role to play, providing entrepreneurial opportunities – big and small, real and simulated – so young people can develop their business nous, skills and resilience.
And, finally – why would we suggest making this a once-a-term commitment?
Well, we passionately believe that culture change isn’t going to happen if young people get one or two collapsed days of enterprise every year, or meet just one of two role models. Those experiences might be engaging and great fun, but they’re over as soon as they start.
To develop enterprise skills and aspirations most young people need consistent enterprising learning and inspiration over time, which increases in sophistication and challenge.
Now, that doesn’t mean you have to run something like Make £5 Blossom every term – no, that’s where you’re enterprising teachers come in. If every teacher is equipped and confident to develop enterprising curricula, they will understand the importance of linking with the world of work and business and creating entrepreneurial opportunities and be motivated to do so.
What we do:
We have developed a range of employer engagement programmes and ideas for engaging role models from your school, college or the wider community.
See our ‘Make £5 Blossom’ resource – a tried and tested employer engagement programme that develops business and enterprise skills, knowledge and understanding.
- An Infant school linked with a local business and received a loan so that each class had £20 to start their own ventures. The children took over the school fair, normally run by the parents group and set about developing new ideas for stalls and fundraising, with a marketing campaign to promote the event. Planning and organising the fair provided rich material to link with the curriculum, particularly in literacy, maths, art, design technology and speaking and listening. The fair was a record breaking success – the best ever attended – children had been so enthused with their new ownership of the event that many who had not previously attended brought their families along. As a result, children have taken over managing all of the school events, and parental engagement with the events, and school life, has increased.
- Geography students at a secondary school were learning about the economy and employment in developing countries and the simple and ingenious services and products which traders and street entrepreneurs devise. As part of the unit of work, students were challenged to put themselves in the position of a street trader and try to make money from nothing. In a following lesson, students created a street market, providing hand massages, sewing services, and caricatures. As well as a hands-on learning experience that developed their enterprise skills, students also developed a deeper empathy and understanding of the informal economy in developing countries.
- Art and Design students at college ran a mini venture alongside their studies – creating a professional private view to showcase their work. They had a budget to create a marketing campaign and were tasked to manage the event, developing their planning skills and creativity. To keep costs down students designed and printed their own posters, for which they received a lot of positive feedback. The students decided to continue to develop the design business, providing bespoke lithographic design and print to college departments, the wider community and local businesses. This experience raised students awareness of self employment and gave them real business skills and experience to add to their C.V's.