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    Joined: Aug 2010
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    Pru Offline OP
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    Can anyone recommend books / videos/ games or other resources to help kids learn about starting a small business?

    DD7 has been thinking up little businesses since age 4 and now she's getting more serious. This week it's a greeting card business called "Wish You Were Here" and she's been on the computer cranking out the cards. I think her enthusiasum is high enough to where the right idea could at least spawn a small booth at a farmer's market or craft fair.

    A local community college had some business courses for kids this summer but she's not old enough to take them.

    I could probably wing it but I'm not the business type. It would be far better to have a sort of authoritative guide book to help her learn the terminology and overcome the practical hurdles that she doesn't think about. I'm not at my most inspired rambling on about supply costs and target audiences.

    Thanks!

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    Junior Achievement http://www.ja.org/programs/programs_elem_overview.shtml may have some relevant resources.



    "To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle." - George Orwell
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    When DS was 4, he decided he NEEDED (note pleading tone)a laptop computer. I told him that he would have to earn the money himself.

    I made him write a business plan and sign a contract on an advance of $200. for day old baby chicks. He made a spreadsheet to track his expenses. When twochicks died, he got a lesson in write-offs.

    About a month later, we brought home a box with 100 day old chicks. My son took the responsibility of feeding, watering and keeping the pen clean. I admit to sneaking in behind him, 4 yo's are just not very good with a rake and shovel. When the chicks were 4 months old and beginning to lay eggs, he made flyers which we took to the feed stores to sell chickens. Within about 10 days, he had paid me back for the initial loan, all of the feed and had the money for his laptop.

    We didn't use a curriculum, but rather sort of used the "pick and choose" from various websites about starting a business. Everything went into a binder called the great chicken project. It was all very simple. I think his business plan had about two sentences. "I will raise chickens that will lay eggs, When they are old enough, I will sell them and buy a laptop."

    Four years later, DS is 8 and still raises chickens every spring. He has learned a lot about how retail works. He now understands profit margins etc. Last year he had to replace one of the heat lamps and was forced to cut into his profits. He has learned an appreciation for what "cost" actually means.

    I say go for it!!!


    Shari
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    @Bostonian: I'll check that out. Thanks!

    BWBShari: That's a great story and I bet the nature of having living, breathing animals helped keep your DS motivated and reminded daily. We don't live in an area where that would be legal, but it sounds fun!

    Keeping it real and practical sounds like the trick. I like the idea of adding the goal as a reward. Right now DD's is just about the idea of having a product. If she knew it would help her get a puppy she may find that's all the motivation she needs.

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    Wow. BWBShari, that's an incredible story. I'm really impressed by your kiddo. Very cool.

    Pru: My daughter started a greeting card company a few years ago. It was fun for her to make the cards, and she ended up selling them at farmer's markets and a couple of boutiques here in town. I stayed away from trying to give her a "formal" business education, as I believe it was much more important for her to focus on the "people side" -- being proactive and getting herself a booth, seeing if she could get a discount on the booth for being "a kid", selling the cards, etc. Putting herself out there. Every once in a while I'd ask a leading question that would have her thinking about marketing and profit, for example. We kept it "light" and let her lead.

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    Our library is offering a free class about kids starting businesses. You might search there for ideas. Keep us posted.

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    Originally Posted by herenow
    Pru: My daughter started a greeting card company a few years ago. It was fun for her to make the cards, and she ended up selling them at farmer's markets and a couple of boutiques here in town. I stayed away from trying to give her a "formal" business education, as I believe it was much more important for her to focus on the "people side" -- being proactive and getting herself a booth, seeing if she could get a discount on the booth for being "a kid", selling the cards, etc. Putting herself out there. Every once in a while I'd ask a leading question that would have her thinking about marketing and profit, for example. We kept it "light" and let her lead.
    You know, maybe that is the best approach. I could see her getting bogged down in the business concepts. I think I will take the keeping it light approach and see how far it goes. Thanks!


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