By Kelsey Wichman, Executive Director, Woodstone of Hutchinson
In the month of May I have been working with Mrs. Wither’s 4th grade classroom through Junior Achievement. This program is designed to work with students in grades K-12 by educating the students on entrepreneurship, work readiness, and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs to help student understand the economics of life.
I had to prepare the lessons from the guide book, using the tools and handouts that were given to myself from Junior Achievement. The kids had lots of energy and were very excited throughout the lessons I presented on. Almost, all the students had something to say when a question was asked, all the kids wanted to give their thoughts and answers.
The lessons were very hands-on and interactive between myself and the students. We talked about entrepreneurs and what traits it takes to become a successful entrepreneur and how to work towards those traits if we did not hold those traits already. We talked about starting a business and using the resources that are in our region to develop a business. Then, we discussed marketing techniques and how we were going to get the word out about our business while on a budget.
As a classroom, we developed a hot dog businesses and talked about profit and loss. The students realized throughout the game they needed to buy the hot dogs when they were at a low cost in order to make a larger profit. We then talked about supply and demand while working with supply chains to get our needed supplies to sell our hot dogs. If the supplies were on back order, we realized we could have angry customers and talked about our options as owners to solve the problems and complaints. The students realized if we did not have happy customers we would have to close our hot dog stand down because we would be out of money.
I learned a ton about 4th graders and how they learn. Next year, I hope a few residents will join myself in the classroom and help me with the sessions.