How to become an entrepreneur - a lesson plan

 

Class project                          Let’s become an entrepreneur!!“

 

This is a project realised by our 9th graders in Social Sciences. It is supported by the IHK (chamber of industry and trade). The pupils learn the basic knowledge about market economy, profit and loss and the building of a successful business. It is a competition and the task is to develop their own idea of a business – a business plan. The IHK sends senior advisors to our school to support the groups and help the pupils create a realistic idea and plan. At the end of this project there are the presentations of the ideas and the best ideas and presentations are rewarded. The pupils know about this competition as it takes part every year.

 

A lesson plan to start with the basic work and the competition: 2 x 45 minutes

 

First lesson:

Topic: Our economy and how it works

Time: 1 x 45 minutes

Cross-curricular links: Social or Political Science (Intermediate), Class Lesson

Age: School students (14-15 years old)

Room: Computer room

Objectives: At the end of this lesson, the students understand different terms of market economy and how this is connected to entrepreneurship. They will also have an understanding of loss and profit, and about the national rate of unemployment and its types and main reasons as this is important to know when creating one’s own business: In which areas do we need more jobs? Which age group needs more job possibilities?

Materials: School book dealing with terms and facts concerning entrepreneurship and employment in Germany (Politik heute 5) and homepage and online research dealing with market economy and important terms connected to it (www.wirtschaftundschule.de – a homepage concentrating on making economical information accessible for pupils),

 

Phase 1: Teacher asks pupils to name different economic terms concerning entrepreneurship and unemployment:

 


Phase 2: Pupils work in small groups and try to define the terms on a work sheet. The terms are discussed in class (computer) and written down by the teacher.

 

Phase 3: Pupils then work with texts in their school book and from the homepage www.wirtschaftundschule.de to check their results and to correct them if necessary.

 

Phase 4: Knowing about the economy is important to get started with one’s own business. The pupils need to know about the facts that are essential to our economy and how they can get involved without failing or being unemployed. Focus on the question “What is an entrepreneur”? Mind map on the board to see what the pupils connect with this term. Defining the term in the group. Question: “How do you become an entrepreneur?” – Pupils form small groups and write down their ideas of becoming one.

 

Phase 5: Group presentation in class. The pupils first present and then discuss their results. One pupil collects all the ideas on the board. The class decides which aspects are more relevant and important than others.

 

A businessman and entrepreneur from a local company is invited to join the next class. He/ She is going to answer the pupils’ questions on how to become a successful entrepreneur and how to avoid unemployment in our current economic situation. He7 She also refers to advantages and disadvantages of being an entrepreneur. (Every year the colleagues from the Social Sciences department ask partners of our school to join their classes for a period or two.)

Homework:

Think about the competition you are going to enter. You need an idea, a plan to realise this idea and knowledge of how to start a business. Take notes on these three steps and write down questions you want to ask the businessman in the next lesson. Also consider the aspect of unemployment in your questions: How can young people/ businessmen avoid unemployment?

 

Second lesson:

Topic: Getting started: How to become an entrepreneur – Interview with a young businessman

Time: 1 x 45 minutes

Cross-curricular links: Social or Political Science (Intermediate), Class Lesson

Age: School students (14-15 years old)

Objectives: The preparation for this lesson was thinking about the project (idea, plan, realisation) to get first-hand information from a local entrepreneur on how to start a business and how to avoid unemployment. This information is necessary for the pupils to start working on their projects.

Materials: Homework assignment is the basis for the interview and, therefore, for the entire lesson. No other material will be used – only note pads to write down information.

 

Phase 1: The entrepreneur introduces himself with a short presentation – overlook of his business life.

 

Phase 2: Connection to the project: The pupils start to ask their questions about how he started, how he got to this point etc. They write down the information they need.

 

Phase 3: The class is separated in smaller groups (max. 6 pupils) to start brainstorming about ideas for their own business. The guest speaker stays and talks to the group about their ideas. In the course of the project there will be senior advisors to support the groups in their planning.

Homework

 

The pupils have to work on their ideas and outline their plan (rough draft) to be able to start their work with the senior advisors in the following weeks.

 

 

Phases of the project:

 

While working on their idea, the pupils take a tour through town documenting the following aspects:

 

-          the kinds of businesses located in the city centre

-          good and bad locations

-          size of the businesses

-          vacant shops (etc.)

 

The young entrepreneurs need to find partners who invest into their plans – to be able to present their ideas to them, they need to prepare a business plan. The senior advisers help them with that task.