Every summer is crazy when you have kids. Between family vacations, sleep-away camps, organizing beach trips, and hosting BBQs, it’s hard to do much more than take it day by day. But the summer is a great time to teach your kids about entrepreneurship.
According to Norman Goldstein, Founder of By Kids For Kids, “There’s a difference between teaching a 20-year-old entrepreneurship for the first time and teaching it to a child for the first time. For children, entrepreneurship will eventually become embedded in the DNA and in the way they look at the world.” So it’s up to us as parents to get the gears turning at a young age. Why not start this summer?
Here are three ways you can encourage your kids to explore the possibilities of entrepreneurship this summer:
The classic old timey lemonade stand will never go out of style. Though not for the reasons you may be thinking. Lemonade stands hardly ever earn a profit, so forget about teaching the little ones about ROI via this tried and true classic. A lemonade stand does, however, teach children about planning, staying focused, working for an outcome, and thinking like a small business owner. You can even teach them about the basics of marketing if you so choose. Every kid should experience the joys of selling lemonade on a street corner to enjoy the fruits of their labor in the form of some drug store candy. Make a point to link the experience to what you do, and throw in some entrepreneurial lessons as the day goes on.
There are actually camps dedicated to teaching kids about owning a small business now! At these camps, your kids will not only learn how to think like an entrepreneur, but a lot of them actually cover the basics of business (like gaining investors, profit, intellectual property protection, etc.) depending on the age range of the camp. Some good ones are Camp Bizsmart, ICON Academy, and Youngpreneur. Keep in mind that some camps are a family affair and some are just for the kids. But if you can swing it, a brush up on business basics may be a good thing for you, too!
Host a “bring your kid to work day”
Lastly, there’s no better way to instill inspiration in your child’s eyes than letting them watch you work. Hosting a “bring your kid to work day” is not only a great way to teach kids about entrepreneurship, but it also serves as a nice day to meet everybody’s families and a chance to get to know your employees a little better. Don’t just set your kid up in the corner with a coloring page. Set aside a day to focus on learning. Meaning, don’t schedule any big meetings for “bring your kid to work day.” I’ve found that Friday afternoons are typically best. Really make a point to walk your child through your day. Let them know what you’re doing, and, most importantly, why you’re doing what you’re doing- how it fits into the bigger picture.