Entrepreneurship is Essential
Most homeschooling parents make sure that they have a curriculum that will teach their children traditional school subjects like Maths, Spelling, Science, Social Studies etc. but few realise that Entrepreneurship is essential for our children if we want to equip them to succeed in the future economy.
Homeschooling parents need to take this aspect of their children’s education seriously and get pro-active about helping their children develop entrepreneurial skills.
In the days of our grandparents, it was perhaps possible to get a good education, get a good job and then work for the same company for 50 years and retire with a gold watch as a farewell gift.
Today, job security is a myth and long-term employment is almost non-existent. Companies lay off staff at short notice, whenever they choose.
So how do we ensure that our children have job stability? Job stability means being able to make a living in your field, through various means.
Experts say that one of the keys to surviving in the future work milieu is having the ability to keep learning and procuring new skills. Just like we constantly update our computer software to perform new functions, so our children will need to keep updating their skills and learn how to apply them to new scenarios and environments.
A good way to ensure that our children are able to survive in this unstable economy is by helping them develop entrepreneurial skills so that they are able to be self-employed (if they choose), whether they sell a service or a product. Starting any business requires developing a number of new skills and finding solutions. Although not every person will choose to be self-employed, having these skills will enhance their ability and performance as an employee.
Why is Entrepreneurship for Kids Essential?
1. Entrepreneurship is about much more than business. It is a way of thinking, of seeing opportunities and of exploring multiple solutions to a problem – skills that can be applied to life.
“Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage.” ~Victor Kiam
2. Second, entrepreneurship teaches essential life skills, including resourcefulness, communication, time management, financial literacy, marketing and managing risk etc. – all of which will help students grow personally and professionally.
3. Entrepreneurs are experienced at running a business, self-confident, innovative, creative, motivated, curious and visionary.
4. Many employers value entrepreneurial thinking.
Teaching kids about money and business can be quite a daunting task for parents who have never learned these skills themselves. We have found that we first had to learn about entrepreneurship and put it into practice in our own lives and then it was easier to help our children.
We discovered needs of our own and needs in our communities both off- and online that we could fill by providing products and services and then we helped some of our older children to start businesses that do the same.
Since many parents are not entrepreneurs, it can be challenging to encourage your children to do something that you have never done before yourself. It might be a good idea to try some small business ventures together as a family.
Do a bit of research and planning and then test the idea. If it fails, learn from the mistakes you made and seek ways to improve the next time. If it works, keep going and also look for ways to improve or move on and try a different business strategy. Remember that failures in business are not bad – they teach you what NOT to do next time!
Many successful self-employed business owners and entrepreneurs started learning about business management, service and delivery, administrative skills, marketing and customer behaviour by doing ordinary everyday jobs in their homes and neighbourhoods as youngsters, like garden services, delivering newspapers, pushing trolleys, selling customised stationery, selling homemade pop-corn and delivering pizzas!
This is a very inspiring TED Talk on You Tube about the process of raising an entrepreneur Cameron Herold: Let’s Raise Kids to Be Entrepreneurs
For parents of young children, here are Shirley’s Tips for Teaching Kids About Money
How to Build a Lifetime Business Online is a great course created by a South African small business coach, to help you and your children get started with low costs and low risks.
Here is an opportunity for homeschoolers, both parents and teens to learn about creating an income generating website on any topic you love, like we both did. Homeschool Business Course