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Building Your Business

Teacher's Guide

Introduction

Entrepreneurship is a popular class among high school juniors and seniors interested in the business field. The class examines the concept of entrepreneurship through the life-like simulation of planning for owning a private business. The “Building Your Business” Curriculum Web will be a semester long project/activity (approx. 12 weeks, with extra time allotted for speakers, snow days, assemblies, etc.). Some activities will require teacher instruction, which will primarily occur directly or via web-embedded video. Most activities are student-centered, requiring student exploration and instruction resulting in a positive learning experience.

Aim

This curriculum web will teach interested high school students about the idea of entrepreneurship and the process of planning to start a new business, in order to provide an opportunity for reflection of it as a potential career path.


Rationale

In eleventh and twelfth grade, students begin to explore the possibilities for their future. It is at this point when they begin to make post-secondary decisions like college, trade school, or full-time employment. The concept of entrepreneurship may be inconceivable, or perhaps, a very distant dream to high school students, certainly not something obtainable as an initial career path. By exploring the idea of entrepreneurship, and the progression of entering into this career, students may develop future goals of business ownership, and realize the reality that it can become.

By exploring the facets of business planning and ownership, students are able to decide if this is a likely career path for them, guiding them toward their concentration in college. The preparation of a business plan, as well as the creative designs and presentation, will help students prepare for college courses on entrepreneurship. They will also have an initial plan for presentation to potential investors, which can be modified or elaborated upon in the future.

General Goals

The general goal of this curriculum web is to give students the opportunity to explore the process, necessities, and issues if starting their own business. They will research their personal aptitudes in determining the focus of their business, as well as the specific requirements and important facets of entrepreneurship that would be necessary to start their business. They will make real-world decisions, explore tax implications, and, ultimately, create a full business plan that is suitable for presenting to investors for a loan request.

Description of Subject Matter

Starting a small business is a very involved process. Developing a business plan involves creating a name and purpose for the business, market research, financial planning, and setting goals. However, once a business has been established and is successful, it can be very rewarding. In some cases, being your own boss is the best route.

Description of Learners

The learners are a heterogeneous group of 11th and 12th grade students. The students attend a suburban high school and they are from middle class socioeconomic families. The class is called “Entrepreneurship”, and it is primarily comprised of academic and honors level students (average to advanced learners). Many of the students are planning to attend business programs in college, and have some experience working in private businesses in the area as part time employment.

Several students have completed the job shadowing project required for graduation, and have decided to take this class as a continuation of exploring a possible career option. The teacher will provided guidance as needed, incorporate activities that are appropriate for varied learning styles, and assist students with learning disabilities by differentiating instruction and making appropriate accommodations.

Prerequisites

  • Know how to use a web browser to perform simple searches and navigate through websites.
  • Read at an eleventh grade reading level or above.
  • Be familiar with Microsoft office programs Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Publisher.
  • Be motivated to learn about starting a new business.

Learning Objectives

  • Name their business and describe its nature and purpose.
  • Investigate the different types of business organization and decide how what type of entity they will have (proprietorship, LLC, partnership, etc).
  • Write a business plan, including all pertinent information (executive summary, market analysis, company description, organization and management, marketing and sales management, service/product line, funding request, and financials).
  • Investigate tax implications related to the organization of your business.
  • Identify three potential problems that may be encountered through the process of starting their business, and formulate possible solutions.
  • Use web software to create a business logo.
  • Design advertisements for the opening of their business using Publisher.
  • Design a PowerPoint presentation for proposal of their business to investors.

General Materials

  • Students will need access to computers containing the most updated version of Microsoft Office Suite.
  • Computers used by students will require video, web, printing, and audio capabilities.
  • Students will need a file to save work on the computer, as well as the teacher email to submit activity results.

**All other materials will be provided within the task for which they are required.**

Teacher Responsibilities

Task Sequence

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