Summer Fun in (and out) of the Sun: Exploring Entrepreneurship

Jul 09, 2021 | Posted by Jennifer

Over the past few weeks, we have been sharing some great summer activities to explore with your family. So far we’ve featured blog posts on developing clubs, connecting with friends through books, celebrating dads who read to their children, going on nature walks, and beginning to build collections. Today we turn our attention to the potential of entrepreneurship.

During the summer when the academic demands are lower, students can dedicate swaths of time to developing a small business. A potential business can be as unique as the student who starts it, but broadly speaking, businesses tend to fall into one of two categories: service-oriented or product-oriented.

In general a service-oriented business is easier to launch and has less startup costs. Help your child to look around his community to see if there’s a niche that needs to be filled. Oftentimes neighborhoods have their own Facebook groups, and it’s possible you may find an opportunity for a business from that space. In the summer, people are often seeking help with lawn mowing, dog walking, babysitting, pet sitting, or garden maintenance. Mindful of the summer slump, parents may be looking for a student tutor who is strong in a particular subject to work with their own child, for example.

While service-related businesses are typically quick and easy to start, don’t discount product-related services. In my area I know of students who have started businesses offering baked goods: One sells delectable Bundt cakes, and another bakes delicious cookies. Perhaps your student has artistic talent or has quite the green thumb. Market those skills! A cartoonist can offer to draw children’s caricatures at local birthday parties. Your gardener can put together a weekly or biweekly produce box for subscribers. Do you keep chickens? Your student can sell the surplus eggs. Natural bath and beauty products are popular and provide an opportunity for kids to sell products they’re proud of. Photography is another possibility students can explore.

Starting and maintaining a business is personally rewarding. It builds character skills such as integrity, personal responsibility, and perseverance. It provides plenty of opportunities to practice real-life skills such as budgeting, financial planning, and marketing. All of the language arts—listening, speaking, reading, writing, and thinking—are exercised. Offering tangible as well as personal rewards, a student-operated business yields benefits beyond the classroom.

If you would like to learn more about helping your students launch their business, take a look at this link. Help your student take stock of his strengths and interests and parlay them into a business he is proud of. A summer of opportunities beckons.

Jennifer Mauser has always loved reading and writing and received a B.A. in English from the University of Kansas in 1991. Once she and her husband had children, they decided to homeschool, and she put all her training to use in the home. In addition to homeschooling her children, Jennifer teaches IEW classes out of her home, coaches budding writers via email, and tutors students who struggle with dyslexia.

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