Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Jennifer Simms

Heatherwood Mini-Society Project


Photo by Carrie O’Boyle Fourth-graders Kaitlyn Tschoepe (left) and Charlotte Oehmek sell puffball animals to little sister Corinne Tschoepe during Heatherwood’s mini-society fair.

Ever wanted to start a small business? Heatherwood fourth-graders know how. This spring, students in Ms. Runyon’s and Mrs. Zimmerman’s classes studied economics through a unit called mini-society.

Photo by Carrie O’Boyle Fourth graders Billy Bingley (left) and Cormac O’Boyle, founders of Sci-Fi Spaceships, pose with the cardboard spacecraft they made for Heatherwood’s mini-society fair.

During the unit, students paired up to form companies. Each company earned seed money, called Husky Bucks, by doing chores around the classroom, such as stacking chairs or taking attendance. Companies used their bucks to buy supplies and create products. Some students made items to sell and others created games that customers could pay to play.

The unit’s culmination unit was a fair where parents and younger students could use Husky Bucks to shop at each company’s table. Besides earning money at the fair, these fourth-grade entrepreneurs experienced some of the real costs of a business, including buying a business license and paying a rental fee for their booth. Students also learned about the nuances of business strategy.

“I learned that location is key,” student Billy Bingley said. “We were next to a group that was really popular and that gave us a lot of foot traffic.”


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