The Decade of Entrepreneurship activity affords your students the opportunity to research an entire decade worth of entrepreneurs and share that knowledge with their peers. The focus of the research should be on the entrepreneurs that changed that decade. Finally, your students will do a short pitch or presentation about their decade to share their newfound knowledge with their peers.
- Review the definition of an entrepreneur (YE’s definition is “someone who solves problems for profit”). Ask students to describe someone they consider to be a successful entrepreneur from the past decade.
- Tell students they will have an opportunity to research a decade worth of entrepreneurs who changed the world.
- Determine how you will share the activity with your students.
- Review the handout and PowerPoint and modify as needed.
- Upload the PowerPoint to your classroom platform if desired.
- Update the handout to include the length of pitch you would like students to present.
- Decide how students will deliver their pitch – live on a video conferencing platform, submitting a video to your classroom platform, sharing on social media or Flipgrid, etc.
- Review the debrief questions shared in this guide and decide how you would like to share any of those as additional reflection questions.
- Post the activity to your classroom platform for students to access and complete or set up a Zoom session to walk through the activity with students.
- Post the Decade of Entrepreneurship handout explaining the activity and/or share the PowerPoint.
- Share the activity expectations.
- Choose a partner to work with (if possible, or have students work individually). With your partner or individually, choose a decade to research. The goal of the research is twofold. First, determine what entrepreneurs were in the world. Secondly, find commonalities among the entrepreneurs of that decade.
- Create a PowerPoint presentation. The presentation should include but is not limited to: – A slide for each entrepreneur – The slides can include images, text, videos, etc. Encourage creativity!
- Ask students to “turn in” their presentation in whichever way you typically accept assignments. (Google, Share Drive, the Cloud, print, etc.)
- Pitch Presentations
- This may look different depending on the method of activity delivery that you selected when prepping whether having students pitch live virtually via Zoom, upload to Flipgrid, etc.
- If using partners, each partnership will pitch for 3-5 minutes. The pitch will accompany the PowerPoint presentation.
- Each partner MUST participate in the pitch.
- Offer an incentive for those that dress in attire from the decade and/or including samples of products within their pitch. Again, encourage creativity!
Students can complete the debrief on paper by answering the following questions or be put into groups via Zoom to discuss their learnings.
- Ask your students what these entrepreneurs, across all decades, had in common.
- Did these entrepreneurs “solve problems for profit”?
- What made them successful?
- Were these entrepreneurs successful on their first try?
- Did they ever fail in their entrepreneurial efforts?
- What if they had never decided to be entrepreneurs? Would there be any companies/products/ services that we would not have today?
- Ask your students if they think they have any of these characteristics?
- If so, were they born with these traits?
- If not, do they think they can learn them?
- Pro tip– If you are able to use a platform allowing your students to see one another, these questions can lead to a discussion about fixed mindsets.
- In what way(s) did entrepreneurs of this decade improve the lives of others?
- What were some ways the entrepreneurs you researched were opportunity obsessed?
- What examples did you see in the entrepreneurs of finding opportunities in the obstacles they overcame in their life?
- What evidence do you see in the entrepreneurs you researched, that they created benefit to society while being good stewards of the resources they used?
- In what ways did the entrepreneurs you researched benefit others with their knowledge?
- Is there evidence the entrepreneurs you studied relied on the knowledge and expertise of others to create value for society?
- Did you see any connections in the ways the entrepreneurs created value for society? Compare and contrast ways the entrepreneurs of your decade created value for society.
- Did the entrepreneurs you studied benefit from the freedom to compete in an open marketplace? Did society benefit? What was the level of freedom your entrepreneurs experienced in the marketplace during their decade?
- Do you see a connection between your entrepreneurs right to own and operate a business in the marketplace and the well-being of society during that time period? Discuss.
- What evidence is there that the entrepreneurs you studied was respectful of the rights of others? Comparing the entrepreneurs you studied, did you see evidence that they were respectful of the right of others? Explain.