The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.
Business games are still exotic in the educational process. Perhaps only specialized classes practice their use, and this becomes a great base for nurturing young entrepreneurs. Of course, the students will not soon apply their knowledge and developments in practice, but today a school that is inextricably linked with the realities and social changes can and should help the student to know what business is and what its role in society is. No need to be a student of the elite business class or be engaged in special courses to try yourself at business games and business simulations. There are several options for implementing business lessons in the school process.
This is a more traditional type of business games. The purpose of the simulation game is to develop students’ logical thinking, ingenuity and ability to lead, to distribute the work and effectively work in a team. There is no single task of presenting in the material basics of entrepreneurship and tips for making business decisions. It will all be at the next meeting. In the simulation game the teacher finds the first link of the business activities involving students in a new activity for them.
For example, devote the first simulation game to management style. For a start tell the students about the most famous and popular leadership styles (authoritarian, democratic, liberal). Then divide the class into three groups and choose the leaders for each of them. All subsequent assignments are made by the group according to appointed roles. The task of the lesson is to practically determine the effectiveness of leadership styles.
Or the next option. The class must organize and hold elections to the School Board. They need to make the rules of elections, to provide all the important items, to draw detailed program of Election Day, to consider the conducting of PR campaigns, etc. In order to make the percentage of the effectiveness of such activities higher the class is again divided into groups. The determination of belonging to the unit on the preparation and organization of elections by responsible group could be done through lotting. The way of working on a project is solved by students. This can be a brainstorming or discussion of the proposed concepts. Tell the group that they cannot do without a leader and the secretary, who will log the decision. The leader must not only manage the process of discussion, but later to protect the group’s decision and be prepared to answer questions from the audience. The class votes for the group’s decision, approves or rejects them, has the opportunity to correct solutions. At the end of lesson the teacher must have a general election scheme and approved by class solutions for each item. The teacher evaluates the work of the class, concludes – was the goal of lesson achieved or not, how was he pleased with students’ activity. The teacher also distinguishes some students. Introspection is required on this lesson: students tell what business skills helped them in their work, what they marked for themselves, how they assess the result personally. A big plus is that the created model (program) of elections students then can be applied in practice, and it is only positively approved the principles of school government.
An entire lesson can be devoted to such type of business game and amused as a private exercise. The teacher can initiate a business auction, in which all students demonstrate their entrepreneurial ideas. The proposal of thinking on business model can be offered as homework, afterwards to talk about it, to motivate the choice and inspire the audience will be the student’s task. The teacher should stimulates class’s activity asking them evaluate models by classmates not only in monosyllables, but requesting for additional questions, offering options to optimize the model.
If students are not ready for such a task, a lesson or at least its majority could be dedicated to the basics of business modeling. This is a very simplified version of a business model that will serve as the introduction to students in business and management, and will be for them not only useful but also interesting. The teacher can start talking to students about a business plan, for example, building of recreation center in the city. Next – rely on students’ fantasy. First let it be a group assignment. As soon as the first versions will be made public, tell the students about such things as taxes, initial capital, the target audience, partners, the forecast of business performance, etc. According to heard, the group will adjust their plans.
At the lessons on business modeling students can also work with the naming (creating vivid names for companies, shares, commodities, etc.), public relations campaigns, analyze the real business situation in the city or area. The students will gladly take up this idea and enjoy such lessons, because it makes them more like adults, allows dreaming up and showing their potential, and also it distracts from the usual activities and is a kind of intelligent charging.
Week of Business Projects
Perhaps noticing the first success in business activities and marking the interest of students, the teacher will want to spend an entire theme week. Its organization requires a lot of training, but if the students will be teacher’s partner, the event is bound to succeed. Remarkably, if there can be a possibility to attract the real businessmen to the event of theme week. They can act at the festival of business projects not only as judges, but also to give a master class. Coordinating it with the administration, the teacher can arrange a trade in the hall of the school, such as souvenirs, made the boys in labor class or creative courses. One has only to decide in advance how to distribute profits. The endeavors of student and the completion of the cabinet materials for creativity must be considered. One of the events of the week should have charitable focus: even collection of toys and clothing for the orphanage. It can be a paper collection for the needs of the school, and help in planting areas, etc. It will be great if a week includes erudite game on the subject of entrepreneurship.
For example, the thematic game “Million Dollar Mind Game”, which questions are devoted to interesting facts from the world of business, the biographies and discoveries of the great strategists in the field of business, the history of the world of brands, etc. The teacher can hold a competition on advertising the class: offer the students a piece of paper (whatman), on which they should tell the story of why their class is the best by whatever means and in whatever form. These tasks do not only develop the imagination, creativity and decorating skills, but also helps the team building.
Also the other option is to hold a contest of advertising slogans or even commercials. The objects of advertising can be familiar things: students should originally advertise the uniforms, school meals, the usual break, etc.
Ideas can be as much as possible to invent, there should be no fear of their conditional connection with the business, because teacher’s goal is not the completion of the forge by business staff, but to familiarize the students with today’s significant sphere of social and economic life of the country.
Remember: “In business, three things are necessary: knowledge, temper, and time.” (Owen Felltham), so holding business lessons on social studies, history, specialized courses or regular workshops the teacher must be sure that could do it very cool! Good luck!