Budding business owners wow the ‘Sharks’ at Rockwood Centennial PS
May 1, 2019
ROCKWOOD, Ontario – Students at Rockwood Centennial Public School have proven themselves to be promising young entrepreneurs, following a project that had them start and pitch their own small businesses.
The students in Miss McGowan’s grade 7 class participated in an extensive six-week long Shark Tank simulation project. The project was co-created with the students and incorporated real-world elements along the way.
Halfway through the project, Brilyn and Sam, small business advisors from RBC, came into the classroom to review the students’ business plans and assessed the costs, expenses, profit margin, projected sales and valuation of their companies to make sure they were on the right track. Brilyn and Sam said they were impressed by the students’ insightful questions, realistic calculations and well thought out plans. Following an RBC template, the students familiarized themselves with different programs to organize their learning into polished business plans.
In order to prepare for successful negotiations with a Shark Tank panel, the students set a class goal to work together and memorize their times tables up to 12, as well as work on a variety of other mental math strategies so the Sharks couldn’t fool them into a bad deal.
On April 15, the day finally came and the students had the realistic experience they were hoping for with an official set, camera crew, music, Shark Tank backdrop and Sharks that took them seriously. On the panel, there was Township of Guelph/Eramosa Mayor Chris White, community business owner Lynn Clack, and Leanne Sullivan, an experienced accountant who has held many management positions with an emphasis on entrepreneurship.
When it came time for the students to wow the judges, they presented with tons of enthusiasm, creativity and confidence, and most importantly, they had fun. To no one’s surprise, every single young entrepreneur got an offer. Thanks to a generous parent, Chris Williston, the realism was taken to the next level and the students have their very own Shark Tank episode to enjoy for years to come.
Congratulations to the grade 7s for working together and encouraging each other to be their best selves. They pushed their limits and completely dedicated themselves to the success of their company.