Team 54 Students Operate Business, Donate Profits
Team 54 showcases their wares at the annual IU13 Winter Bazaar.
Students in Andrea Rutledge’s 5th grade class have been growing their interpersonal skills through the real world application of operating a mini-business. Students combined academic skills such as fractions from math and figurative language from reading with functional skills such as idioms from speech therapy and fine motor skills from occupational therapy to establish a mini-business, Team 54, the classroom number. In addition to writing donation letters, creating products, producing a commercial, and calculating costs and profits, most importantly students learned how to interact with different types of people, a true life skill that was incorporated throughout. Students created jars of goodies call “A Jar Full of Sunshine” containing all yellow cheerful items, and “Chill Pills” containing individually wrapped candies. Team 54 attended the IU13 Winter Bazaar on 12/1/16 with other mini-businesses from around the county to sell and shop. They engaged customers and processed transactions using a real cash register. “Fostering soft skills like team work, flexibility, and verbal communication is, in my opinion, even more important than just knowledge and skills. How to deal with people is a desirable quality and operating the mini-business gives the kids an opportunity for genuine, authentic interactions. I saw engagement, motivation, and self-confidence build.”
They discussed the season of giving and decided to do something good not only for the class (future field trips) but also for the community. On Friday, December 23, 2016 the kids presented a donation from our profits to A Week Away, which was founded by a former Hans Herr student, Caleb Walker, who passed away from cancer. He was gifted a week away by a friend and realized that others facing life threatening illnesses needed a break too. A representative visited the classroom to receive the check and discuss how it will be used to give a family respite from their everyday battle. Remaining profits will be used for community-based instruction field trips, which students are in the process of planning.
The class also set up a Donor’s Choose page to assist in attaining materials for the classroom. In the era of frequent assessments students, understandably, become easily overwhelmed. The students are learning how to self-regulate with coping skills from a “toolbox” of strategies. They have used yoga, therapy dogs, and controlled breathing as methods to calm the children during stressful times. The class is set a page requesting essential oils and diffusers which will give the students yet another opportunity to experience a calmer more relaxed learning environment.
“While I may not be able to control the copious testing that children endure, I can influence their surroundings and build up their self-esteem by showing them how to approach difficult situations in healthy ways.” Your support for our classroom would provide us with a new means to make an uncomfortable situation more manageable. Please visit : www.donorschoose.org/project/scents-that-soothe.
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Lampeter-Strasburg School District
1600 Book Rd., Lancaster PA 17602
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