Proactive teachers are always on the hunt of the best resources to share with their pupils. With a lot of hype surround enterprise education, particularly at a primary level, and with few tried and tested resources available, it can be a difficult task to find the best. Naturally, we think Clever Tykes produces the best enterprise resources for primary schools! But what is it that makes them good? If you already have the Clever Tykes books and resources or if you’re looking for more ways of inspiring and empowering students, what should you be looking out for in other enterprise resources?
The best enterprise resources for primary schools
The best enterprise resources will have a number of important traits which help children understand what enterprise is and how it relates to both real life and other subjects in the primary curriculum. Not only that, the best resources will help you, the teacher, deliver enterprise effectively so we need to get this right! Here are the top four important traits:
1. Enterprise is built in to the curriculum – not squished in on top of everything else
If you’re a teacher, you’ll be well aware of timetabling pressures. The school day is not getting any longer and more and more subjects are being crammed into it – only this week have we seen MPs campaigning for sex education to be taught in primary schools. If enterprise learning requires discreet lessons, your precious time on other important subjects is going to be strained and you might have to restrict it to after school enterprise clubs. Whilst these after school clubs are a great way of delivering enterprise education, wouldn’t it be great to be able to smoothly integrate enterprise into the timetable?
This means that the best enterprise resources should clearly identify where they fit into the primary curriculum, whether this through PSHE/citizenship or through integration into parts of other lesson like maths (financial literacy), art & design (advertising/marketing) or English/creative writing (anything is possible!).
Read more about my thoughts on why enterprise should not be on the curriculum here.
Code-it Cody looking delighted with his game “Hunter Lion”
2. Enterprise should make teaching and learning easier!
Enterprise resources must be clear about what the learning outcomes of each session are and how they will be achieved. Whilst enterprise learning should not be overly prescriptive (see point 3), it must still conform to the processes of effective teaching and learning. As a teacher, having the tools to deliver effective lessons is far more important than the lessons’s content itself.
This means that the quality of resources must be high and there should be scope to improve existing subject delivery. Enterprise education has the power to bring maths lessons to life and provide real purpose to art & design as well as developing key life skills with the correct choice of exercises.
This is really important:
3. The best enterprise resources should encourage creativity and subjective thinking
‘Right’ and ‘wrong’ are words we should avoid using when it comes to enterprise education. Creativity and trying new things are the most important elements of enterprise and mistakes should be valued and learned from. Entrepreneurs have a certain mindset which helps them challenge what already exists and makes them want to change things. In order to make this change, a future state or situation must be imagined and this takes a huge amount of creativity followed by belief in your idea.
Whether these ideas are good or not is often entirely subjective and people have found success in the most unlikely of circumstances with weird and wonderful products or services. This is why as we deliver enterprise education, we can’t adhere too closely to “matter of fact” teaching resources but merely a framework with some clear directions. Even with subjective topics and discussion-based tasks, there can still be ways of assessing how advanced a child is at the subject as well as ways of developing and challenging them.
4. Consistency is the key
Interestingly, there are a number of enterprise education providers who deliver one-off sessions to primary schools in the form of an enterprise day. Children learn some great lessons from these days and being off timetable adds to the creative and positive environment required for entrepreneurship. However, in order to really promote a culture of enterprising thinking and behaviour, enterprise education must be integrated into schooling on a regular basis. This means that the best enterprise resources for primary schools will have a structure allowing teaching and learning of enterprise over a term or year and compliment additional enterprise days.
So what does this all mean?
All of the points are interconnected. High-quality resources will make teaching easier and more effective meaning you’ll want to integrate them into your daily schedule. The best resources will fit into the curriculum creating that much needed consistency and bring creativity to a range of subjects without being something extra to teach! There are a number of ways schools can introduce enterprise education, for more reading see if your school is doing any of these things.
We really hope this has been of some help and happy hunting for the best resources out there. If you’d like to get your hands on the Clever Tykes school bundle, head over to our enterprise teaching resources page.