Me: School Teacher

That’s right. All next week, an hour per day. My wife’s 5th grade class. For years she’s been telling me about the Junior Achievement program to bring business and economics to the classroom. There’s a different curriculum for each grade level and upon a cursory review of the 5th grade material, it’s pretty good. Of course, I’ll be adding an insight or two of my own <grin>.

We’ll see how it goes and I shall report.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. allan on May 12, 2006 at 21:53

    That is a class I would enjoy attending.

    One week may be enough to plant some interesting seeds.

  2. Lydia on May 13, 2006 at 04:36

    Good luck! If all else fails, go with the toilet humor. You'll at least win the 5th grade boys over. 🙂

  3. Chad Gramling on May 13, 2006 at 10:25

    You won't regret it. I have been a classroom consultant for JW twice and got a lot out of it both times. Unfortunately, I have not had the time to do it again, but did enjoy both sessions. Best of luck.

  4. Bill White on May 14, 2006 at 01:32

    I got my business start in Junior Achievement in high school. It was a great experience. I think it's awesome that you are stepping up to bat!

    Being an E-biz coach, I'm thinking you might have just inspired me to check into it as well. Thanks for that!

    All the best!
    Bill White

  5. Chris on May 14, 2006 at 15:18

    Uh oh….Don't get your wife in trouble, ok?

    My Blog

  6. Greg Swann on May 14, 2006 at 21:35

    Alas, JA ain't what it was when we were young. In those days, it was after-school, off-campus, and a team of executives from a local company would help kids form their own companies. I was VP of Manufacturing in my company for the two years I did it. Both years, our companies were extreme performers. We were each making hundreds of dollars a week for two hours on Wednesday nights and a few hours on Saturday and Sunday spent selling.

    Our first year we made a truly superior windshield de-icer that cost $0.15 a bottle to make and $2.00 to buy, cheaper in quantity. There are people my old home town who bought cases of the stuff–it was that good–and they still use it every winter. Ethylene glycol, alcohol and water if you want to make your own.

    The second year brought even greater profits. It was 1976, so we took uncirculated bicentennial coins and mounted them in jewelry mounts. Three cents hardware, two cents labor, plus the coin and sell at huge prices. I did the annual report that year, as well, which was also an education.

    The idea was to teach entrepreneurship–with money as the best teacher. By now, at least in Phoenix, JA is just another boring activity in school.

    One suggestion, if I might: Talk about how much money you make, how you got it and what you do with it. I can make a great argument that education is its own reward, but for a bored kid who finds everything at school unrewarding, simply talking about wealth and how to get it through prepration amd application should be an eye-opener.

  7. Richard Nikoley on May 15, 2006 at 09:59

    I have the advantage of going to a 5th grade class full of high-achieving kids of high-achieving parents (mostly engineers — software and hardware). I know there are a number who consider people like Jobs and Gates their heroes and role models. That's saying something.

    This is going to be heavily focused on money. Since we can't actually do a real business, we can at least "run the numbers" for a bunch of different kinds of businesses. I'll give sway to the curriculum as needed, but for the most part we're going to talk business as business is.

    There's a whole supplemental book on "business ethics" which dwarfs the size of the main curriculum. You can just imagine the tone of that thing. I glanced through it and there are some decent things in it, but the premise of the thing is way, way off, of course. Ethic #1 is that the business exists for the benefit of the owner(s).

  8. tim on January 28, 2007 at 15:28

    I sure would love more info on the window deicer. How it was made and such. In the midwest we are getting hammerd with ice and finding window deicer is tough. If you would e-mail me the info sure would apreciate it.

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