JEP departs from traditional teaching, allowing the teachers become facilitators, letting pupils think freely and understand what entrepreneurship really means. Children use their creativity to come up with individual business ideas, they come together as a class to choose one idea and then work as a team to turn the idea into reality over a 12-16 week period. They meet with a local entrepreneur to hear their story and ask questions.
Pupils carry out market research to test and refine their project idea before moving on to the next step. Then the really great personal development work starts; pupils identify their unique strengths and talents and work out how they can best contribute to the business. They pupils break into five teams: Finance, Marketing, Design & Production, Sales and Storytelling. Before going on to make and sell their product. They invest a small amount of their own money, which they hope to recoup with a profit. They calculate their estimated costs and sales, which they compare with their actual results at the end of the programme. The programme culminates in the school show case day, when the learning, hard work and creativity together and family, the rest of the school and the wider community are invited to enjoy the results.
The programme is structured to facilitate every child’s participation throughout the process. There are many different forms of intelligence and creativity and through JEP many children become more aware of their own unique skills and talents for the first time and find a way to shine. In addition to covering core aspects of the curriculum in a novel and engaging way, teachers have reported marked developments in confidence, team building, communications and independence in children who have participated.
Room 2 and Room 3 participated in the JEP Programme this year. Room 2 made Cookie Jars and Room 3 made charm bracelets.. They went to the Knightsbrook in Trim for an award ceremony. They received a plaque and a flag for the school. Well done to Ms Collins and Ms O’Connor for guiding the children throughout the year.