The ‘extra mile’
For more than a decade, students in Julie Mosher’s combined fifth and sixth grade class at Little Flower Catholic School in Rugby have been required to do a project.
The students get to choose which project they do themselves, and it can be an innovation, an experiment or a business venture. They later make presentations at an education event put on by Marketplace for Kids.
Mosher said she read about Marketplace for Kids in her first year of teaching, and that for the students it’s an opportunity.
“It helps kids to learn, it gives them an opportunity to either build something, make something, write something, to do something that’s important to them and they have a passion for and then present that to other people,” said Mosher. “So it builds skills in speaking and builds skills in thinking.”
After the first year of going, Mosher said she was “hooked,” and stuck with it ever since.
“I was in awe of what kids can do when you give them the opportunity to do something that they have a passion for,” Mosher said.
At a recent Marketplace event, Mosher received recognition. Mosher received the “Extra Mile” award for the 2017-18 school year, which recognizes projects in entrepreneurship.
Mosher has observed that entrepreneurship projects have increased since she has started Marketplace projects.
Some notable projects this year include students who made soaps and scrubs from natural ingredients, and a student who built a computer the previous year and tried to make a computer game this year.
“It was a big learning process because a lot he had to learn and teach himself,” Mosher said, adding that the student’s game was in the process of being finished prior to presentation.
The project process begins after students return from Christmas vacation, where Mosher and students talk about and look at problems to solve. Students are to choose a project by the end of January, although Mosher said what projects they choose may not always end up being what they present at Marketplace.
After projects have been chosen, Mosher uses questions to guide students through as they make progress.
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