In 2012, the Consortium for Entrepreneur Education, a group of leaders in the field of entrepreneurship education, ran a survey about the benefits of teaching entrepreneurship. The findings of the survey demonstrated that educators acknowledge the critical role entrepreneurship education plays in preparing youth for their future careers.
The State of Entrepreneurhip Education
The Consortium for Entrepreneur Education ‘s State of Entrepreneurship report discovered invaluable information that sheds light on Entrepreneurship Education; Information that may help convince teachers who are on the fence, to take the leap and try their hand at teaching entrepreneurship.
An insightful finding of the report, was related to the value placed on Entrepreneurship Education by these leaders from the 40 states that participated. 80 percent of the survey respondents indicated that the development of entrepreneurship skills was extremely important to the future. In addition, comments provided on the survey indicated that respondents felt entrepreneurship education should start earlier in the school system.
One of the most insightful findings from the report, was related to teacher preparedness to teach entrepreneurship. 80 percent of respondents said no or they were not sure, when asked if their teacher training/certification had requirements for teacher preparation to support entrepreneurship education. Given that most teachers have not been entrepreneurs it makes sense that training/certification is potentially a major area of need, or alternatively, the use of comprehensive entrepreneurship teaching resources.
Lastly, but equally important to the other findings, was related to the need of more problem-based learning activities and hands-on entrepreneurial experiences to compliment students’ standard education. In fact, respondents demonstrated that there was a dependence on the use of written business plans as an educational approach, which is unfortunate, because an over reliance on this approach could be a limiting aspect of our youth’s education in entrepreneurship.
So now what? We know entrepreneurship education is valuable for our youth’s future, and we know that when we get around to teaching entrepreneurship, it should include problem-based activities and hands-on entrepreneurial experiences. So where is the entrepreneurship education to be found for teachers interested in teaching entrepreneurship?
Entrepreneurship Education Resources For Teachers
Hopefully we can help with that. We want to help teachers who are interested in teaching entrepreneurship, so we’ve provided a few tips along with some excellent resources that will get just about any teacher up to speed on entrepreneurship, without needing to get certified just to teach it. Here is a helpful list of Entrepreneurship Education Resources for Teachers:
- Read at least one of these great books on entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship – A Very Short Introduction by Paul Westhead & Mike Wright, The $100 Start Up by Chris Guillebeau, or Getting Started in Entrepreneurship by Jack Kaplan. All of these books provide superb insight on entrepreneurship.
- Visit a few entrepreneur related websites to brush up and become more entrepreneurship savvy. Entrepreneur.com and Entrepreneurship.org are two really solid entrepreneurship websites.
- Try your hand in entrepreneurship. Give that great idea you’ve been thinking about for so long some wings and get your entrepreneurial hands dirty. If you go this route, you will have the advantage of being able to intimately discuss entrepreneurship with your students. You could discuss what business you chose, why you chose your business, and how you went about making that decision. Plus you can review with your students all of the various processes and decisions you had to address to get your little venture up and running.
- Use pre-created entrepreneurship lesson plans that embody entrepreneurship, and includes activities that encourages creative problem solving, critical thinking, and communication skills. There is nothing wrong with having all the leg work done for you, so long as you familiarize yourself with the details of these types of resources before you implement them.
- Visit the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education’s website. The Consortium for Entrepreneur Education is an organization recognized as the national leader in advocating entrepreneurship education as a lifelong learning process. Through schools and community programs, the Consortium is dedicated to promoting the teaching of skills that are important for success in the 21st century, by encouraging the merits of entrepreneurial education to youth across the country. As a teacher interested in teaching entrepreneurship you’ll be able to find an answer to most of your questions and concerns about all things related to entrepreneurship education.
As the a number of educators who realize the potential for using entrepreneurship as a vehicle to teach other vital life-skills grows, entrepreneurship education for teachers will become increasingly important. Even though this is not an exhaustive list, it provides enough resources to get teachers headed in the right direction quickly, making way for the teaching of entrepreneurship education sooner rather than later.
Do you have any tips , suggestions, or entrepreneurship education resources for teachers that you would like to share?
Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education (2012, February) The State of Entrepreneurship Education. Colombus, OH.
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