How it Works

Alanna Aristotelous, a pupil at Clooncagh National School, Co. Roscommon pictured with 'Sweetie Teddiz' - a handmade teddy with sweets inside - the result of a project undertaken by her class in the Junior Entrepreneur Programme, supported by their teacher Ruth Kelly. 50 Sweetie Teddiz were sold netting the young pupils €152 profit - a healthy investment on their €2 investment. Pupils in the class undertook every part of the project from market research to finance, production, design and sales - and each made a personal investment in the venture. The Clooncagh pupils are among 10,000 around Ireland currently participating in JEP, a not for profit initiative led by Entrepreneur Jerry Kennelly. The programme is supported in Roscommon by entrepreneur Tom Morrisroe.

Learning new life skills

 

Through the JEP curriculum, games and learning aids, pupils get a clear picture of what creating a business is all about. Every step mirrors strands in the primary school curriculum. This means that pupils are not wasting their time or being distracted from important learning. Instead, they’re learning new life skills as well as their core subjects.

 

Thinking like an entrepreneur

 

The learning that takes place during JEP will give children a greater understanding of many things that happen in the real world. They will get to understand how the value of goods and services is created and how skill, talent and creativity can create more than the sum of their parts in an entrepreneurial enterprise. Whether they ever become an entrepreneur or not is irrelevant. They will have a better understanding of what happens in their lives and will have their first opportunity to think in an entrepreneurial fashion. That’s something that will stand to them in their further education and throughout their working lives.

 

Working with a local entrepreneur

 

The programme works closely with the local community – involving local entrepreneurs who share their story and that of their business with the pupils. This puts entrepreneurship in a local and meaningful context. Every pupil gets a chance to uncover their own strengths and play a key role in one of five distinct teams – Finance, Marketing, Design & Production, Sales and Storytelling.

 

Investing in the business

 

Pupils are given the chance to invest a token amount of money in the business – with a view to getting it back with profit, to understand the real impact of risk and reward. When they’re investing their own hard earned few euro(sterling), they want to make sure they get it back – hopefully with profit.

The programme culminates in showcase day, when the learning, hard work and team spirit come together. That’s when family, the rest of the school and community get a chance to see the results of all the hard work done during the programme.

Run by Entrepreneurs

 

Successful entrepreneurs throughout the island of Ireland are championing the rollout of the programme in their counties, by becoming JEP County Partners. With the support of the County Partner, JEP is delivered without any cost to parents or schools in the participating counties.

 

Creative Business Ideas

Children use their creativity to come up with individual business ideas, they come together as a class to choose one idea and then work to turn this idea into reality over a 12-16 week period. They’ve got to do the hard work – researching what customers really want, working out their costs and how much to charge for it. They figure out what they’re good at and try to use those skills to play their part in a team. All along the way, they’ve got the support of their classmates, teachers and family.

Maddie Flynn a pupil at Rush and Lusk Educate Together National School pictured with 'Brownie Boxes' - a kit of ingredients to make the perfect brownies - the result of a project undertaken by her class in the Junior Entrepreneur Programme, supported by their teachers Grainne Craig and Fiona O'Brien. Each child invested €3 and the class expects to make a profit of  €150 in profit. Pupils in the class undertook every part of the project from market research to finance, production, design and sales. The Rush & Lusk pupils are among 10,000 around Ireland currently participating in JEP, a not for profit initiative led by Entrepreneur Jerry Kennelly. The programme is supported in One4all group and its CEO Michael Dawson.
Step 1
Discover

The class is introduced to the idea of entrepreneurship and identify local entrepreneurs in their area.

Step 2
Ideas

Pupils brainstorm, they present their ideas to a panel and choose the project that they’re going to turn into reality.

Step 3
Inspire

A local business person visits the classroom to share their business story.

Step 4
Research

Pupils research their idea and learn about surveys and their market.

Step 5
Teams

Pupils learn about their talents and skills and those of their classmates.

Step 6
Create

Pupils turn their idea into a reality by designing, producing, costing, creating, marketing and selling their product/service at a fun showcase day.

Step 7
Showcase

Pupils evaluate the project and reflect on their achievements.