Stepping into Business Launch Entreprenaws
SOCIAL ENTERPRISE LAUNCHES APP MAKING BUSINESS CHILD’S PLAY
Stepping into Business, a Social Enterprise set up in Manchester in 2014 has just made it’s first move online, helping children learn about business in a new gaming app. After working in schools across the country teaching children from age 6 to age 18 about business and life skills they won funding from Innovate Uk to develop Entreprenaws last year.
Dinah Turner, Director of Stepping into Business told us, “We were already working with teachers in schools delivering enterprise and life skill programmes and as parents we know how much children like playing games on their mobile devices and tablets, so when Innovate UK asked for a company to research and develop an app for teaching young people about business, we applied and we were delighted to be successful! It’s been a great experience and we have just launched our first game product onto the App Stores.”
The game was built with Manchester Digital Agency StardotStar, who have experience of delivering other games for clients like the BBC and also Catalyst Psychology, educational psychologists based in Didsbury, who have helped to design the learning in the game and assess how it worked in tests.
“We worked with students, teachers and parents throughout the design process,” explains Dinah, “testing everything as we went and listening to the feedback we had from the most important people - the children! They don't sugar coat - if they don't like something, they tell you! It has been invaluable to work with them in schools across the North West.”
In St Annes RC Primary school, the App was tested with Year 6 groups age 10 and 11.
“It’s a really good game and it helps teach me about how to make money” explained Daniel, one of the world’s next budding business people!
“It’s been really interesting for me to see how the children use mental maths and how they try new things out in a game that they just wouldn’t do in class” explained Deputy Head Teacher Stuart Owen.
“A big part of the learning of the game is about experimenting” said Dinah, “the children have an opportunity to try something, see what happens and then try something else. We don’t provide lots of instruction about what they should do, we encourage them to have a go and get stuck in. When we’ve played the game with older students at University level, here in Manchester, we’ve noticed they are are lot less likely to take a risk than the younger students, perhaps because they’re worried about failing… it’s an interesting dynamic!”
Stepping into Business is using funds raised from Entreprenaws downloads to support more schools to complete their classroom business programmes.
Explaining the importance of this type of learning, Dinah added: “Enterprise, business and life skills are important because our children are growing up in a world that is changing fast and they need to be adaptable problem solvers as well as financially astute. The programmes we have developed again put the child in control of their own experience and they are free to try, fail and learn from their mistakes and take responsibility for their own business.”
Anthony Rae, Head Teacher of Seymour Park Community Primary School in Trafford told us, “ The Stepping into Business experience has been far more than just another fun project, it has been life affirming and enhancing; it has given the children opportunities to explore their own and others shared potential, and has brought a greater level of joy and anticipation to the children's collaborative learning than ever before.”
Entreprenaws is also part of the BETT Futures exhibition in January at London’s Excel Centre, where education innovation is shown off to a global audience.