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A Summer Challenge – Raising Entrepreneurs


This summer is going to be unlike any we have ever had. I am not focused on getting a jump start on next Fall’s schooling, the kids are going to go from school days to lazy days and I am more committed than ever to reigning in our spending.

That is not to say I have completely given up school during the summer. While Sea Cadet will be away all summer working at the summer camp, both Princess and Gymnast will be continuing with math curriculum.

Princess will also complete a Bill of Rights curriculum she started in the fall. (The school district is giving her government credit for completing this course.)

That being said, I am concerned with all the “free” time in this tiny town with very limited things to do. And one of the first things we cut back in our budget was the kids allowance. Those two factors have encouraged me to think outside the box a bit and I have decided to issue a challenge.

Start a Business

I’m going to encourage them to produce some sort of product and sell it online, become young entrepreneurs. I am going to offer each child $100 seed money to start a business this summer. To gain access to this money, they will have to complete a few steps:

  1. Write a semblance of a business plan including a plan of how the money will be spent.
  2. Research and submit a plan for the platform they will use to market and run there business.
  3. Create a sample of the product(s) they wish to sell and do some market research.

Would you add anything to this list?

More the Merrier

Both kids have slowly begun to surround themselves with a group of friends. Opening up this opportunity to their friends might get more traction then just having them do it themselves. Not that I am offering more seed money at this point, but perhaps group run businesses?

As I’ve been creating this idea, I am also creating a curriculum geared toward middle school aged kids. As an entrepreneur for 12 years now, sharing the knowledge acquired through experience might help them create something wonderful while avoiding the pitfalls I encountered.

Getting Crafty

Both of Gymnast and Princess are pretty crafty. I have a feeling they will pursue that side of themselves to build their business. But, hey, they might surprise me, which I’m totally fine with. I will keep you posted on what they choose.

There are lots of resources out their for young entrepreneurs, here are a few I’ve been checking out:

Do you have a young entrepreneur in your family? Are there other resources you would recommend?


  • Reply Mary |

    I remember a friend in high school used to buy candy bars in bulk from Costco to sell at school for a dollar. I guess in this case it’s different since it’ll be summer time, but there’s always selling ice cream at the park?

    • Reply Hope |

      True, unfortunately, this is a VERY small town and there really aren’t any high enough traffic areas for that type of business. But I believe that creating crafts/products will give them a good taste of the work and effort. And there are LOTS of local opportunities and online resources to sell them.

    • Reply Hope |

      That is a great suggestion. Since we don’t have a local chapter, maybe I could get a mentor to come for a day and meet with them all in one day. I will definitely check out this idea!

  • Reply Megan |

    I know several people who ran pretty solid “side” businesses for landscaping services as teens or young adults. You don’t have to mow all that many yards to get a sizable boost to your allowance honestly. I know at least one person turned it into his full time business after school for several years while he sorted out what he wanted to go to school for or do for work.

    Anyway, it takes getting your name out there on facebook groups or flyers etc. It takes planning and effort.

    • Reply Hope |

      I actually thought power washing would be a great business around here! Great minds think alike. Unfortunately, we do not own any landscaping equipment, so that would be a pretty hefty investment up front. And not something I’m willing to invest in at this time.

      With both kids continuing sports through the summer, committing to a regular schedule for someone else ie mowing their lawn would be challenging. And they will *hopefully* be gone for two weeks to camp. But I love this idea if our lives and schedules were a bit more laid back.

  • Reply Anon |

    What about pet sitting/dog walking? Depending on how walkable your town is, of course. I think I made good money when I was an early teen by pet sitting, taking in mail, etc. when neighbors were away. Plus, some fun animal time and good exercise!

    • Reply Hope |

      I’ve actually thought of doing this myself, and it would be great for Princess. However, it would be reliant on my availability to take her to clients houses. (Our neighborhood is not one where she would find alot of business.) And she will be practicing for volleyball and hopefully gone for two weeks to camp…not ideal for committing to a regular schedule for someone else. But I do love this idea. I might do it at some point…exercise for me and paid, sounds like the perfect combination.

  • Reply Alice |

    Hope, have you considered doing a virtual teaching job? With your experience with homeschooling, and your entrepreneurial mindset, surely there is something out there that would work for you. I have a good friend who teaches Spanish for a virtual university and loves it!

So, what do you think ?