Should we teach children entrepreneurial skills?

Should we teach children entrepreneurial skills?

On 20th November – Universal Children’s Day, Sheatwork observes that it is important to create awareness in children about entrepreneurship

On 20th November, it is interesting to note that Universal Children’s Day is observed. Being an annual event, it promotes international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, with the long-term objective of improving children’s welfare.

Going back in history, it was established in 1954. To get the picture correct – on this day in 1959, the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. And in 1989 on the same day, the UN General Assembly also adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

So, this is a suitable occasion to highlight the importance of creating awareness in children about the importance of entrepreneurship, which can go a long way in enhancing the welfare of children.

Why not spur your child’s entrepreneurial curiosity this holiday season?

Walk into a mall, an airport, or a restaurant today, and you will invariably come across children, who are totally engrossed in electronic gadgets – it could be an iPad or a cell phone, or watching something on the TV screen. Is this really alright?

It does cause concern. In fact, recent studies have shown that the amount of time young children spend on electronic gadgets has tripled in the last four years alone. Further studies have shown that young children (8 years and younger), spend on an average up to 4 to 5 hours per day on gadgets, and it is all set to increase in the years to come.

Time has come when the question of getting children interested in more resourceful stuff has become important. To get them involved in activities that can impact their future. And, who wouldn’t want their children to grow up and become independent and successful?

Why should children be taught entrepreneurship early in life?

It’s clear the world needs more innovation and more entrepreneurs. And the skills of entrepreneurship are also good life skills. So how can we teach kids the idea of ‘business’ – to nurture and inspire the next generation of dreamers and thinkers?

Take a reality check. Today, there exists the traditional model of getting a university degree, followed by a stable job. But, after that, how does one ensure an upward climb? Does a steady progression up the career ladder happen these days? There are numerous concern areas that have popped up – population explosion, economic crises, globalization, decreased earning power, dynamic employment markets, AI, employees being laid off and so on. Does this mean today’s generation really has a tough task in the job market? Plus, the future doesn’t seem too rosy….

The answer is – to teach kids about entrepreneurship early in life, so that they can create their own opportunities when the time is ripe.

Encouraging entrepreneurship can turn children into leaders. It can transform them into employers rather than employees and can help them create successful, independent lives through purposeful enterprise. It can indeed, provide children a number of options – to earn a livelihood in a crowded, harsh world.

There are crucial attributes every entrepreneur needs to succeed. Read on about some of those attributes, that can be fostered in your children:

  • Sow the seed of financial literacy

Financial literacy is something that all children need to have today. Unfortunately, schools often don’t give enough attention to this in your child’s education. Rather than leave it to chance, teach your kids about money from an early age, for it will give them a solid foundation in finance. Educate your children about saving and investing and show them how money can be used to make more money!

  • Encourage a keen sense of observation and self-drive

Help your kids recognize that the world around them is full of business opportunities;  and identifying them just requires some careful observation, self-drive and creativity. Employment may not be the answer. Maybe you could ask them to look around and brainstorm ways to create the money through entrepreneurship, as and when when the need arises – like when they aspire to get the latest gadget. Or you could encourage entrepreneurship by asking children to start small projects, which will teach them how to fix prices, market well, spot problems etc. which will give them a hint of the real world.

  • Encourage an attitude of exploration and inquisitiveness

In addition to urging your children to explore their environment, urge them to develop an inquisitive mind and constantly ask questions. Don’t let them get too comfortable with the same solutions for problems. They should study a lot of things and be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things. Children seem to thrive in situations that engage their curiosity and allow them to explore and discover the world around them on their own terms.


They should accept who they are. Children blossom freely, once they are able to discern and be who they are. Encouraging this from an early age, not only builds confidence, but also opens up ways to be more accepting of others around them. All qualities that are needed for a great leader!

So, all the above, will help children become capable of growing into not only successful entrepreneurs, but more importantly, into well-rounded, socially-conscious citizens.

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