The culminating event of this quarter’s “Dollars and Sense” unit in Open Court is the Fourth Grade Market Day to be held in the cafeteria on December 14. A grade will be awarded in Reading for your student’s participation.We’ll need parent helpers beginning at 12:50 p.m. for setup and 2:45 p.m. for breakdown. Our Room Moms are all over this, so expect a call
If your students wish to use an electrical outlet during Market Day, it’s okay provided an adult is in their booth with them throughout the event. Electricity is not to be used for signage or other advertising, but, as most have requested, for heating foodstuffs.
Individual business ownership is encouraged, but your kiddo may work with a business partner from either class. While no greater than 2 partners is recommended, there may be as many as 3.
The Open Court unit was on entrepreneurship. Therefore, your child keeps any money they make selling their wares.
Now some basics on the four P’s of Marketing:
- Product (or Service). It should appeal to kindergarten through seniors, staff, and parents. Don’t overstock: the market will be open for only 60 to 90 minutes. Products can be handmade, store-bought, baked, or recycled. Previous marketeers have offered brownies, cookies, candy, cupcakes, beads, bracelets, rings, hair tyes, drawings, toys, postcards, outgrown stuffed animals, trading cards, leather goods, 8 ounce cans of pop, and digital photos. They have painted fingernails and faces, sprayed, beaded and braided hair, given massages, and told fortunes.
- Pricing. This is tricky: a price high enough to make it worth their while, but low enough to keep their merchandise moving. Individual shoppers may have only a buck or two to spend during all of market day. One dollar for any item is almost certainly too high. 50 cents is pushing it, but allows a merchant to lower prices if necessary. At a quarter an item they’ll have steady traffic. Some kind hearts sell at discounted prices to the wee ones in kindergarten through first or second grades.
- Place. Biz owners will use cafeteria tables to sell their products and services. Hopefully the setup will allow foot traffic around the ends of tables (i.e., no one will be located down a one way, dead end street). They’ll also need to remember to bring change and a drawer or pouch to store their moolah.
- Promotion. Signage is important. It tells the world what they’re offering. It will be displayed in front of their “booth.” They have been working on advertising copy during workshop and I’ve discovered a common mistake: their text is either too small or too busy. Keep it simple: BIG BOLD LETTERING of the product or service and the price. Business names and elaborate artwork will be lost on the crushing and loud mob of shoppers.