Wednesday, June 4, 2014

JA BizTown

The 5th graders in our school district do something called JA BizTown.  It's a whole unit about learning how to use checkbooks, and how to run businesses, and all kinds of things.  The town has many businesses and a fast food restaurant (McDonalds), a tv station, and even a mayor and town hall.  Pretty much the 5th graders take over a whole "town" for a day.  They even apply for the jobs that they will have.

The adult volunteers are required to attend a two hour training.  (Although I should be set for the next time I get to go...?)  In addition, we also get to arrive an hour before the kids do, and it's about a 35 minute drive.  That's fun to arrange when you have kids in school.  Just sayin'.

I arrived, got assigned to a business next door to Emma's Copy Center.  I was in charge of the Supply and Delivery business.  They told me everything I needed to know would be in the binders, and I would be fine.

This is me, all anticipation for the kids to come.  Like my green volunteer smock?
The kids arrived, had an intro, then were turned loose to their business to get their business set up.  We were supposed to have a little start up business meeting, but oh wait.  We are Supply and Delivery, which means we were interrupted with demands for the other business' inventory during that whole 45 minute period.

Then it was time for the Town Meeting, where the Mayor spoke, and each of the business CEOs could say why the kids should check out their place during breaks and spend their paychecks.  You can kind of see Emma giving her speech below:
Over the course of the day, I decided all the information I needed was NOT in the binder.  But we blundered through, and the hectic day passed quickly.  It was fun to see Emma be the CEO of her business.  She was glad that Kendra was her CFO.  Emma didn't spend all of her paycheck during her breaks, which does surprise me a bit.  Everyone, students and volunteers, had the same chicken nugget and applesauce lunch courtesy of McDonalds.  The volunteers had a JA BizTown "dollar" in the smock, so we could go buy ourselves lunch.  I was starving.  I don't usually eat breakfast as early as I did that day.
This was almost at the very end of the day.

I checked Emma out during the closing meeting, so I could just take her home with me.  The good news was announced that all the businesses paid off their business loan, so the day was a success!

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