Never Tell Your Child They Are Smart

That's right! No catch. No bait and switch. Truly, never tell your child they are smart.

I, like many parents, have an innate fear that I will screw up my child in some way. One day, I will say that one thing that completely screws them up. I will be having a bad day, my patience will be low and BAM. It will fly out of my mouth and I will never be able to take it back. Their confidence will plummet, they will throw it back at me when they are 18 and angry at me, and any sadness they have, I know it will because I failed them that day.

Well, that may happen, but I have something significantly more scary to share with you. In fact, you have almost with certainty, already "screwed" them up and it was during a moment that you were calm, thoughtful and even fully conscious of the words coming out of your mouth. You deliberately said these words with the intention of helping them, boosting their confidence and making them smile.

One of the greatest books I have read on parenting is not really a parenting book at all. It's called Mindset and it's by Carol Dweck. I read this book upon recommendation by someone I trust and it is one that I believe every parent, employer/boss, teacher or influencer of any kind should read. In fact, even if you are not an influencer to others, you are to yourself. You determine your own values, self worth and potential. The trouble is, most of these "decisions" that you made around these topics, were suggested to you by others, and you adopted them to heart.

Do you remember that time they got an A in spelling and you told them how smart they are?
Or what about that time she hit the baseball and got a home run and you told them they were the best player that day?
Oh, and what about that time he did that school play and you told them, "you're a natural! I can't believe how great you are at that. I am so proud of you!"

Well, If you have said any of the previous statements, you have screwed up your kids. Crazy right?!?! I know! It scared the poop out of me so I wanted to understand why.

To save my typing and missing some key points, I very strongly encourage you to watch the video below. It is a summary of a study on Praise for Intelligence vs Praise for Effort and the INSTANT ramifications of it. If you have a Fixed mindset yourself, which most of us do, this will be troubling. But if you have or want to develop a Growth Mindset, you will find this incredibly empowering and want to learn more.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWv1VdDeoRY

This was such a simple study that was all done in one day that had such dramatic results, for better or worse. Can you imagine days, weeks and months of this subtle change in praise and the positive results that could come if they heard it from teachers, coaches and of course, parents?

Build a Biz Kids trains our facilitators in a growth mindset and are continuing to learn more and more about our impact on students. We would like to encourage the parents of our students to join us in learning and practicing the subtle difference and see the incredible results.

My son would often give up very early on projects and not want to strive to go the extra mile on something like handmade birthday cards, school projects, and yes, even his business when taking our program. But once we discovered that some of this lack of effort might actually be our fault, we made a change, and the results were immediate!

Last week he, not only sat with no iPad or TV in the background, he completed his first ever model airplane. He painted and glued and and did everything he could until he had to wait for everything to dry. He even had a bit of a meltdown when he thought he broke a piece but the next time he was home with time to work on it, he couldn't wait to get back to it! Now he is looking to find the perfect model car to take on next.

We still catch ourselves when talking about how he played at baseball or in his school play wanting to tell him how amazing the results were, but we are getting faster and faster to catch ourselves and praise him on the effort he put into going to baseball practice each day; working really hard on remembering his lines for the play by reciting them in the car on the way to school and how impressed we are by the effort and creativity it took for him to come up with such unique ideas for his handmade birthday cards.

While not everyone in his life may understand fixed vs growth mindset or praising on effort rather than results, as parents, it starts at home. To date, this has been one of the most important blogs we have written and we really hope you will watch the video above to learn more. I really hope you will read the Book Mindset as well. We get zero dollars by promoting it.

Lastly, we hope that you realize that as a parent, an employee, as a friend, an artist, an entrepreneur and all of the other titles you hold, you, too, may have a fixed mindset based on fixed praise and values you were given as a child, and even as an adult. But with awareness and persistence, you can reprogram yourself to want more, do more, and have greater confidence to take on new challenges.

We wish you growth


This KidPreneur Has More Ingenuity Than Most Adult-Preneurs

This weekend, many of our graduates came out to another great event where they could set up their businesses and practice their skills while earning real money. (Earn while you Learn is a great motto to live by)

Everyone arrived and was given direction on where their tables were and started setting up. As it so happens, this event spread out into two areas: Outdoors with the music and festivities, and inside, around the corner and up a very long set of stairs to an unmarked location. Half of our graduates ended up outside, the others were inside upstairs along with a few other KidPreneur Businesses.

It was hard to tell what traffic was going to be like on the day in both areas. Would it get so hot that everyone went inside, or didn't come out at all? Or would they just stick to the sunshine and the businesses upstairs would get lighter traffic than the rest. Here's the thing. As an entrepreneur, you make your own success. That's it. Period.

Over the years consulting with assorted business owners, understanding that success is in their hands is a concept they believe in the good times, but, when it get's tough, their commentary can change to all sorts of justifying or complaining. My competitor is poaching my clients. Customers don't understand why my products are so good. The stores wont return my calls and buy my product. My Sales Reps wont do what I tell them to.

And the list goes on.

But for the ones who get it, their mind is always in solution mode. Is there a vendor outside who didn't show up? Can I move my business out there? Yes? No? It never hurts to ask. What about making your own signs? Posting them up to direct customers up to your table? Or best of all, what if you bring yourself, to them!

Well that is what two of these KidPreneurs did! One of our graduates, Tiaga, was selling Snowcones. An amazing ideas that would be sure to sell well on a hot day like it was. What did he do? He took 2 of his posters downstairs and posted them with arrows on the doors downstairs to lead people up. Then he took a 3rd sign and walked around with it until a customer wanted what he was selling. He would walk with him upstairs, make his order and then do it all over again!

Another Kid Vendor was selling bubble tea. He decided to make 4 orders in assorted flavours and then walk downstairs to sell them directly to customers. Once sold out, he came back up stairs, made some more and did it all over again.

There were so many comments from the adult vendors about these kids who were business savvy well beyond their years. They were excited about their businesses and couldn't wait to make the day work for them. On top of that, a portion of all of Tiaga's profits always go to the Children's Hospital.

So today, as you sit at your desk and wish that you had more customers, or more calls coming in, or whatever it is, be Tiaga. How can you force results, rather than wishing it would work the way we see it in the movies. We are so proud and can't wait to see what these kids go onto do next!

Tiaga attended our Summer Camp & Fall Semester Programming. Both are open for registration now.

View our Program Descriptions Here


Coming to a City Near You!

Build a Biz Kids is Growing!

That's right! We are expanding from 3 cities to 10 this fall! If you live anywhere in the lower mainland from Maple Ridge to West Vancouver, we will have a venue convenient for you and your KidPreneur this fall, 2019!

Over the next few weeks, we will be releasing each cities dates & venues and opening up registration.

Stay Tuned and get ready! Your KidPreneur is going to amaze you with what they are capable of this Fall!

 

To be the first to know, be sure to Sign Up for our Newsletter and Like Us on Facebook!


What About After Their Business Program?

We are so excited to meet & work with each and every child who enters into a Build a Biz Kids Program, but we are EVEN MORE excited to see what they go on to do afterwards!

Our mission is to help students learn the critical skills required to take action on their ideas while helping them develop empathy for the world around them. Our programs do not just teach theory, but practice Action! But practice in learning lab can only go so far. We need our students to identify opportunities outside of our program and in their real lives. That's practice; that is putting in their 10,000 hours to mastery.

Every graduate, & their parents from one of our programs, is invited to a very special Facebook Group that focuses on future development. Our students have been notified of additional opportunities to run their businesses throughout their communities. They have also been invited to additional education events and so much more!

In just the last week, our students have been able to participate in 2 incredible opportunities. Last weekend, our students set up shop and joined in a Real Adult Handmade Market through the Tri Cities Collective! That's right! They got to set up their businesses right next to adults who do this kind of thing all the time to make profit and provide for their families. That is real world experience that they will reflect on for years.

But my most favorite activity our students were invited to was a Pitch Competition hosted by SingularityU & I-onConnect. That's right, a real live Dragons Den where 5 finalists got to pitch their businesses to a panel of 6 judges and the winner walked away with $40k and support to make their business really take off. For a KidPreneur of 10 or 11 to get to watch something like that was incredible to see. It was some high tech content, in some cases, and big picture ideas, but they all "got it". They not only got it, they asked great follow up questions, had their own opinions based on what they heard, and overall, kept remarking how exciting it all was.

Kids, and people in general, only know that which they are exposed to. In just 1 week, Build a Biz Kids Students were able to rub shoulders running their businesses alongside as equals to adults who have been doing it for years. They were able to learn from these veterans on what works and how they can improve. They were also given the "thumbs up" from the winner of the pitch competition and told that they could do this too. That they could have an idea, learn how to make a great pitch, and that others who believe in what you believe will help you make it a reality.

All in all, this week has been a busy one, but full of momentous moments that will surely stick with these lucky students for years to come and shape the many spectacular things they do.

We invite you and your children to become a part of our alumni. Expose them to all that is possible in the world. Show them what you wish you were shown as a child. Give them the opportunity to learn the skills, that took us 10 and 20 years to learn, now.

Summer camps are open for registration online. Our fall KidPreneur Programs will be opening for registration soon. Be sure to like us on Facebook & Sign Up for our Newsletter so you wont miss any of these great opportunities.

We look forward to meeting you and your KidPreneur soon!


A Letter To Our Students & Kids Everywhere For 2019

A letter to Children in communities everywhere.

Congratulations to our students and children everywhere for everything you have learned and experienced in 2018! Just think of where you started last year and all that you have learned.

Maybe you were introduced to multiplication and division last year. Maybe you got to jump off the diving board for the first time or drive a go cart! Did you score your first goal in soccer or catch a fish? Maybe you read your first book with no pictures and can spell words that are 10 letters long now! I bet you were even introduced to some pretty BIG concepts like what nutrition is, why water is important and shouldn't be wasted and that situations are not always good or bad, black or white but that sometimes there is grey area that should be considered.

Over the next few years, you will continue to grow your mind, expand your thinking, and experience activities and learn new skills that seemed so daunting once before. But once you take that leap and do it for the first time, suddenly you will realize that you can overcome anything just by trying, practicing and taking a chance on yourself.

All of us at Build a Biz Kids are so proud and excited for what's to come for you. 2019 will be great, but it is still just the beginning of what we know you will take on and conquer.

So much of growing up is just understanding how BIG and VAST the world is around you. How kids your age live and learn differently in other countries compared to how you live and learn here. That the number of sports, dance, science, music, professions, ideas and FUN you have been exposed to is just .0001% of all of the incredible things you have yet to see and be amazed by.

You have so much to look forward to and the best part, it never ends! You will always get to look forward to learning something new every single day and find something new that get's you so excited you can't even sit in your seat! Every single day you have the chance to find something that will expand your mind and make the world around you a little better, a little kinder, and little more beautiful.

Are you excited for today? Are you excited to learn something new that will make you and someone you love smile?

Well, here's the thing. Sometimes, if we don't practice finding something new each day, if we don't exercise our brains to find something every day that makes us smile, it forgets how to do it. Doesn't that sound sad? Wouldn't that be terrible if we couldn't learn anything new?

At Build a Biz Kids, we want you to never stop learning. We want you to find something new every day that makes you smile and then have so much fun learning how to do it yourself through practice. It takes practice every day to get better but if you do it enough, just like math or reading or playing sports or playing a video game, it get's easier and even more fun!

To our wonderful students and children everywhere who are about to take on 2019 and learn and grow and hopefully have even more fun then last year, we wish you a Happy New! Take on the world, it is your playground, but only if you never stop learning.

Sincerely, your biggest fans,

The Team at Build a Biz Kids


Trial & Error

Have we forgotten how to let kids fail?

I always want to teach my son how to do everything in the most efficient way. I struggle to stop myself from correcting him before he begins. There is a quote from the developmental psychologist Gordon Neufeld “Never do for a child what a child believes they can do for themselves.” Although I believe this quote speaks to a greater need of empowering our children, it also touches on how the process of trial and error is a powerful learning tool.

In the idea stage of our program, everyone is an expert. They know exactly what their product will look like, what steps to take to make that product and how easy it will be. However, come prototype day, there is a lot of learning. The ingredients were hard to find, the process took longer than expected, there was an issue with the way the materials combined and now our KidPreneurs have to find a solution.

Exhibit A, one of the greatest soap mixing entrepreneurs of our time! Or in other words, my son who wants to make soap as his business idea for his program.

For weeks he went back and forth on which Pintrest soap he wanted to try and recreate and how it would look, feel, and smell. But while shopping for ingredients, he discovered there are way more options for colours, smells and ingredients (shea butter vs. goats milk, lavender vs cinnamon, red vs red and blue swirl) and everything was in it's raw form which looks a lot different than his Pintrest wall.  Every decision he makes on these ingredients will impact the final product. He had to figure out which combination would produce the vision he had in his mind and was determined to create.

After making his careful selection, he took his ingredients home to experiment. Even though this budding entrepreneur loves the process of experimenting and exploring, he was disappointed his first batch of soap looked nothing like the image he has held in his mind for weeks. The colors didn't mix right and the soap had bubbles and an uneven finish. So began the work of trouble shooting and refining the process.

Perhaps mixing the colors into the soap and then pouring into the molds will work best. The white soap is thicker than the clear soap so maybe it needs to be heated longer. What about a 2 color swirl effect?

He was much more satisfied with his second bath of soap and seeing how a new technique could change the outcome.

I firmly believe that if the first iteration of soap was exactly as planned, our KidPreneur would have missed an exciting opportunity for personal growth. What he learned through through this process is a level of confidence that he can find a way to achieve his vision with enough time, thought and a second attempt.

What every entrepreneur should hold dear is the notion that any vision is possible if they are willing to put in the time and effort for trial and error. If we can show kids that the greatest reward comes after effort and tenacity, then imagine how much more of the world they will get to experience.


OH! What If .....???

“Oh! What if….?”

The most amazing part about working with kids is that they have yet to learn what the box is and are not limited to what ideas are “in the box” or “out of the box” thinking.

Only two weeks into our after-school program launch and I’ve found a new favorite phrase. “Oh! What if….?” It’s a phrase that comes with bright excited eyes and usually the student is bouncing a little in their chair. This phrase “oh! What if….?” Is the beginning of possibility and an exercise in creative showcasing.

Problem solving is a creative process and, in our KidPreneur programming, we focus on seeing problems as opportunities to be creative. In yesterday’s class we presented several everyday problems like spilled milk, muddy dog paws, sand on the beach towel and muffins that stick to the wrapper. In teams, the kids began to develop new innovative products to address these problems. Once the kids got a few safe ideas out of the way and were over the fear of being “wrong” the energy in the room began to soar as ideas began to flow.

“We can’t think of anything to clean a dog’s muddy paws”, quickly became “Oh! What if we had socks the dog could wear!”

That’s when the ideas began to flow “Oh! What if we had a brush that sprayed water to get the mud off….. Oh! What if it included a soap dispenser…? Oh! What if it also attached to a hose… Oh! And what if it also blew bubbles to entertain the dog… Oh! Or what if it dispenses a dog treat…”

I anticipate that I will have a new favorite phrases and parts of the program every week but for now, I am inspired by watching these kids discover their creative authority as they take ownership of their ideas a present them to the class. As the kids left for the day, there was an excitement and anticipation for the opportunities in front of them and I could tell the thoughts of “oh! What if…?” was going home with them and I hope this empowerment stays with these KidPreneurs long after the program.


No Tech Zone After School Programs - Why We Do It

Too much screen time is often a common complaint among parents concerning their children. Oddly, however, some parents wonder how we can run a program on Entrepreneurship and teach them how to start their own business without the use of tech in this modern age.

I wanted to give a short and sweet reason for why that is and let you know how we believe technology fits in. With our Incredible after school programs starting just around the corner (register soon to save your child's seat!)

Technology is, without a doubt, a powerful business tool that has enabled businesses to grow faster, extend their reach to more customers, and allowed them to streamline otherwise huge expenses in way of manufacturing, customer ordering and so on. It's basically mandatory if you want to start or own 99.98% of businesses out there today and be successful. So why don't we, not only encourage the use of technology, but ban it, from our Learning Labs?

Simple. Learning technology has nothing to do with learning to become an entrepreneur.

Here is what I mean.

We are teaching the understanding, methodology, and problem solving. savvy skills required to launch a small business. Businesses don't tend to fail because of technology (unless they blow their budgets on unnecessary tech). They fail do to not understanding why they are doing something, skipping crucial steps (such as testing their product) and confusing their customer.

We want kids to be able to dive in and build their business quickly so they can learn, implement, adjust, learn, implement, adjust and so on.

Here is an example. Our students will be coming up with a name for their business, a logo and then carrying that forward onto their marketing signage and packaging of their products. We could set them up with design software and have them go back and forth to learn the program and try to create the desired look that isn't the point of the exercise.

The point is to learn what branding is, how it impacts a consumers perception of what you are offering, and why consistency and brand integrity is key. Whether it's computer generated or creatively drawn by hand doesn't matter. They can learn more about creating a more crisp and professional look if they decide to pursue their business further after their program. We need them to understand why, take action, gain a reaction and feedback from customers, reflect, and do it again.

Beside, many of our students take our program and start a business but by the end, decide they want to try a different business, or pursue their current one by stepping it up a notch. Wasted time learning new programming can slow them down and, frankly, be frustrating when all you want to see is progress.

We are very excited about our upcoming after school programming, and especially the Kids' Market Day where everything they have learned is applied. As we develop more and more budding young entrepreneurs, we look forward to offering additional courses that can develop their base level skills and demonstrate the power of technology, when it's used safely and effectively.

For more information on our After School Programs, Click Here

For our current Fall Schedule that is Registering Online NOW, Click Here


4 Successful Summer Camps, Over $1000 Raised for Charities

What a Summer!!??!! A HUGE thank you to all of our parents, students & community who supported our KidPreneur Summer Camps! And of course, a Gigantic thank you to Vancity for the support and use of their facilities and our friends at each of the local grocers we were able to set up shop with! We couldn't have done it without you.

This summer, Vancity nominated 4 incredible local charities that the students raised money for through their lessons in social entrepreneurship with Build a Biz Kids.

    * SHARE Family & Community Services

    * 3030 Gordon Project 

    * Starfish Backpack 

    * PoCo Youth Services

All together, in less than 3 hours of hustle in each camp, about an hour per team, they raised WELL OVER $1000!

Through teamwork, determination, learning and execution, these kids have made a big difference in their communities.

Next up are our After School programs starting in September. Many of our Summer Camp Students have already registered but there is still space left.

Students in our after school programs start their own business, step by step, and   learn what it feels like to create a product that someone else wants, to hear no more than once and still be successful, to earn their own money and understand the value of it, and so much more!

We have 2 locations available in the Tri Cities/Burnaby area and the ages are broken up for 7-9 year olds and 10-12 year olds so we can really dive into the reading, writing and mathematics.

Click here to see our current schedule

Click here to see our program descriptions

Click here to register now

Don't wait long, many parents have already pre-registered their child and each class has limited space.