Monday, July 26, 2010

Lemonade Stand Economics

Most people think the recipe for lemonade is water, sugar and lemons.

In my house, it's kids, boredom, and 100+ degree summer heat.

This past weekend, with record temperatures outside and rampant boredom inside, my kids decided to test their entrepreneurial muscles with an old fashioned lemonade stand. They didn't know it at the time, but their fun activity was really summer school in disguise, with lessons in marketing, economics, mathematics and social studies.

It also proved to be a good learning laboratory for management. Overheard: "Delaney, enough cookies. You're eating all the profits!"

Much to my surprise, my kids turned a healthy profit, before succumbing to the scorching sun. Of course, it's easier to make money when your venture capital firm (Dad) doesn't require you to pay back the small business loan, instead forgiving it in exchange for a tall glass with extra ice.

Reminded me a little of a Reading Rainbow episode from years ago. Levar Burton connects the lemonade stand to the New York Stock Exchange while teaching kids about math, and also visits with Nantucket Nectors, the "Juice Guys."

Maybe this exercise in small business will mean I've raised a couple Juice Guys of my own. I hope so: I could use some free Half & Half...

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