Fourth Grade Students Create Mini-Societies
On Monday, May 24, the fourth-grade students in Ms. Keenan, Ms. Lynch, and Ms. Robinson’s classes put their “mini-society” into action.
The students spent a great deal of time learning about business models, market research, and supply and demand. They used all of those lessons to plan and execute their own commerce model.
They created currency and were paid ahead of time. Each student had to pay rent for their booth, paying more for a prime location.
Students sold handmade creations at their booths. They each had the opportunity to go shopping and purchase real items with the currency that they created. They also manned their booths and worked on the sales side.
Prior to launching the mini-society, the students decided what to call their society. They had to have their ideas and logo approved by the group.
This particular activity allows students to follow the Design-Thinking Process, which Mrs. Robinson studied at the Nueva Program in California, which was developed at Stanford. A process for creative problem-solving, design thinking is a pillar of Nueva's learning approach. It draws on the humanities for empathy and ethnography; the arts and engineering for idea generation and invention; and the sciences for hypothesis creation, prototyping, testing, and reflection. Students develop the mindset to identify situations where they can better the world, and design thinking gives them the tools and resolve to take action.