The title quote from Robots’, the “…2005 American computer-animated science fiction dystopian comedy film,” chief inventor named Bigweld, anchored in my heart. (Wikipedia) Not just because my daughter had me watch it with her for what seems like once a month for the past 4 years, but it spoke to the incubating entrepreneur inside of me. I believe we all were created with purpose and to solve problems. Each of us in our own unique way has the abilities which contribute to functioning and flow of our space (community, state, or country). It lies dormant until stimulated by desire or need. Steven Schussler calls it “enhancement gaps-the difference between what you are seeing and what you could create to make what you are seeing better by providing some product or service.” (2010, pg. 65) These enhancement gaps are fuel to an entrepreneur’s soul. I see it as a catalyst for change and the awakening of a new venture. In other words, “…observing your surroundings to see what you can do to make things better is a surefire formula for turning a profit.” (Schussler, 2010, pg. 69)
This fuel feeds my desire to start an afterschool and summer program for kids in grades 3-5. I am not satisfied with the service I pay for each year. I have also found that at each grade level my daughter needs something different. But what will make the program I start different? I needed to discover a difference that will compel parents to invest in their children with my program call KIDZ KINGDOM. Discovery comes in the form of Research and Development. Schussler believes, “Research and development is the most direct route to that destination called excellence, the place every entrepreneur should want to call home.” (2010, p. 76) Each year I try different programs or I hope that last year’s program has improved, but I have found the results to be basically the same. I fill out surveys, but without tangible results. I know what I want as a parent, so I sought to find what other parents want besides a safe environment to play and learn; mostly play of course. They want something difference that has a foundation in learning, scholastically and with personal growth.
I am grateful for the journey into entrepreneurship with this degree. It is allowing me the opportunity to “incubate creative concepts before implementing them…” (2010, pg.81) I will be able to put all my ducks in a row and allow for new streams of interest to flow into this new venture. My need offering will be the summer school portion of the program. In my county, kids only attend summer school if they fail a subject. KIDZ KINGDOM summer school program will be for those who were promoted to the next grade. It will give them an opportunity to continue to learn during the summer with an added bonus of specialized play. It will offer science, math, arts, reading, technology, and sports and recreation. My daughter is in musical theater during the school year and she wants to be a fashion designer. So her summer bonus tracks will consist of design, dance, voice, and acting plus swimming. The need I desire to fill will provide for an awesome summer!
Schussler suggests that we, “…find new and impactful ways to attract attention to [the] product, and make it fun.” (2010, pg. 90) I believe this a la carte summer program will not only impact their beginning and end of grade test scores, but it will substantively impact the development of their dreams, gifting and heart desires. I truly believe that research and development, focused marketing and feedback will support annual robust cohorts to the program. Evaluation and assessment in conjunction with progressive improvement will bring incremental added value for the program, the kids and the community.
Robots (2005 film). (n.d.). Retrieved November 20, 2016, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robots_(2005_film)
Schussler, Steven. (2010) It’s A Jungle In There. New York: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.