Being entrereneur from the very beginning

Some people have already heard me say that during the past year (2019-2020), yes, the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, life gave me a couple of gifts that I won’t easily forget. One of them was not only meeting but also having fun with the Princess of Girona Foundation (FPdGi) and its great professionals from one of their pedagogical expeditions together with a group of Spanish professors whom today, without a doubt, I consider friends and colleagues for life.

Today’s post has its origin in Valencia, when I met Rafa Flores, then director of the SAFA Professional Schools center in Écija – Peñaflor Foundation (Seville), recognized in 2019 with the School of the Year Award organized by the FPdGi. Do you want to know more? I invite you to continue reading.

Today I’m not going to talk about the expedition, mainly because I already did it in a previous post, but about ONE of its beautiful consequences, because I have a few to tell. The point is that a few months ago I received a call from Rafa in which he invited me to participate as a jury in the entrepreneurship contest of his educational center, about which he already told us something during our expedition. You can imagine that I couldn’t and I didn’t want to say no, obviously, right? The contest was about entrepreneurship, education, schools and infant, primary and secondary students. What more could I ask for? So yes, indeed, my answer was quick and sure: yes, Rafa, count on me, I will be delighted to participate.

This contest, which is not the first year that has been held, is divided into three categories:

  • TELL ME AN ENTREPRENEURSTORY for Early Childhood Education students (NEW).
  • INVENT and START IT for Primary Education students.
  • COMIC CANVAS for Secondary Education students.

TELL ME AN ENTREPRENEURSTORY. Children, with the help of their family, narrate a story (recorded in audio format) where they must capture some of the abilities or skills that characterize the E.P. Besides, later, the educational center will broadcast those stories on its radio, because the SAFA-Ecija center is also an entrepreneur in this matter. Can you imagine children between 3 and 5 years old telling stories?

In INVENT and START IT, primary school students must design or draw the prototype of an invention that responds to a problem or need perceived in a sector of the population and describe some of its functions, characteristics, and benefits.

Some examples of this category are a pill that disintegrates dog feces, a pendant that takes the temperature, a wardrobe that helps you choose the daily outfit, shoes that self-dry, clothes stalls that close in contact with the rain or a goal that measures power.

In the COMIC CANVAS (STORY BOARD), category, the Secondary Education students have to capture in several comic strips the problem or need they perceive from a sector of the population, the invention with which they provide a response and solution to said problem or need, and the satisfaction that consumers feel in the case of acquiring said product or service to improve their quality of life.

In this case, some examples to highlight are masks with special adhesive, codes to protect your home, a full trash can detector, copy machine that transforms used papers into blank sheets of paper or float swimsuits.

More than a month ago we received the proposals made by the students of the center:

  • 10 entrepreneurstories
  • 56 inventions.
  • 45 comic canvas.

In this edition, I had the honor of having three other members of the jury as traveling companions:

  • Carmen Benítez Lomas. Technician from CADE – ÉCIJA (Andalucía Emprende Foundation).
  • Verónica Alhama Rodríguez. Delegate of the Economic Development and Education Area of the Écija City Council.
  • José Castro Mora. Manager of the Persán Foundation.

I think I speak for the 5 of us (because I include Rafa, of course), when I say that we have enjoyed the ideas, many of them very ingenious, as well as fun and well thought out, that would leave more than one person open-mouthed. I won’t stop saying that the naturalness of children, their way of seeing entrepreneurs and understanding entrepreneurship, their way of solving everyday problems, the problems they see and the way they translate them into drawings and tell them are all winners.

I just need to thank Rafa especially for his trust in me (you know, from Valencia to heaven), my fellow jurors and each one of the great little participants. Continue on that path and giving shape to the dreams that make our lives easier. I hope to see you next year when the pandemic lets us.

By the way, for the most curious, the list of the winners and the photos of the Conference held on March 12, 2021 is in this link.

Enjoy these last days of March and the Easter.

Translated by María Ubierna Quintanilla and supervised by Arantza Arruti.

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