Learning Life Skills from Children

The last two weeks have been pretty eventful here at Sirdab Lab, with the Kidpreneurs Summer Camp running in full swing. If you popped by Sirdab you’d have noticed an entire section of the space turned into an art studio worthy of an amateur artist, fully equipped with paints, brushes, about six different kinds of glue (who knew there were that many?) and tons of other art supplies.

The six-year olds had a blast exhibiting their creativity decorating masks and flowerpots, designing t-shirts, making photo frames and show pieces from recyclable materials and more in the first week. They even had a 3D printing session with Abdullah in which they had a first-hand experience of printing their own designs.

In the second week, they had to choose an item they’d created the previous week to mass-produce and sell. We gave each of them a startup capital to purchase raw material (art supplies) and escorted them to one of the many stationery stores upstairs in Dasman Complex (convenient much?), helping them select and purchase everything they needed. It was heartening to see how excited they were with having to manage their own cash. After learning about basic accounting concepts (cost, sales, profit) and creating their own product lines, they were taught how to make a pitch. The pitches worked well; they sold everything they’d created on the open day last Thursday and made a tidy profit, while donating a third of their income to charity. Overall, it was a great learning experience for them.

But it wasn’t just the kids that were inspired from this experience; as their supervisors, a few skills that can be incorporated to life and business were reinforced in us too.

Be resourceful: When working with children, it’s important to think on your feet and to be resourceful. Children get enthusiastic fast, and get bored faster and it’s always sensible to have a backup plan in case you need it to keep them interested.
Be solutions-oriented: Children don’t allow something as insignificant as a problem to hold them back. They work together to come up with practical solutions to overcome any difficulties they’d encounter.
Be curious: Children find the wonder in the simplest things that we often take for granted. They harbor an insatiable curiosity about the world around them, an attitude more adults would do well to adopt.

What about you? What do you think adults can learn from children to be better at life and business?
In other news, Sirdab Lab members will now receive a 10% discount from Coded, a coding school offering courses that will cover all the technologies you need to build fully functioning web apps. To learn more about Coded, visit their website: http://www.joincoded.com