Archives For homeschool

Photo by Hannah Stelzl

I am focused on entrepreneurship!  When my wife and I first started homeschooling our children we caught the vision for a different kind of education.  One that would build the not-so-academic side of those we are raising, but still equip them with the essential reading, writing, and arithmetic skills needed to succeed.

My schooling history has made me more risk adverse than I’d like.  It’s taken me twenty-five years to unlearn the principles of:

– Mastering the No. 2 Pencil

– Only submitting what was asked for

– Never thinking outside the box – putting away all creativity

– Thinking that wisdom is somehow related to memorizing a certain number of biology terms

(and the list goes on)…

Photo by Hannah Stelzl

With this in mind, my kids are working on businesses – all the time, thinking about how to create new opportunities, serving the basic needs of those around us, establishing value, setting fees, and selling.   This year marks another year of Sarah’s annual Valentine’s Day Cookie bake.  This year she sold over 200 cookies by cold calling with a compelling message.  Some even gave additional money or donated without accepting cookies!  Of course she had help from Tiny-Tim who enjoys cooking (and perhaps even more, eating the left overs.)

Through this project we’ve studied how to discover a new opportunity, how to avoid working at McDonalds for mininum wage, how to sell to strangers (cold calling), how to develop a message that sells,…but also, how to count the cost of goods sold (COGS), the difference between sales, gross profit, net profit, and losses due to wrong or canceled orders.  Fortunately we have not had to deal with customer service issues on this particular project, but we’ve covered that in other projects, and hope to minimize this in the future.

Photo by Hannah Stelzl

What are you doing today to extend beyond what you learned in school – to think creatively, and to find business opportunities where there don’t seem to be any?


© 2011, David Stelzl

Singapore – Day 6

September 10, 2010 — Leave a comment

It’s a 7 1/2 hour flight on the Airbus 380-800 pictured in yesterday’s post – traveling at 80% of the speed of sound (which is just shy of 800 mph).  As expected, the service was excellent, great food, but not a lot of rest.  Given it’s the weekend I have some downtime to look around and am looking forward to adding photos to my growing Picassa album tomorrow.

The Lo family, a connection my daughter made last year through a home school retreat in the states, hosted me for dinner, treating me to local favorites at a nearby church fellowship in the evening.  It’s not often that I have opportunity to interact with families abroad, so I made the most of it, trying different cuisines from areas surrounding Singapore.  Laksa is a favorite local dish here (pictured to the left).  It’s made with chicken, thick noodles, coconut milk, an egg, local vegetables, and a bunch of seasonings. The small lime on the side of the dish then is squeezed over the noodles just before eating.  I was expecting to be served with chop sticks, but they graciously handed me a fork.  Meeting various families and touring the grounds made this evening exceptional.  I was surprised to learn that their 82 year old pastor and his wife are from the Savannah Georgia area, not far from my home town.  Tomorrow the Lo’s have planned a sight-seeing trip where I hope to capture numerous photos and sample mooncakes (an important part of the Mid-Autumn Festival here in Singapore)!