The Biz – Week Two and Young Entrepreneur Interview Requests

We are in our second full week of the BizMovie Project. Today the students learned about the “Profit Equation:”

Revenue – Expenses = Profit(Loss)

We reviewed this week’s vocabulary using Quia and also viewed our vocabulary as a Wordle.

Wordle of BizMovie Vocabulary Week Two

The Online Job Board was introduced today and students filled out job applications for roles on their team.
Online Job Board

This week we’ve also extended invitations for video chat interviews with young entrepreneurs around the globe. These connections were made possible by my Twitter PLN (Professional Learning Network) H/T to @RaisingCEOKids and @JuniorBiz. They have both created young entrepreneur twitter lists of remarkable business savy kids, teens, and young adults!

We have made similar connections in the past using Skype. Video chats allow my students to learn from a real, authentic audience. We were featured in Wes Fryer’s Moving At The Speed of Creativity Blog in February 2009 titled “Students Interviewing Students Over Skype During School.”

This video is an example of how we’ve used Skype in my classroom.
Find more videos like this on Celebrate Oklahoma Voices!

I am responding to the interested young people with an invitation to complete a Google Form I created to request additional information and provide additional information as needed.

I know my students will enjoy speaking in-person to young entrepreneurs who can really provide the “voice” and inspiration for creativity and innovation. The interviews will be documented as podcasts and posted on our blog.

We Want To Hear From You!

    What question would you ask a young entrepreneur? Give my 7th graders suggestions for their interviews by responding to our Wifitti Screen. Text @wif50160 + your question to 87884

Product Innovation Game – You Be The Judge!

Seven student teams in the BizMovie project are competing in the NFTE’s “Product Innovation Game” this week. Vote for your favorite innovation at the poll below. Voting closes on Friday, January 28, 2011. All seven videos are posted below.

Voting instructions: The teams each had 30 minutes to create a new product (real or fantasy) with simple household materials (i.e., paper plates, cups, pipe cleaners, cotton balls, swabs, yarn, paper clips, etc.). Each team was provided the exact number of materials. Please vote for the product you feel is the most creative and innovative.

Team #1 (Jentry, Amy, David)

Team #2 (Garrett & Dalton)

Team #3 (Julio & Allison)

Team #4 (Keagan, Joseph, & Hunter)

Team #5 (Lexi & Miriam)

Team #6 (Jared & Colten)

Team #7 (Kerstein, Haley, & Brianna)

You Be The Judge Product Innovation Vote
Text Your Vote or Submit A Code To:

Imagine, Create, Innovate!

Today the students participated in a hands-on product innovation game from the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE).  Here’s the assignment as posted on our Edmodo site.

  • Challenge: Split your BizMovie team into two teams.  Each small group (of 2-3) has 30 minutes to come up with a totally new creative product from the materials given. The product can be real or fantasy, but it is important that each team demonstrate creativity.
  • Each team will have 1 minute to present their creation. The presentation will be recorded and posted on our blog for international judging. The presentation MUST include:
    • 1) The name of the product
    • 2) The features and benefits of the product
    • 3) A profile of its customers (age, gender, needs, interests, etc. . . .)
  • The winning team voted on by the blogosphere, will be awarded $5 BizBucks for their team.
  • The purpose of this activity is to stimulate creativity and critical thinking.

Stay tuned readers, the product judging process will be announced soon!  Here is an Animoto slideshow from the project.

And a FlickR Slideshow:

The Biz For January 17-21

Hello everyone!

This is our first full week of the BizMovie project and we’re off to an exciting start.  Last Thursday, my students signed up for an Edmodo account.  Edmodo is a free private Microblogging platform for the classroom.  All the project assignments will be posted in our Edmodo group.  We also invited parents to join the group.  The students were very excited to have access to a classroom social networking site.

On the first day of class Miriam says, “Well, about to have to leave Mrs. Parks class 🙁 a little bummed. I love this class already!”

Jentry says, “Okay, first time on edmodo…. I think I am figuring it out… :)”

Allison posted, “Getting to know edmodo!!!!!!”

Last week the class also completed a Zommerang survey about how they feel about collaborative work.  You can see the results in the widget on the right-hand sidebar of this blog.  It was great to see a wide variety of results.  This will allow for great team interaction.  Teams were also announced today!  Meet the BizMovie groups (drum-roll-please):

  • Team A: Allison, Garrett, Julio, Dalton
  • Team B: Brianna, Jentry, David, Amy
  • Team C: Lexi, Kerstein, Jared, Miriam, Colton
  • Team D: Haley, Keagan, Hunter, Joseph

Today we also completed our pre-assessment quiz via Quia.  I really didn’t know what to expect on results, but overall I was pleased.  I know the students will learn so much about business and technology during these 9 weeks of the BizMovie project.  The BizMovie project also focuses on the 21st Century Skills listed here:

  • critical thinking and problem solving
  • oral/written communication
  • teamwork/collaboration
  • leadership
  • creativity/innovation
  • professionalism/work ethic
  • ethics/social responsibility

This week the students will participate in a product innovation hands-on game (from the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship) with the following learning objectives:

  • Students will learn the difference between personal characteristics and learned skills.
  • Students will use entrepreneurial skills to create a new innovative product.
  • Students will learn to create business ideas with limited resources.
  • Students will receive practice in delivering “30-Second Pitches/Hooks”

Products will be posted later this week!  Stay tuned!  In addition, the students will also post their first blog, and discuss the function of a business, identify the profit equation and the entrepreneurial cycle, and identify the characteristics of a successful company!  Students should review the vocabulary on quia.

This week we will also be discussing the entrepreneurial cycle displayed on the poster below.  We would love to hear your comments about our project!  Perhaps you could share your own business experience with us!  We’d love to hear your story!  (And we also hope to add a few more international visitors!)

Entrepreneurial Cycle

Entrepreneurial Cycle

BizMovie Project Parent Letter


Dear Parent,

I am writing to tell you about an innovative learning experience we are about to undertake in my Media 3rd Hour Class.  Your son or daughter will be participating in a project entitled BizMovie.  We will be working on this project for approximately nine weeks.

In this real-world simulation, students work together to design, produce, market, and sell tickets to their movie as they learn what it takes to start and run a movie production business. Students participate in all aspects of the business process as they incorporate their companies with the state, sell shares of their company (stock) to raise BizBucks (the BizMovie currency), and track all corporate finances.

If you are interested in volunteering in the classroom during BizMovie, opportunities may be available. Additional information will be shared via our Edublog site, email and edmodo

You can follow our classroom project blog at this address:

Be sure to subscribe by email so you won’t miss a post.  You can subscribe in the upper left hand column of the home page.

Safety: Keeping our students personal details private is of utmost importance to me.  The following guidelines have been established to ensure our blog is kept secure.

  • Students will only be identified by their first name and last initial.  Students will not publish personal details about themselves.
  • Student posts are checked by Mrs. Parks before they are saved onto the blog.
  • The class will discuss the blog rules for posting.
  • The class will thoroughly discuss the BizMovie blogging rules.
  • We would love you to comment on our blog once we get it up and running. Please only use your first name or first name of student + mom or dad (i.e. Samantha’s Mom) to protect our students’ privacy.

Why blog?

Blogs are great because you can share things with a wide audience. Instead of me just seeing the students’ work, all of the parents can view the work and leave comments. Using blogs is also a great way for students to improve their ICT skills and get experience using an emerging technology. Students improve their literacy skills while blogging and it a fantastic opportunity for students to learn about appropriate online behaviors.  One of the most rewarding experiences from blogging is making global connections. We can communicate and even Skype with classes from all over the world!

At the conclusion of the BizMovie project, student teams will present their animation movies to students/parents and others from all over the world.  These presentations will take place at the Howe Public Schools’ Technology Building sometime in early March.  The exact date will be announced soon.  We hope you will be able to attend.  Please contact me if you have any questions about the 7th Grade BizMovie Project.

My email is
Tammy G. Parks, Teacher
Howe Public Schools

Parents: Follow our BizMovie Project on Edmodo!


Dear Parent:

This 9 weeks, your son/daughter is in my media class 3rd period.  We are working on a special project based learning (PBL) unit called BizMovie.  This project is explained more in the attached letter.  As part of this project, we are using Edmodo in our classroom.   Edmodo is a safe social learning platform that lets our class connect both at school and from home.

Edmodo Parent Accounts are now available and I’d like to invite you to join our classroom online.

With Parent Accounts, you can now:

  • Send messages to your child and me, either together or individually
  • View homework assignments, due dates
  • Stay up to date on your child’s grades
  • Receive updates on class and school events

Edmodo is accessible not just online but on any mobile device, so remember to set up your notifications to receive alerts and check edmodo on your phone.  In addition, you can download free Edmodo Apps for both iPhone and Android.

Join our classroom on Edmodo in a few simple steps:

Go to
Select “Parent Signup”
Type your unique code:  [XXXX] in the Parent Code field, then create your unique username and password.
Parent code provided by me
After you sign up for the first time, you will no longer need the parent code – you’ll login using your unique username and password.
Select Sign Up.   

That’s all there is to it! Let me know if you have any questions.  My email address is   I look forward to connecting with you on Edmodo!




7th Graders Learn about Movie Production

Students in Mrs. Tammy Parks’ media class are learning the basics of business, entrepreneurship, and computer programming by running their own movie production companies. On March 3, 2011, these young executives will showcase their animated films at Howe Public Schools in hopes of selling enough tickets to repay their investors and turn a profit.

Mrs. Parks is teaching BizMovie, a program created by The BizWorld Foundation, a national non-profit dedicated to teaching entrepreneurial, financial and business skills to kids. In BizMovie, students work in teams to start and run their own businesses in a simulated movie production industry.   This real-world curriculum reinforces academic content and standards while infusing core 21st Century skills through the discovery of business basics, finance, money management and computer programming. Taking on different leadership roles, students learn the basics of entrepreneurship and animated film production as they apply for jobs, design, produce, market and sell tickets to their animated films.

These student-led production teams will receive help from outside “consultants.” Teachers, parents and business leaders will serve as mentors to these students by playing different roles such as Investment Bankers and Company Advisors.

“Technology and business basics are essential tools for students in the 21st Century,” said Catherine Hutton Markwell, CEO of The BizWorld Foundation. “Teachers who have embraced BizMovie are truly the champions of educational innovation.”

# # #

About The BizWorld Foundation

The BizWorld Foundation’s mission is to challenge and engage children across the cultural and economic spectrum through experiential learning programs that teach the basics of business, entrepreneurship, and money management and promote teamwork and leadership in the classroom.  For more information, please contact us at T: 1(888) 4-BIZKIDS

E: or visit