The entrepreneurial kids we could all learn a lesson from

20 Sep 2022

By Georgina Hannekum 4 min read

Imagine what would happen if we spent as much time trying to teach clever kids to become entrepreneurs as we did trying to get them to prepare for the HSC?

Consider the trampoline. In essence, a simple thing: a metal frame with a skin of tautly stretched material that somehow managed to become one of the most popular and widespread toys in the world. You might think that the person who invented it would be an established name in manufacturing or invention – but you’d be wrong.

George Nissen, inventor of the trampoline, was only 16 years old when he created his first prototype, building it with nothing but spare time, some simple materials, and a love for acrobatics.

This natural creativity, curiosity and can-do attitude is core to entrepreneurship, making kids some of the most powerful inventors and change-makers in the world. It’s precisely what we, as tutors, love to inspire and cultivate in our students!

Here are just a few modern youthful movers and shakers that prove the power of child-driven entrepreneurship.

George Nissen, inventor of the trampoline, was only 16 years old when he created his first prototype, building it with nothing but spare time, some simple materials, and a love for acrobatics.

Jack Bloomfield

Jack Bloomfield is an Australian teenage entrepreneur who earned more than $1 million after establishing a venture in high school. According to Jack, it was the “best decision” he ever made educationally.

His first business, created when he was only 12 years old, was a company called ‘Next Gifts’, which sold pre-made and custom greeting cards with a one-day turnaround.

Jack Bloomfield

He then moved into e-commerce at 15, buying and selling almost anything that would make a profit, from bowties made in China to iPhone cases from South Korea.

Jack then founded Disputify, a disruptive eCommerce fraud detection tool, and he doesn’t seem to have any desire to slow down!

Hannah Herbst

While attending an engineering and technology summer camp at age 13, Hannah Herbst envisioned a device that could capture the ocean waves and convert them into electricity.

Inspired by her penpal from Sub-Saharan Africa, an area of the world where many people have little access to reliable electricity, the probe works by harnessing energy from ocean waves and converting it to usable electricity. This low-cost energy is also used to purify water using two-phase microfiltration.

A perfect example of kid entrepreneurship: using an existing resource in a new, creative and intelligent way to solve a major problem and invoke real, tangible social change.

Ayden Bottos

Ayden Bottos may be only 12 years old but he already has the ambition to be the CEO of his own tech company.

Ayden has an impressive set of qualifications already. Alumni of the Child Genius programme and a trainee in the cyber defence competition CyberTaipan just to name a couple, Ayden has also already built his own operating system, which he plans to take to market.

With a predicted shortfall of cyber workers in Australia by 2026, Ayden is sure to continue to be on the cutting edge of the next wave of digitally-focused entrepreneurs.

Supporting clever kids of the future

Parents play a big role in their kids’ entrepreneurial endeavours. While it can be tempting to step in and take over, it’s better to give them the support and encouragement to develop their idea even if (especially if) they fail fast and often.

Support them with special holiday courses in STEM and engineering-based subjects which will get them in good stead for the future:

Start a business as a young person

A handy resource from the Australian Government on how to set-up a start-up, including legal and tax obligations, as well as where you can go to get help.

AgriFutures Australia & Startup Business

An education programme that teaches high school students in rural and regional Australia how to solve problems facing agriculture, using innovation and an entrepreneurial mindset. The programmes provide for mentoring, workplace visits and industry and school collaboration to provide a clear vision of the opportunities available for life after school.

Australian School of Entrepreneurship (ASE)

A community-led and purpose-driven education social enterprise that helps develop the entrepreneurial skills of school students, young entrepreneurs and anyone aged 5 to 24 years with a passion for innovation.

We run special holiday programmes in STEM and engineering-based subjects. Speak to one of our learning specialists to find out more.

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