Students at The Learning Center Charter School held their annual Mini Mall on January 31st. This popular event is made possible through a program called Middle REAL.
Offered to 6th through 8th graders, Middle REAL (Rural Entrepreneurship through Action Learning) provides curricula, training and resources to help rural students grow through hands-on entrepreneurship education and small business creation. The school also has a Mini REAL program that serves kindergarten through 5th graders. Both programs are a part of the North Carolina REAL program which is dedicated to helping bring entrepreneurship and small business creation to our state.
The Mini and Middle REAL programs work together to hold the annual Mini Mall, an event that has students in kindergarten through fifth grades “shopping” at the Mini Mall with “bucks” they’ve earned in their classroom throughout the school year. Middle school students are responsible for creating all the goods and services available at the Mini Mall. These students create their business from the ground up doing everything from business plans, market surveys, and product design.
“This Mini Mall saw everything from a photo booth to a variety of carnival type games,” said school Director, Mary Jo Dyre. “Although the day of the event was very much fun and games, the skills these students learned creating their businesses are valuable and will serve them for years to come.”