An Entrepreneurial Journey: Corky Kidz The students and I began our entrepreneurial journey by brainstorming and discussing possible ideas for our business. We researched our ideas to decide on what we wanted to make and sell in our business. We were off on a new adventure together. Once we chose our business, we thought about what materials we were going to need. We quickly realized we needed lots of wine corks…LOTS of wine corks! We created a letter asking local businesses, family members, and members of our community for donations. Corks started rolling in! The students experimented and shared their ideas with the class. The first things students wanted to create were cork coasters made out of cut-up corks, although cutting corks was not easy. Students investigated different ways to cut corks, and we tried them all, but found out that a band saw was the best way. While researching how to cut them, students came across many different things they could create with corks. They shifted their focus then decided to start creating items for the holidays using the corks. Students started showing off their ideas by creating prototypes and working together to make their items appealing. In November they focused on creating pumpkins. In December they created snowmen, trees, reindeer, and more holiday items. Every student played a different role in the design process. Some students gathered corks, some painted, some glued, some researched. Together, we became the business known as the Corky Kidz. The amount of learning that occurred in the classroom was more than I ever imagined would happen by starting a business. When students asked if they could work on Corky Kidz, or even stayed after school to help, I knew that I instilled within them the love of learning. And, I’ve learned through the process, too. This group of students brought me more smiles, laughs, tears, and grey hairs then I could have asked for this year. Seeing them working as a team to fulfill orders, and then crossing an order off the board was pure happiness. The students run our Corky Kidz business, and I can’t wait to see what else they accomplish!