Business on the move

Quotes from teachers during extensive trials

Business on the Move gives an unprecedented insight into how the world of global business works. How goods are transported and the costs involved. How many decisions need to be made. The environmental impact. How profit is the driving force. The game develops pupils’ listening skills, decision making and a greater understanding of the need to persevere.

Mrs J. Richardson, Head Teacher, Saltburn Primary School

The game engaged and absorbed the children, taught them about the world of business and used and enhanced their Literacy, Numeracy and thinking skills.

Mrs B. Richardson, Head Teacher, St Matthew’s C.E. Primary School, Bolton

During the activity the children stayed engaged and focused on all tasks. Children learnt that decision making was a pivotal factor of the game and that this always results in consequences in the world of work.

The pupils could also see why their ‘pearls curriculum’ was an important part of their education. It gave them a better understanding of why they needed to experience pearls of Risk, Choice, Responsibility and Reality to name but a few.

Mr J. L. Hardy, Head Teacher, St John Vianney Primary School and Children’s Centre, Hartlepool

An excellent way of improving numeracy skills and making decisions on how to expand in business. Good help with geography because you learn about distances and about how to invest in businesses to make them bigger and bigger.

Ms T. Liveras, Young People & Play Coodinator, Oscars Out of School Care, Hartlepool Borough Council

The current syllabus that the students are learning, means that they have to consider key logistical decisions that businesses have to make on a day-to-day basis and also consider the consequences of such decisions that they make. The game gave the students a practical approach to quite demanding theory in a fun and enjoyable way.

Since testing the board game all students that took part have confirmed that it helped them to develop their understanding to a higher level and actually made them think about such key decisions that are required from a logistical point of view. Not only was it a fun way to learn it also stretched and challenged the students.

Mrs M. Bunter, Director of Faculty and Head of Business Studies, Hartlepool 6th Form College, Hartlepool

Initial Pilot With 8 Pupils

The game was accessible for all children regardless of gender or ability. My children played in mixed pairs and this was very successful. It encouraged them to plan, debate, discuss, check and share and all these are important skills they need to develop but also that need to be used in business in order to succeed. The children were able to identify strengths and skills that each other had in order to share out tasks. Clarity of communication was of utmost importance throughout the game and the children enjoyed this.

All children were able to access the game in a way appropriate to them, therefore I strongly believe the literacy and maths skills of every child would be developed. We have a strong focus on speaking and listening to learn in the primary curriculum and the game provided an excellent situation in which to do so. Many of the children commented on how much they had enjoyed the team work and conversation.

At the end of the game, I liked the balance/budgeting sheets that needed to be completed. These were simple but at the same time complicated enough to show the children how businesses have to balance their spending.

Revised with class of 29 – including the 8 from the pilot who acted as bankers.

I am very impressed with the improvements and changes to the game. The board was appealing and the children drawn to it even when they had not seen it before. The children thoroughly enjoyed playing as individuals this time (although I do feel that working in pairs last time was a good start for them) and that they were in control of their own decisions and company state. Many of the children were extremely excited by this and it was positive to see.

I feel the changes were very good and I liked the way that the instruction sheets (rules) and payments (costs) had been simplified. The objective of having these was still relevant but was more manageable for them as the game proceeded. The double sided cards (rules) for air/sea and road/rail travel were far easier to follow and therefore enabled all children to access their turn regardless of their ability. It was an easier format to follow and enabled me, as the teacher, to talk it through with them if they were stuck.

I like the idea of the cards to pick up during each turn as I feel that it keeps the excitement and some suspense running throughout the game with them not knowing what they might get.

With having a very challenging but able class of children, I feel the game was clear and simple, but complex enough at the same time, to enable all children to succeed and just as importantly, learn something new. Every child had to problem solve, plan ahead, succeed, lose, be challenged and most importantly, enjoy themselves! There were many highs and lows but this is what they will experience through their lives – a very good experience in my opinion.

I feel that many children lack knowledge of the world around them, especially how business like that works. Quite often they expect and see but don’t know how so if we are able to show them it must be positive.

Ms K. Parkin, KS2 Coordinator and Year 6 teacher, Jerry Clay Academy, Wakefield

The game certainly introduces pupils to the language of business, with words such as assets, risks, costs and profits all becoming more familiar to the children as the afternoon went on.

The main reason why the children enjoyed the game seemed to be the competitive aspect. They all enjoyed working in pairs and the decision making process created lots of speaking and listening opportunities, which is always something our school is trying to encourage.

From talking to the children after the session, they also commented that:

• They liked the risk-taking aspect of the game deciding whether or not they should spend the money on another train, or whether to ‘play it safe’ and wait until later on
• They thought that the cards created tension and excitement not knowing whether the card would help or hinder them
• They also liked the CO2 dice (we are an Eco School) and therefore this is something that is important to them – they also liked the idea of getting back £5000 that their opponents had paid!

Mrs L. Sennett, Deputy Headteacher Sandal Magna Community Primary School, Wakefield

Year 9 and 11 students played the game and found it a very exciting opportunity. The groups felt it was a fantastic way to learn about business. They used communication skills as they talked to each other about choices made. They understand logistics and the costs involved in the process. They found the cards were unexpected and they had to overcome new challenges.

The groups were very engaged with the game and felt that it developed team work and they loved the competitive nature of ‘Business on the Move’.

I have never seen such challenging students work together, all were able to justify their choices to buy new transport methods.

Ms R. Fox, Head of Business Studies, Belle Vue Boys School, Bradford

I have spoken to the students and they all said that they enjoyed playing the the game and in particular spending money on goods (assets) and planning/plotting their journey to try to outwit the other players. As the game developed, they were in control of their decisions and were reaping their rewards! They enjoyed the taking risks as they made their way around the board.

The game was a huge success with the students and they would like to see it introduced into the curriculum. All of the students said that it was a good educational resource.

Mrs Z. Murray, Year 8 Leader High Tunstall College of Science, Hartlepool

The game had many commendable features:
• The game modelled a real-life situation
• Students applied their maths skills in a real-life situation
• It provided an opportunity to see the importance and relevance of Functional Skills in maths. an area of key importance in today’s maths curriculum
• It provided an opportunity for students to interact, discuss ideas and learn from one another in an unpressurised situation
• It had applications for use in PSHCE, Geography and Business Studies
• It could be adapted for all ages and abilities but provided a challenge for our most able students
• It was a suitable activity to be used on a Curriculum Day (where students are off timetable and are given extra-curricular activities)

Mrs C. Johnson, Mathematics teacher (Yr 7 & 9) Huntcliff School, Saltburn by the Sea

Our journey around this innovative and exciting board game was completely engaging and enlightening into many aspects of the business world. All pupils were instantly drawn in to finding out more about business strategies and applying them to their ‘own’ business.

The game allowed many aspects of the business environment to come to life. Especially the decision-making processes necessary when involved in international trade and the supporting tertiary services – this gave many opportunities for a realistic challenge. Pupils had a clear image of the importance of trade on our local, national and global community. Much enjoyment was derived from communicating and negotiating the purchase of assets and other necessary purchases.
In addition, pupils were using a wide range of business terminology with confidence and accuracy throughout the game. The increasing familiarity using business terms gave rise to enhanced understanding; driven by numerous examples presented by the activity. Business on the Move has enriched our Business Studies and extended curriculum giving pupils a true insight into business and commercial activity.
Numeracy skills were particularly given a massive boost during the game when every throw of the dice had financial implications.

The true picture of the financial record was presented, by pupils, in a balance sheet format, again giving pupils the chance to use recognised business techniques to demonstrate profit and loss.
Our pupils have been fortunate to have chance to explore and experience the development of their enterprise skills in a competitive and stimulating manner.

Mrs J. Sharkey, Head of Business Studies, Kettlethorpe High School, Maths & Computing College, Wakefield

Strengths:
• The slides worked as a clear visual aid to support all explanations throughout the session
• New terminology, e.g. ‘assets’, ‘logistics’, ‘containers’ etc were linked to the children’s common experiences
• Lots of cross curricular links: mathematics, science, environmental responsibility, communication, teamwork
• Activities instilled the idea that money sometimes needs to be borrowed initially but needs to be paid back at some stage – this idea of returning money surprised a few of the children
• Staggering the introduction of new rules avoided pupils feeling overloaded – the rules introduced later wouldn’t have made much sense out of context if they had been if they had been given at the start of the game
• There were opportunities to extend learning beyond the session, e.g. the children will find out more about carbon footprints for their homework this week.
• Ample opportunities for pupils to be challenged. The game required higher order thinking, logic and problem solving. Good provision for all, particularly for gifted and talented, who took a lead when ‘problems’ arose.
• From a teacher’s perspective this lesson was well organised, resourced and the delivery was excellent. It ensured challenge, cross curricular learning and pace. It is rare to find an activity that would hold the attention of such a varied group for so long!

Ms C. Conboy Year 5 teacher Crigglestone St. James’ CE (VC) J & I School, Wakefield

The main strengths I felt were the opportunities for problem solving and planning strategies which required higher order thinking skills. Then afterwards discussing what they do differently should they play it again. It was also a chance to assess speaking and listening skills as an observer and also as a teacher to see how they arrived at their decisions, it really made them think.

It involved mathematical skills dealing with larger numbers and the final calculations could be done on a spreadsheet using formulae, which would involve ICT. Environmental responsibility was also included making it altogether a valuable cross curricular game.

Mrs E. Moss, Assistant Headteacher, Mackie Hill Primary School, Wakefield

A fantastic game which developed a range of thinking skills, mathematical concepts and geographical knowledge. Its cross curricular links were particularly relevant to our creative curriculum. Being an Eco school, the reference to carbon footprints, CO2 emissions, as well as the need to reduce pollution made the game more relevant to our forward thinking children.

Ms D. Feltham & Ms J. Cox, Class teachers, Sankey Valley St James’ CE VA Primary School, Warrington

The game gave an excellent insight into logistics and as business terminology was used throughout, also helped the students gain a better understanding of the world of work within a business environment.

Enhanced and used throughout the game were communication and negotiation skills. Being able to record and actively use profit and loss records, together with the financial implications dictated by throwing the dice, was an excellent way to utilise numeracy skills.

Mrs. S. Stewart, Business & Partnership Manager, Buttershaw Business & Enterprise College, Bradford

The game introduced the business concepts of finance, distribution, logistics and economies of scale and engaged the students throughout. Linked with cross curricular areas such as maths.

Mr A. Zia, Business and ICT Faculty, The South Leeds Academy, Leeds

It is vital, especially in the current economic climate, we provide our young people with enterprise opportunities as well as business awareness. Business on the Move provides both. It was a great way to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week. Business on the Move also works well across age and upper ability levels and engages students with an understanding of business.

Ms L. Merriman, Enterprise Coordinator, Brigshaw High School and Language College, Castleford

Business on the Move is a very powerful tool and would be a real asset to have in the classroom. The game brings real life business scenarios and decision making into the classroom and engages pupils on a different level.
Business on the Move covers a plethora of business topics and enables learners to use a different angle to apply skills and knowledge.
The game enables teaching to reinforce critical skills and SEAL, which is crucial to pupils’ progression and achievement.

Mr R. Buckley, Course Leader for Business, The Co-operative Academy of Leeds, Leeds

All pupils were instantly drawn in to finding out more about business strategies and applying them to their ‘own’ ideas. They were motivated by the thought processes related to the game and felt that it tested their intelligence and was really related to maths, literacy, science, technology and geography as well as business.

Lorne McNeill Senior Strategic Leader – Vocational, Enterprise & Business related aspects, Challenge College

The students enjoyed the decision making aspect of the game, this really taxed their higher order analytical and evaluative skills. It helped them with the understanding of business.

D. Proudfoot, Head of BEICT faculty, Great Sankey High School, Warrington

The students thoroughly enjoyed playing the game and by the end of the session were familiar with lots of new terms and ideas related to enterprise.

Ms L. Morris, Head of House, whole school responsibility for Enterprise, Dixons Allerton Academy, Bradford

All students were able to access the game irrespective of ability and all were clearly learning. A good way to get across a key concept and get it embedded within a lesson.

Ms H. Innes, Assistant Head of Vocational, Ralph Thoresby School, Leeds

The game is appropriate to this age group with specific learning needs Basing the game on the idea of owning their own business opens up a whole new world in a board game and takes learning beyond the classroom to a new level. Ownership drives each child, allowing them choice and thus consequence over their own ‘destiny’. The game empowers children to believe they can achieve whatever they wish, a powerful and effective tool as witnessed today. Brilliant!

Miss A. Hunter, St Wilfred’s, Catholic High School & Sixth Form College, Featherstone, West Yorkshire (10 Foundation Learning Tier students, 5 are autistic or have Aspergers, all have moderate learning difficulties, one student is an elective mute. Aged 11 or 12 years, all reading ages are below 7 chronological years).