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article imageOp-Ed: An informal education — The good old lemonade stand Special

By W. Mark Dendy     Aug 10, 2013 in Business
Elk Grove - Forget about formal education for a minute – standardized testing, homework, rigorous class schedules, textbooks and the like.
There is a tried and true method to teach children math, English, public speaking, customer service, marketing, economics, supply and demand, science, health and myriad life lessons.
Yep, a great way to involve kids in learning and help them earn a little money on a hot summer day is to support the idea of the classic lemonade stand. Best of all, kids love it.
And there is just something about a lemonade stand that brings out the best in people.
You know that old saying “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade?” It’s true! Have you ever seen a lemonade stand surrounded by sad people?
You can still find lemonade stands sprinkled about suburban neighborhoods and you will see the occasional one in urban areas. On Saturday morning, Aug, 10th, there was a bustling stand on an otherwise quiet street corner in Elk Grove, CA.
Three moms, Michelle Ravencroft, Sharlene Garcia, and Robin Rhodes had helped their six children set up shop. Eva, the nine-year-old, was supervising the other children – six-year-olds Landon, Makenna, and Olivia, and four year-olds Weston and Luke.
Mrs. Ravencroft, a family photographer, said that her husband had built the lemonade stand as a prop for a photo shoot. “My kids kept asking me all summer, ‘Can we sell lemonade? Can we sell lemonade?’ and so we got out the calendar and picked a Saturday in August,” she said.
The stand was busy for a while and then all the customers were gone; then more customers came and the stand was busy again. During the slow times the stand operators sampled the lemonade, giggled, and eyed the jar full of money.
Mrs. Rhodes hopped on her bicycle and rushed home to grab more cupcakes after Luke sold the last of two dozen and spouted, “No more cupcakes!” Cupcakes were selling for fifty cents apiece; a cup of lemonade was a quarter.
When the general question came up of how many cups of lemonade had been sold, Luke quickly shouted “One hundred!” Everyone around the booth laughed. Then someone asked, “How much is a cup of lemonade?’ Again Luke shouted “One hundred!
Mrs. Garcia held her four month old daughter, who, a few years from now, will most likely be getting the good old lemonade stand education like her older brother and sister.
More cupcakes arrived and the lesson of supply and demand was being realized. The cupcakes unlike the first two dozen were very plain with no frosting or sprinkles, but the price remained the same. Lesson learned.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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