Students of Wulastukw Elementary School (WES) have been exploring their entrepreneurial skills through “Pawsitive Productions,” a business aimed at raising money by creating and distributing hand-made pet blankets.
Pawsitive Productions has been running from November 2017 to June 2018 and was facilitated by teachers Marriane Waite and Ryan Ryan. After brainstorming ways to raise money, both teachers and their students decided to make blankets for pets because “it was something that they could all do together.”
As a team, both the teachers and the students decided to create two different sizes of blankets, because “people and pets come in different sizes, so our blankets should too.” Blankets were designed and created by the students with recycled materials including used clothing and fabric, all of which were donated by members of Kingsclear First Nation. According to the students, “learning how to cut and sew fabric, meeting new people and working with friends” were just some of the highlights of working on Pawsitive Productions.
The blankets we’re promoted at the Boyce farmers market, within the school’s newspaper and at a plenary held by the Joint Economic Development Initiative (JEDI). The 3x3 blankets were sold for $10 and the 4x4 blankets were sold for $15. JEDI also contributed to the project by creating the 3D logos for the blankets.
All of the money being raised from this project is being donated to the SPCA – which they expect to be between $400-$500.
When asked what they learned from running their own business, some of the kids say that “it took a while to get going, but it was fun” while others say that the most important thing they learned is that “teamwork is important” and “you can’t be shy when talking to people.”
For those interested in running a business, one student recommends to “not be shy,” while another says that you should “always do your best and never give up.”
While Pawsitive Productions may be coming to an end, readers should keep an eye out for what WES has coming up as Waite and Ryan say that there will be a similar project in the upcoming school year.
This project is part of a greater initiative called The Learning Partnership (TLP) that provides students with the opportunity to create a small business of their choice every year. TLP also works with George Street Middle School and has previously worked with other students from the Kingsclear community to create and sell children’s books where all of the proceeds were donated to the Halifax Children’s IWK hospital .