Published on November 28, 2018
Three Angus steers from the HVGS farm, three classes of eager Year 9 commerce students and an interclass challenge to raise cash from the steers, has resulted in an engaging experience with real-world learning applications.
The Money for Moo Project – a joint initiative between the Commerce and Agriculture faculties – involved taking the meat from the School’s Angus steers and selling it on to the School community. Each class was allocated a steer with the challenge to make more cash from their beast than the other classes.
“As a class, we had to work out the potential value of our steer, and devise a clear business proposal,” said Charlotte Coakes-Jenkins, Year 9 commerce student. “Our class was split into three teams: finance, promotion, and sales and customer relations. We created meat packs and then we considered how to make our project achievable, including advertising the meat packs, costing the packs and reaching customers.”
Every part of the project was authentic. From considering the weight of the steers, their sellable amount and the cost of the farmer’s labour, through to the transportation costs to the abattoir and ultimately the butcher’s preparation costs; student proposals considered every possible factor to arrive at a break-even cost and then determine a profit margin.
“The project taught me the real-life advantages and disadvantages of business and how promoting and selling a product functions in the world,” said Charlotte. “We understood first-hand how to bring a product to market, how customers related and responded to our product and the marketing involved to make a profit.”
“We got a real feel of the effort that goes into a fully functioning business.”
Working with a tangible, rather than hypothetical product, benefited students learning and gave them a different perspective on business. “If I had to do this project again, I would think about how we could expand our target market to maximise profit,” said Charlotte.
The money that was made from selling the meat packs, will be reinvested in the purchase of more steers for the Agriculture faculty.
Not only was Money for Moo an engaging and enterprising learning experience, but it was award winning too! The program took out third prize in the ‘Best Learning experience for innovation creativity or entrepreneurialism, in the school or classroom’ at the Hunter Young Minds Awards.