In preparation for our Spring Showcase, the students learned about retail markets and then planned to make their own lemonade stand. We followed the process from farm to market, including advertising our stand.

Step One: Exploring Citrus Production

First, we decided to create a lemonade stand for our Spring Journey Showcase! We decided we needed to learn more about lemonade in order to make an awesome product, therefore we researched how citrus is grown and harvested. Then, we used shared writing to make a list of supplies for our lemonade production. Our most important item was lemons, so we decided what better way to make FRESH lemonade than to pick our own lemons? We took a field trip to a citrus grove and were surprised to see that the lemons had already been harvested. Using our problem-solving skills, we chose to pick oranges instead and make orange iced tea.

Standards covered included researching, shared writing, sorting, adding, observing plant growth, and problem-solving.

Shared writing of supplies for a lemonade stand

Sierra: Are those baby trees?

Ronan: Look, it’s a baby orange!

As we walked, Sierra noticed the new orange trees being planted. Once in the groves, Ronan saw a small, green orange that had just emerged from an orange blossom. These observations helped the students deepen their understanding of the life cycle of an orange.

Walking to the groves
Testing color and firmness to find ripe oranges
Seeing a truck transporting oranges through the grove

Step Two: Creating a Product

Now it was time to use our resources to make the goods we were going to sell. By grouping our oranges into groups of ten, we counted that we had 34 oranges! We peeled and juiced them using forks, juicers, and our hands. The peels went into a simple syrup used to sweeten the tea, and the juice went into the tea as well. We also needed to decide how much to charge for our product, and since we just learned about coins, we thought that 50 cents, or two quarters, would be fair.

Standards covered included counting by tens and ones, describing and using tools, following multi-step directions, and identifying coins.

Jadyn: Yeah, I liked squeezing with my hands.

Cayden: The fork works good, too!
Jadyn: Yeah, I liked squeezing with my hands. Cayden: The fork works good, too!
Teacher: What was the best way to juice the oranges?

Maddox: The juicer was easy, but my hands got out the most juice.
Teacher: What was the best way to juice the oranges? Maddox: The juicer was easy, but my hands got out the most juice.

After trying out several juicing methods, most students agreed that squeezing the fruit yielded the most juice, even though it was hard work! This process helped them with their processing skills as they analyzed information they gathered.

Step Three: Advertising

The last step to get ready for the Spring Journey Showcase was to advertise our product. We had been working on opinion and persuasive writing, so we put our skills to the test! By coming up with reasons that people would want to buy our orange iced tea, we made posters to hang up outside of the school for the day of the event.

Standards covered included planning and composing opinion writing.

The students thought of many reasons that people would want to buy our orange tea on the day of the event (we had some HOT weather), and they included descriptive words on their posters, like “cold,” “delicious,” “yummy,” and “refreshing.”

Reflection

Through this project, the students were able to use their knowledge of economics to create a real-life business. They were able to see how products are made, from beginning to end, and how to use their powers of persuasion to entice customers.

Next Steps

To extend the real-life application of running a business, the students could use math skills to calculate their profits and then collaborate to decide how to use the profits to benefit the whole class and/or school.