A not so cheesy business plan
We create a business plan for our cheese start-up
secondary school/post-secondary school students
ideal group size: 18-24, split in groups of 3
1 session of 3 hours
1 hour pre-reading required
Activity can be extended to 2 or 3 sessions of 3 hours each,
WOW priority topics covered:
- Communication skills
- Media literacy
Expected learning outcomes
learn to work in groups, retrieve information from other groups and share their own findings
identify the advantages of collaboration in a competitive situation
Critical thinking skills
ability to research, select and triangulate data
ability to prioritise a course of action based on research, and to justify choices
recognise and summarise relevant information;
stronger learners will be able to demonstrate how data can be manipulated to their advantage
produce artefacts based on storytelling techniques, using a variety of analogue and digital tools
describe and justify the choices of artefacts
draft an engaging communication strategy
Exploration: students will be asked to explore a specific topic (cheese market), and to produce a short market research based on a structured approach (The 7 Ps of Marketing, published by the Chartered Institute of Marketing, 2005)
Place / Environment
Pre-requisite reading: at home Workshop delivery: in the classroom If appropriate, consider delivering the workshop in a public library, with easy access to surrounding shops to carry out some field research
Tools / Materials / Resources
- Poster paper
- A4 paper, blank
- Coloured pencils
- 1 white envelope per group, with instructions for group activities
- 1 red envelope per group, with secret instructions
- Laptop and projector for workshop leader; PPT format required (either Microsoft or Google Docs)
- 1 laptop per group, ideally 2-in-1 device, with photo and video camera functionality
- Stable WiFi connection
- 1 USB key per group, for show&tell and for back-up purposes (optional)
- Will make use of free online functionalities (e.g. Google Docs, Lino.It, Pixton, etc.)
- 1 Lego set per group, ideally to include 3-4 figures, enough building blocks to build a small, colourful house and several props (e.g. pets, tools,
wheels, flowers, etc.)
Step by step description of the activity / content
The trainer will start by checking the understanding of the requisite prereading
(7 Ps of Marketing, Ezine cheese scenario).
The students will be split in groups of ideally 3 students each. Be aware that
not everyone will have read the requisite material, so make sure to spread
those who have not across different groups.
The first task for the groups will be to produce a storyboard for an advert of
the Ezine cheese using Pixton (the activity needs to be preloaded; inform the
students they will have 20 minutes for the activity; if they are working
creatively, give them a few additional minutes towards the end). When
finished, the groups will present their story and justify their choices (60
seconds maximum per group).
Each group will carry out a market research on one topic, e.g.:
- Cheese Market (figures, facts, value, competition, alternative markets,
- Regulations (food agencies, ingredients, hygiene, EU, etc.)
- Distribution channels (retail, restaurants, events, fairs, etc.)
- Cheese production (process, manufacture, infrastructure, associated
Each group to choose an emissary to go on fact finding missions (i.e. retrieve
valuable information from other groups). Each group will present their
findings in the form of graphs etc.
Time planned for research and presentation: 60 minutes
Based on their research outcome, each group will be asked to produce a 3D artefact representing the branding, naming, product posters, etc. using
Microsoft Paint or similar programmes.
Each group will also produce a story board for an advertising campaign, using
Lego figures and a digital camera. The final narrative should be between 30 –
60 seconds long.
The groups will present their artefacts and justify their choices, they will have
2 minutes to do this. Total time for the artefacts and presentation should be
no longer than 60 minutes.
As a final activity, the students will be asked to reflect on the differences in
content and quality between the initial storyboard created on Pixton and the
final artefacts. Ideally, with little prompting they should be able to identify the
importance of accurate and comprehensive research, the value of
collaboration, etc. (5-10 minutes final reflection).
FeedbackTake pictures during the workshop activities to gather objective information
about body language, concentration of students, potential disruptions, etc.
Use the final activity to gather qualitative feedback from participants.
Assessment & Evaluation
Optional: following the 7Ps of Marketing template, ask students to complete a
plan for a planned launch of Ezine cheese in the market of their choice.