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All Seventh-Graders at this School Brave the ‘Shark Tank’

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At International Community School (Singapore) (ICS), all seventh graders get to develop their own products and then present to a panel of ‘Sharks’ as part of their Design Technology class – talk about real-world education!

Education these days isn’t just about acing exams or mastering sports and extracurricular activities. International Community School (Singapore) (ICS) gives its students all the skills they’ll require to thrive and lead positive change in the real world. So how does this international school with an American curriculum and Christian worldview excite and challenge students in a way that gets them to master innovation, creativity and collaboration in a real-world scenario? One example is the seventh-grade Design Technology class where students design and develop their own products, create a business and then present their creations to a panel of judges in a Shark Tank-inspired event!

Seventh-grade Design Technology class

The 7th Grade Design Technology class teaches students to be innovative designers, creative communicators, empowered learners, and global collaborators to help prepare them for the real world. After an initial process of forming business teams, students then create resumes, interview for the CEO position and then the CEOs interview for the roles of CFO, Marketing, and Research & Development with the rest of the students.

Students then brainstorm ideas, ensuring that their selected business idea is in alignment with any one of the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) which will earn them $50 in seed money. For example, the Terra Plants project saw students create a self-watering pot with recyclable materials, a goal that aligned with SDG 11 – to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

Prior to presenting their ideas at the Shark Tank-style presentation, each student group receives mentoring sessions. They also participate in a Product Expo to gain additional feedback about their groundbreaking prototypes.

Shark Tank judges are part of the ICS community

Once they’ve completed the planning and design stage, students then present their ideas to the Shark Tank’s panel of judges comprising business people from the ICS community. One of the “Sharks” was Leigh Wong, Stripe’s APAC Communications Director, who noted that the entire Design Technology project is a “very good, practical project that helps students hone sharp business acumen alongside positive values. Seeing all the other student projects and hearing the feedback from other sharks/judges also made me wish I was even half as smart as some of these students when I was their age!”

What students gain from these entrepreneurial projects

This seventh-grade Design Technology project doesn’t just teach children to tap into their entrepreneurial and creative prowess; it also helps them learn about their true capabilities while honing skills like time management, flexibility, collaboration and communication. Students are also asked to reflect on their own contributions, taking note of the challenges faced and what they would change about their process if any.

One ICS student shared, “A roadblock that I faced was the problem of needing to work on the marketing webpage even though the final product wasn’t done yet. I overcame this by creating a more flexible and adaptable design that both looked good and also could withstand any major changes made to the product design. This taught me that I should be aware that plans can change, and instead of expecting them to remain the same and then complaining when they don’t, I should instead expect them to change and be prepared by making what I do adaptable for those situations.”

Want to see how your child can thrive at ICS? Sign up for a personalised campus tour to see how ICS imparts its educational excellence to students.

International Community School (Singapore), 27A Jubilee Road, Singapore 128575, [email protected], Tel: (+65) 6776 7435,

Brought to you in partnership with International Community School (Singapore)

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