What if all children thought of themselves as entrepreneurs? That question inspired Reuben Steiger to start 8andUp in April 2013. In a pilot 6-week session he challenged 22 kids to use a $50 budget to invent, design and launch a product. The results inspired him. “My Aha moment came when I saw the kids’ ideas”. These have ranged from a machine that separates eggs from yolks to an arcade claw machine-made from recycled materials. “I realized that if our classes were fun, we could change the basic model of education”. He is doing just that — through hands-on activities, thought-provoking topics and the notion that failing is a good thing. Kids in the class unlock their creative potential and willingness to take a chance on an idea, no matter how farfetched.
In 2014 the Princeton based company expanded to New York, added new curriculum and was featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal . What we love is that they’ve retained a loyalty to their very local roots. “Princeton will always be our epicenter,” said Steiger. “My kids are here and I hope to continue building a curriculum for Phoebe and Theo as they grow up.”
These entrepreneurial classes start on September 14th and include the invention class, “What If”?, an apprentice-like teamwork class called Superpowers and the newest offering – “Creative Code”. You can register for classes on their website or follow the company on Facebook and Twitter.