This article explores a relatively new concept in funding start up businesses called crowd funding.

Getting Started

Appropriate Subject Area(s):

Entrepreneurship, investments, financing a business, marketing

Key Questions to Explore:

  • What is crowd funding?
  • Why would investors be interested in investing their money this way?

New Terminology:

Crowd funding, equity, great equalizer

Materials Needed:

Six different coloured markers, flip chart paper


Study and Discussion Activity

Introduction to lesson and task:

This lesson explores the concept of crowd funding and evaluates it from various perspectives.

Action (lesson plan and task):

  1. Review the concept of de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats with the class.
  2. Distribute the article for reading.
  3. Start by having students form a value line, with those who strongly agree that crowd funding is a good idea at one end of the line, those who strongly disagree at the other end, and those with other or less definite thoughts in the middle. Put a piece of tape on the floor and have students sign their name on it to indicate their current position on the issue.
  4. Divide the class in half by numbering off 1-2 in the line. All the number ones will use de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats to look at crowd funding through the eyes of the investor. All the number twos will use de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats to look at crowd funding through the eyes of the entrepreneur.  You might want to have smaller groups work within each half of the class and then combine groups to share their thinking.
  5. Have each half of the class identify one or two classmates to represent their group and share the highlights of the discussion under each of the six hats.
  6. Allow for questions and dialogue among the students.
  7. Ask students to form a new value line as in #3. Identify students who have changed their position as a result of the discussion.
  8. Explore the rationale for them changing their thinking.

Consolidation of Learning:

Have students prepare a brief essay on the following topic: Crowd funding is said to be a great equalizer. What does this mean? How can budding entrepreneurs take advantage of crowd funding?

Success and Additional Learning

Success Criteria:

Students are able to complete their essay demonstrating a thorough understanding of crowd funding.

Confirming Activity:

Discuss with the class the following questions:

  1. How has wearing the six hats helped them in their thinking about this topic?
  2. Keeping the six hats in mind, how might other potential funders, for example banks or venture capitalists, view crowd funding?