By the end of this lesson, students will be able to:

- Understand the essential components of a business plan.

- Identify market opportunities and conduct a basic SWOT analysis.

- Create a basic business plan for selling eclipse-related merchandise.


1 hour and 30 minutes

Materials Needed:

- Whiteboard/Smartboard

- Markers

- Laptops or tablets for research

- Handout on business plan components

- SWOT analysis template handouts

- Calculators

Lesson Outline:

Introduction (10 minutes)

1. Class discussion (3 min)

- What is a business plan and why is it important?

- Can anyone recall what a solar or lunar eclipse is?

2. Motivation (2 min)

- Imagine you could earn money by selling merchandise during an eclipse event. How would you plan it?

3. Objective (1 min)

- Today, we are going to learn how to create a business plan focused on selling eclipse-related merchandise.

4. Materials Handout (4 min)

- Distribute handout outlining the components of a business plan and SWOT analysis templates.

Component 1: Business Description (15 minutes)

1. Discussion (5 min)

- What type of merchandise could you sell?

- Who is your target customer?

2. Activity (10 min)

- In pairs, write a brief business description focusing on eclipse merchandise.

- Share with the class.

Component 2: Market Analysis (20 minutes)

1. Discussion (5 min)

- What are some things you need to know about your market?

- Introduce the concept of SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats).

2. Activity (15 min)

- In pairs, conduct a simple SWOT analysis for your merchandise business.

- Use laptops/tablets for research if necessary.

- Share the key points with the class.

Component 3: Marketing and Sales Plan (15 minutes)

1. Discussion (5 min)

- What is the 4P's model (Product, Price, Place, Promotion)?

2. Activity (10 min)

- In pairs, outline your marketing and sales plan based on the 4P's model.

- Share with the class.

Component 4: Financial Projections (15 minutes)

1. Discussion (5 min)

- What are some costs you would incur?

- How would you price your merchandise?

2. Activity (10 min)

- In pairs, create a simple financial projection (revenue, costs, profit).

- Share with the class.

Conclusion (10 minutes)

1. Review (5 min)

- Summarize the key components of a business plan.

2. Homework Assignment (2 min)

- Compile the work done today into a formal 1-2 page business plan for your eclipse merchandise business.

3. Questions & Closing (3 min)

- Any questions?

- Next class, we will review and provide feedback on your business plans.


- Participation in class discussion and activities.

- Completion of a 1-2 page business plan as homework.


- For students who require additional support, provide one-on-one guidance during activity time and offer simplified SWOT and business plan templates.


- Students can present their business plans in the next class for peer review.

- Consider a field trip to a local business or invite a guest speaker to discuss the practicalities of starting a business

September 13, 2023 — Roger Sarkis

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