This lockdown is getting to me day after day.
I was stuck at home with tiny humans who scream and fight like nobody’s business — driving me up against the wall every day.
I’m sure you’ll agree with me: children have tons of energy. They can play, play, and play the whole day with their friends.
The moment they’re locked at home, they’ll argue like angry bulls ramming at each other, trying to release their stress and energy…
Well, I can’t blame them. They were bored and it wasn’t their fault.
But my stress level was reaching its boiling point.
While I was constantly looking for things online to keep my children occupied…
My eldest son came up to me suddenly and asked, “Mommy, I want to earn money… What can I do?”
To be honest, I was shocked. I didn’t expect a 13-year-old teenager would even think of earning money.
However, at that time, I didn’t know this question would give birth to creating Malaysia’s first children-focused online marketplace.
And you’re about to find out how it all happened?
So, back to the question.
My son’s question threw me off balance, for sure, but I didn’t want to pour cold water on my son. So, I suggested YouTube.
It seems easy, right? Just hit the record button, publish and earn money.
But, getting on YouTube took more time and energy than I expected.
My husband and I had to help him plan, write scripts, record, edit, and publish the video.
On the other hand, my kids got the easiest task: talk only.
One week later, all of us gave up on YouTube.
But my son insisted on earning money. I didn’t know why he was so stubborn but I found out his real reasons months later — which I’ll tell you in the story in a minute.
So, I suggested collecting newspapers and carton boxes to sell.
And off they went.
After spending more than half a day under the hot sun, my children collected 2kg of newspapers and carton boxes. And all they get is RM2.
Can you believe it?
A few days going around the neighbourhood, asking for newspapers and carton boxes, carrying them back home under the blazing sun, knee-height piled up (my knee) newspapers and carton boxes yielded only RM2!?
And they have to split between 3 of them to boot…
My heart broke a little when I saw their disappointed faces…
Thinking they’ll give up, all 3 of my children came to me and said in unison, “Mommy, what else can we do?”
Seeing their determined faces and glowing eyes, I decided to do whatever it takes to help them shine.
“There’s still one thing you can do. Make something and sell.”
My children started making homemade bath bombs and selling them online.
They were having so much fun creating and I felt so happy seeing them learning and enjoying themselves.
But, there was a huge issue here: Facebook, Instagram, Shopee, or Lazada are not designed for young children.
There’s not a single platform in Malaysia designed to help children sell products or services online in a safe marketplace (at least, not that I know of).
Well, since there isn’t any platform that I can use, might as well I create one, right?
After months of planning and designing, FirstSeed officially went live on the 1st of August 2021 and started off with a BANG!
We had 20 kids-seller signed up and 5 coaches jumped onboard.
To be honest with you, my children are the true founders of My FirstSeed. Without them persevering, I would never have thought of creating this safe platform for them.
On a side note, months later, I asked my eldest son why he wanted to earn money so desperately, and what he told me melted my heart.
You see, I was terminated shortly after the first lockdown in June 2020. Losing one breadwinner was like losing an arm and a leg in the family.
At the same time, my son wanted to enrol in a private school.
In Malaysia, private schools cost anywhere between 5 to 10 times more than a government school.
He knew he needed money to further his studies.
So, he decided to earn it himself instead of burdening his parents (me).
After hearing the truth from him, my heart melted… I hugged him tightly and whispered, “I love you, son…”
FirstSeed’s initial idea is to cure children’s boredom, especially during the lockdown.
But as I observe my children creating products, talking with customers, selling things online, and more…
I noticed they are learning what entrepreneurship is all about!
I call them kidpreneurs!
My kidpreneurs are learning how to communicate with people, how to make arrangements and solve problems and be resourceful…
While enjoying the journey to the max.
All this while, I’ve been nagging them to think for themselves, to think out of the box, to have a little common sense, and solve this on their own…
In the end, they never even tried.
But if you allow them to do things they love, they’ll naturally learn all the soft skills that come with the experience.
Your Kids’s Future Begins With You
This experience led me to realize that my kids’s future really begins with me.
Allowing them to experience kidpreneurship is one of the best things I can do for them.
They’re learning the skills they need to be a successful human without fussing about it (thank god).
Communications, creativity, problem-solving, critical thinking, people management, teamworking (with siblings), you name it.
On the other hand, I also noticed one bizarre thing.
The skills they learned from enrichment centres like creativity, speaking, and problem-solving actually get applied in their kidpreneurship!
This really got me thinking.
We, parents, send our children to schools and enrichment classes to make sure they learn and become successful humans.
But the problem is, while there are many classes to learn from…
There are very few places to apply those skills in real life (except until after they graduate from school)
That is when I decided to design FirstSeed as your children’s first seed of kidpreneurship journey.
Where it becomes the place for your children and my children to:
If this lockdown is getting to you and your children, trying FirstSeed with your children is a great way to shift the atmosphere.