Although they’re only in fourth grade, students in Tim Cammisa’s class at already are getting real-world business experience.
Each year, Cammisa’s students draft business letters to companies that interest them. Some of the most popular choices over the years have been Microsoft's Xbox, Apple, Uglydoll and Justice, a hip clothing store for girls.
“You name it, we’ve written to them,” Cammisa said.
The students typically receive a generic response from the companies they write to—until this year.
After penning a letter to The San Francisco Music Box Company, Evy McLaughlin received a personal response—sent to the school—from the music box specialty company.
“I got so happy,” Evy said of learning while in class that she had received a missive. “I was so excited.”
The 10-year-old explained she had wanted to find a unique company for the lesson, which took place in March. After some brainstorming, the snow-globe enthusiast came up with the idea of reaching out to the music box company, which also sells musical snow globes.
“I’ve always been into music, and I’ve always been into snow globes,” she said. “Why would I think of anything else to write to?”
With a little help from Cammisa, she found The San Francisco Music Box Company online. Cammisa’s project parameters require students to suggest ways the different companies could improve their products. Evy recommended in her letter that the music company update their tunes to include modern songs, including hits by pop sensation Katy Perry.
It was music to the company executives’ ears.
In her reply, Mary Siscos, director of marketing for The San Francisco Music Box Company, thanked Evy for her ideas.
“Yes, we are working on some new ideas for our tweens—kids that are ages 8-14—so your ideas and suggestion are very important to us!” Siscos wrote.
To further thank Evy for her letter, the company also offered to send a music box from its catalog to Cammisa’s students, free of cost.
“That letter just made their day,” Cammisa said.
Taking a diplomatic approach, Evy polled her classmates on which music box they liked best. Together, they chose an elaborate glass globe, topped with the Wicked Witch’s hat, which shows Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz being carried off by flying monkeys. The 11-inch musical globe (which retails for $125) also plays the tune Optimistic Voices.
Once the music box arrives at the school, Evy said she would like to keep it in her classroom for all students to enjoy.
“I want to keep it in here for the rest of the year,” she said.