What Is It?
MicroSociety is a national educational model that provides compelling real-life learning opportunities for K-8 students through the creation and operation of miniature societies. These societies, held during part of the school day, enhance academic lessons and provide platforms for young people to develop into leaders, entrepreneurs, creative forces and confident citizens. They also generate intrinsic motivation to do well academically because students understand school is key to their success.
MSI has a 30-year track record and supports 120 educational sites across the United States and in five countries. It has proven successful with every segment of the population — disadvantaged and advantaged, minority and majority — and has impacted the lives of more than 450,000 children and youth globally.The Micro Model
Student & School Diversity
We work with students of diverse backgrounds…
- 33% Hispanic, 31% African American, 29% Caucasian, 7% other
- 85% elementary grades, 15% middle grades
…in all kinds of schools, in all kinds of settings.
- 64% public, 18% charter, 15% magnet, 3% private
- 66% urban, 19% rural, 15% suburban
- 90% implement the whole school model and 10% the after-school curriculum
MicroSociety lifts student academic achievement, improves attitudes and engagement, and reduces discipline problems. It has a long record of success with at-risk populations, English language learners, and children with special needs. All MicroSociety students develop vital career and social emotional skills as they start and manage their own business ventures, nonprofits, and government agencies. We prepare them to navigate the future workplace, become active citizens, and take on our global challenges.See the Results
The story of MicroSociety began in a Brooklyn classroom in 1967, where George H. Richmond, a young teacher, struggled to get his 5th grade students to pay attention in class. Fearing they would be consigned to lives of poverty without an education, he devised a creative plan to fire up their desire to learn and create lives of possibility.
His new way of teaching ultimately became a movement that has reached hundreds of schools and changed hundreds of thousands of lives. Watch our story to learn more.
Young Author, Anti-Bullying Activist Urges Youth To Serve Their Communities, Chase Their Dreams
Youth Now! With ChanceJahkil Jackson is a 14-year-old author, anti-bullying activist, and philanthropist from Chicago who has helped thousands of people who are homeless. Through his nonprofit organization, Project I Am, Jakhil is on a mission to motivate youth to get involved in their communities and to chase their dreams no matter their age. Jahkil’s accomplishments include being recognized by President Barack Obama as one of 2017’s most influential people, being named a Youth Ambassador for Heartland Alliance, and much more.
"Micro was huge for me and that the job is the definition of 'you get out what you put in.' I know that was the case for me, and its certainly had a lasting impact on my life"
Danny Durazo-Former Intern
“MicroSociety – An antedote for school boredom”
Barrons 1100 Words You Need To Know – 40th Anniversary, Fifth Edition
"With MicroSociety, no child is left behind. We have learned that the hearing and deaf worlds don’t have to clash. With Micro, we in the deaf community are connected to the hearing world through our experiences and our jobs.”
Milagros, Middle School, Bruce Street School for the Deaf, NJ
“Micro helps you relate to your school work. For example, when I was V.P. of Marketing, I had to fill out a monthly marketing sheet that required math, reading, and writing. They were all combined and helped me appreciate my skills.”
Toni, 5th grade, El Paso, Texas
“In high school, everyone sees a big difference between the kids who went through Sageland Elementary School and those who didn’t. MicroSociety kids work for the challenge; they want to strive to achieve. Other kids want to just slide by. Micro kids want to make sure they are prepared for the real world and ready for college. They know they have a future!”
Tanya, 10th grade, El Paso, Texas
“Our standardized test scores rocketed with our first year of implementing Micro. Our student attendance dramatically increased. If they come to school they can learn.”
Jim Otto, Principal, Philadelphia
“MicroSociety gives bilingual students the opportunity to use their language skills as they would in real world settings and they experience success on the job. As a result, they excel in school.”
Jorge Ramirez, Principal, California
"Micro taught me to be responsible for my actions, to be responsible – period (which not many kids my age know how to do)."
Ava, 8th grade, Matthew Gilbert Middle School
"Micro makes you more aware of your surroundings. Not just focusing on yourself but what other people need, what they are going through."
Laurie, 11th grade, Alumnus
"For numeracy, for financial literacy, for critical thinking skills, this is the highest application of those skills in the new curriculum. I'm really excited to see something like this."
David Eggen Minister of Education Alberta, Canada
We believe in the power of kids and in their potential to do extraordinary things so much so that we challenge the status quo about who they are, what they can do, and how and from whom they learn. We help young people create their own world inside school and turn over the reins for them to manage it. We encourage them to design and manufacture products, sell them in their own marketplace of ideas, write and enforce their own laws, and along the way to grapple with the moral and ethical challenges that arise. Through the MicroSociety system, students learn the value and utility of their curriculum while making sense of their world.