For Teachers

Teachers, are you ready to bring the real-world into your classroom?

We know educators are continually seeking ways to create a dynamic learning experience in their classrooms. The Co-operative Minds program can help by providing free lesson plans that align with curriculum and connect to transferable skills. For example; Grade 7-12 teachers can meet curriculum requirements in Business and Social Studies through our sustainability themed challenges, or Math requirements through our Financial Literacy themed challenges. Grade 2-6 teachers will find links to various streams of curriculum in Math, Language, Art, Drama, Health and Physical Education and Social Studies.

Thanks to our generous program sponsors from the co-operative and credit union sector, our program is free to use for all Ontario teachers.

Have questions? Need support? Our team of co-operative educators and teacher mentors are here to help! 

Email us at: or download our Teacher Brochure.

Access Free Co-operative Business Resources:

Learn more about Co-operative Businesses; what they are and how they work. Did you know there are over 1,100 co-operative businesses in Ontario? Businesses like Gay Lea Foods, The Co-operators and Ocean SprayEmail our team to schedule a free Co-ops 101 Presentation for your class or check out our co-operative resources available below.

  • Co-operative Business Handout for Students
    • Suitable for Grades 9-12
    • Plain language explanation of what a co-operative business is and how they work. Includes links to a diverse range of co-operative businesses from various sectors. (Downloadable PDF)
    • Curriculum connections to Business, Social Studies, Canadian and World Studies
  • Self-Guided Co-ops 101 Slideshow (30 minutes)
    • Suitable for Grades 7-12
    • A fun, visual introduction to the co-operative business model  (Downloadable PDF). 
    • Curriculum connections to Business, Social Studies, Canadian and World Studies

Download resource guide for a two-hour design workshop:

  • Co-operative Case Study Workshop (2 hours)
    • Suitable for Grades 9-12.
    • Lead students through a co-operative design workshop delivered over the course of approximately 120 minutes. This lesson delivers the principles of design through a co-operative lens. Case study included focuses on how to create a small business that fills the needs of multiple stakeholders; ie. business owners, community, customers. (Downloadable PPT)
    • Curriculum connections to Business, Social Studies, Canadian and World Studies
To access additional free resources and lesson plans- register as a teacher partner 
  • Co-operative Minds- Community Building in the Classroom:
    • Recommended for Grades 2-6
    • Six unit lesson plan, includes all resources, culminating task and rubric
    • Curriculum links to Math, Language, Art, Physical Education, Drama, Social Studies
  • Co-operative Minds Full Lesson Plan:
    • Recommended for Grades 7-12
    • 5 unit lesson plan, includes all resources
    • Curriculum links to Math, Business, Social Studies, Canadian and World Studies, Design and Technology
  • ​​​​​​​Co-operative Design Workshop:
    • Recommended for Grades 9-12 
    • Two hour workshop
    • Curriculum links to Business, Social Studies, Canadian and World Studies, Design and Technology

"Doing the Co-operative Minds challenge with Ontario Co-operative Association was like seeing butterflies come out of their cocoon. An authentic challenge like this one was a great opportunity for students to safely take a risk and stretch them out of their comfort zone as they problem solved a real challenge facing CYL. The process was clearly laid out and easy to facilitate. I was impressed with the student’s ability to take on other perspectives and build empathy for players involved in the program. When it came to presenting to the organization I couldn’t believe how great the students were at pitching their solution and clearly explaining their thinking. I highly recommend this for anyone who wants an authentic challenge that will build student confidence and develop leadership skills they can carry with them."

             -Brett Manlow, Teacher at Centennial Secondary School, Belleville, Ontario

Have a question about Co-operative Minds?

Click here to email our team. A member of our team will respond within 24 hours.