Schoolboy entrepreneur celebrates four years in business

Crawford Johnston with Mike Greene
Crawford Johnston with Mike Greene

A schoolboy who runs his own successful business is celebrating four years of entrepreneurship.

Crawford Johnston, a sixth former at Oundle School, invented Crawford’s Creative Writing Magic Money Cards to help youngsters gain top marks in English exams.

The 17-year-old originally created the cards to help him with English grammar and wanted something fun so “money” is allocated to each card with pupils being encouraged to use more cards to increase their winnings.

Speaking about the growth of his idea, Crawford said: “It’s been an exhilarating journey so far.”

Crawford was recently invited to present a workshop at the UK’s largest home education festival and Mike Greene, star of Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire programme, told the teenager after meeting him for a second time and hearing about his progress: “I am increasingly impressed with your focus and business aims.”

Crawford has some influential support.

The chief executive of the Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce has offered to mentor Crawford, who himself gained a top grade A* GCSE for English.

And businessman and Government adviser Doug Richard, who starred in the first two series of Dragon’s Den, described the schoolboy businessman as “a little Apple” at an Entrepreneurs and Education Programme seminar.

Crawford’s cards are now sold on five continents.

The 56-card set is designed to fit in with the National Curriculum at Key Stages 2 and 3 and allows exploration of simple concepts such as time and temperature, as well as the more advanced usage of metaphors, assonance, alliteration and onomatopoeia.

They include creative structures for different ways to start a short story, and are tailored to help children aged nine to 15.

They can be used in the classroom or at home and have been tested in numerous schools.

They are also flexible enough to help adults improve their English language skills.

For more details go to