Ryan, the pint-sized star of Ryan ToysReview, has just been named by Forbes* as one of the world’s highest-paid YouTube stars of 2017.
Ryan shares eighth position on the rich list.
Ryan, whose surname is unknown, makes more than $A14.6 million — just by opening and reviewing new toys.
His channel was launched in March 2015 when Ryan was three, and it now has more than 10 million followers.
Ryan’s mother Loann quit her job as a high school science teacher to work on the channel full-time, and it’s a move that’s paid off.
In an interview with TubeFilter, Ryan’s mother explained how the phenomenon started.
“Ryan was watching a lot of toy review channels — some of his favourites are EvanTubeHD and Hulyan Maya — because they used to make a lot of videos about Thomas the Tank Engine, and Ryan was super into Thomas,” she said.
“One day, he asked me, ‘How come I’m not on YouTube when all the other kids are?’ So we just decided — yeah, we can do that. Then, we took him to the store to get his very first toy — I think it was a Lego train set — and it all started from there.”
Ryan’s channel took off after a video of him opening and reviewing a Giant Egg Surprise went viral.
Since then, he has posted daily reviews of new toys and foods for kids.
Loann and husband Sean, a structural engineer, are putting the YouTube earnings into a college savings account for Ryan and a trust fund for him and his twin sisters, Emma and Kate.
While the family have struck gold with the channel, Sean and Loann say the family will only continue making the videos until Ryan gets bored with them.
So could you become the next YouTube sensation?
YouTube expert Josh Cohen told The Verge website there were more lucrative* opportunities just waiting to be taken.
“It’s the biggest of this genre* of programming that is getting billions of views a week on YouTube. Really nobody is talking about it, but it’s crazy once you start scratching the surface,” he said.
- raking in: collecting
- Forbes: A leading source for reliable news and updated analysis on Investing
- lucrative: producing a great amount of money
- genre: a style or category of art, music, or literature
LISTEN TO TODAY’S STORY
1. Ryan ToysReview
Read or listen to the article carefully then answer the following questions.
- How does Ryan earn so much money? Write a short description of his job. Include how much he earns.
- Why did Ryan and his family start making these videos?
- What was the first toy that he reviewed?
- How often does he post videos?
- What does it mean that the family have ‘struck gold’ with the channel?
- Why do you think that so many people like to watch Ryan, play with and review toys?
- Have you watched any of Ryan’s videos? What do you think of them?
- YouTube expert Josh Cohen has said there are more ‘lucrative opportunities’ waiting to be taken – what does this mean?
- What other opportunities can you think of? Would there be one you are interested in pursuing?
- Extension: Would you like to have a job like this?
- What are the Positives and Negatives of a six year old having a job reviewing toys online? Draw up a two column table to record your ideas.
Time: Allow approximately 40 minutes.
Curriculum links: English, Digital Tecnologies
Activity 2: Money, Money, Money!
Solve these problems using your mathematical skills. You may need information from the article to help you. You may also need a calculator.
- If Ryan earned $14.6 million dollars each year he has been making these videos, how much has he earnt to date? Assume each year he has worked a full year.
- If Ryan continues to make toy review videos, until his 11th birthday, how much more money will he earn? (Assume he earns the same amount each year) How much will he have earnt in total?
- If he worked a total of 7 years earning $14.6 million dollars and had to share his money evenly with his siblings, how much would they get each?
Extension: If you earnt $14.6 million dollars – what would you do with it?
Make a list of what you would do with it. Include an approximate amount next to each item. Try and account for all the money. If you are not sure of how much things cost, you may be able to research this via the internet. You do not have to ‘buy’ things with all the money – you could choose to save some in a bank account and/or donate money to charity.
Time: Allow approximately 40 minutes.
Curriculum link: English, Mathematics
Extra resources: Calculators, Access to internet for research.
After reading the article, with a partner, highlight as many connectives as you can find in pink. Discuss if these are being used as conjunctions, or to join ideas and create flow.
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