Quoc AnhRaffles Institution, Singapore
Chen XiangRaffles Institution, Singapore
Wei HanRaffles Institution, Singapore
DominicRaffles Institution, Singapore
KesmondRaffles Institution, Singapore
KevinRaffles Institution, Singapore
15 & under
Kelvin YapRaffles Institution, Singapore
Social Sciences & Culture
Online Activity / Game
Reading Guide / Book Guide
Teacher Resources (Lesson Plans, Worksheets)
Video / Sound
As animal lovers, our team came together in this ThinkQuest project due to our similar interests. As a team, we went on two fieldtrips to Noah’s Ark, but, one problem that we faced was that Weihan was in a cast having injured his leg. Therefore, travelling to and fro across the border to Noah’s Ark became quite a challenge. However, we knew that this was just the beginning. We divided work according to our strengths (for eg Kevin the tech-savvy one took charge of web design, Dominic the manager took charge of taking photos during our fieldtrips, Weihan took charge of writing since he is more proficient, Chenxiang took down notes during our trip and Kesmond took charge of filming and editing any multimedia. Not to forget, Quoc Anh in Vietnam who helped with our survey.) Each member critiqued each other’s work and peer edited in order to constantly improve its quality. Of course, there were certain times when there were several conflicts between us when we disagreed with each other. However, these conflicts were solved eventually and everyone took critiques objectively. Only once did our teacher-mentor step in to put things back on track. Work was assigned equally between members, but due to the amount of commitments at school, often some of us were unavailable, and in which case the other members would help cover each other’s responsibilities. Our team was very cooperative with each other and helped where we could. Also, with one of members in Vietnam, it was difficult to contact him. Fortunately, with the use of email and instant messaging, we managed to overcome these difficulties. We also organized regular meetings to finalize the content and put the website together, and when problems arose on deciding what to include to the website, we would sit down and discuss the broad picture and try to assess the appropriateness of the content wholly; we also benefited from consultations with our teacher-mentor, who together with our leader put everything back in focus. We worked efficiently together by tapping on our strengths. As mentioned, Kevin is good with computers, Kesmond, with flash animations, Dominic, with organization and photography, and the other members were skilled in research and compilation work. Thus, we strategically tapped on each other’s individual strengths to create the content and website. On the whole, though there were several disputes but that did not mar our team collaboration and together we are extremely contented to be able to work successfully to complete this interest-based service-learning project.
Five of our team members are Singaporeans while one is Vietnamese. All of us come from different backgrounds and cultures. Our international partner was initially unsure about joining our project, but after chatting online and getting to know each other, we became comfortable. Being from Vietnam, Quoc Anh naturally has different views and takes on this topic, which was useful in our discussions and definitely provides a diverse view. Vietnam being economically, geographically and structurally different from Singapore, gives us extra ground for comparisons. Weihan, though Singaporean, used to live in Malaysia for a period of time, thus, he was able to provide us with a diverse range of views from Malaysia. He also contacted his relatives in Malaysia to help gather some information. Through the help of email, instant messaging and meet-ups, we were able to finalize and settle any disputes which we might have. Though our team is very diverse with many views, we did not let this cripple us, but instead we let the variety of opinions and differences serve as our strength. Diversity is crucial in our project as our topic is a subjective one and relies a lot on qualitative data. It comes as a regret that Quoc Anh has only a conversational level of English, therefore he could not directly participate in content writing, but we made it a point to clarify his points and to check that facts are accurate. Being diverse not just in backgrounds, but in skills too, this also affected our process. Quoc Anh proved effective translating and carrying out surveys and data collection, which Weihan proved to be an effective teacher during our lessons with Chaoyang School children. Kesmond and Kevin are good with computers and Dominic helped coordinate everything. Our team leader managed to handle any conflicts well by incorporating ideas from all group members. When we collected information from the various sources, including the internet, books, newspapers, surveys and interviews, we did cross-comparisons in order to verify the reliability of the information. In addition, information from Vietnam, Malaysia (all our 3 countries being at different developmental stages) and other countries was used for further analysis. With members from other countries, it helped us in gathering this information. We tapped on our group diversity and in the process we found out more about each other’s culture, and practices and how we can apply them to the project.