1. Description of Our Community
Malaysia located in South East Asia is a peninsular, which is south of Thailand and north of Singapore. Malaysia is a multi-ethnic country. The many different races comprise of Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazans, Ibans, Muruds and other indigenous groups. However the 3 main races are the Malay, Chinese and Indian. Malaysia consists of East Malaysia and West Malaysia. There are 12 states in West Malaysia and 2 states in East Malaysia. The official language of Malaysia is Bahasa Melayu. Other languages include Mandarin, Tamil and English. The official religion is Islam but Malaysians are free to embrace other religions such as Buddhism, Christianity and Hinduism. Malaysia has an equatorial climate with rain throughout the year. Malaysia currently situates the magnificent architecture accredited as the world’s tallest building known as the “Petronas Twin Tower” standing at 452 meter above the street level, 88 storeys high. In addition to that Malaysia also is the location of the KL Tower, the tallest tower in Southeast Asia standing at 421 meter above ground level and 94 meter above sea level. Daily temperatures range from 27 – 32 Celsius. This climate supports a dense equatorial forest, which is the home to many different types of trees. Our community lies in the federated state of Wilayah Perseketuan in west Malaysia. Malaysia is rich with traditions of various races and its variety of local cuisines. People of different races and origin from all around the world unite together during the colorful festive seasonal month, sharing local delicacies and cuisines with family and friends. Malaysia is a land of colorful festive and seasons all year round uniting multi-ethnic groups, which cares for each other living side by side in harmony.
2. Summary of Our Project
Five Form 4 student Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Kepong Baru, aged 16; together we created a website on the variety of Malaysia Cuisine and Delicacies: namely Our Local Community, Local Specialties, Hawkers Special, Mouth Washers, Desert, Nyonya, Local Celebraties Chef, RRecipes For You and About Us. Thanks to this project, we’ve learnt many new things about the variety of Malaysian Cuisine and Delicacies.We found that some of these local specialties and delicacies not only are delicious but also good for our health too, for instance some of our local fruits have more vitamins than imported fruits. We also found that Malaysia is rich with various kinds of food. It can be said that food are everywhere in Malaysia. As a matter of fact, we were very surprised to find this out and felt very happy about it. Our aim for this website was to highlight Malaysia as a multi-ethnic country where everyone cares for each other and that unity can be achieved through cuisines. Each of our team member choose a topic and wrote down what we already knew about it, what we wanted to learn and where we could find more information and shared our ideas with each other. We made a timeline and began researching, interviewing, writing and helping each other a lot! We visited five stars hotel like in Bangsar, Bukit Bintang or Ampang to get their menu and interviewed their five stars rated chefs. Besides, we did a lot of research from recipes book, food magazines and food history book and of course from the Internet as well. The group’s entire member searched for valuable information and pictures and went through a lot of hard work while at school and at home. Mr. Ganesan, Ms. Angie and Mr. Jeffry our coaches were extremely helpful throughout our research as well. After months of hard work, finally we are ready to share with the world outside, how we care for each other in our community and unite under one theme.
3. Our Computer and Internet Access
A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%
B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6
C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection
D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:1
E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):
Our Classroom runs on a networked environment where all the computers are linked together under a 10/100 base T line connection. An IBM server machine controls the entire lab and is located at a strategic place. We also came to know from our teacher Mr. Ganesan, that our school is actually connected to a Local Area Network ISDN.
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
Firstly, creating web pages was totally a new thing for us except for 1 or 2 computer wizards in our school, whom were preparing for their major examination that were just around the corner. We had no options available but to explore the world of web pages alone with our team members. However luckily we had our coach Mr. Ganesan and Mr. Jeffry, whom had knowledge on web page authoring. They provided us with guidelines on how to develop web pages and even suggested a book called “Creating Killer Websites”. They encouraged us to take up HTML and we used a book called “HTML for dummies”. Each of us specialized in different areas for example our leader Suzanne had some artistic value and so she created awesome background and pictures for our web page. Another problem was language; even though we used English as our International language for communication our team members lacked strong command of the language. We read a lot of English books and magazines to improve our command in the language. Although technologies and communication has fairly improved we were facing problems such as unstable electricity, so our computers would not work. Apart from that we had to plan our project time carefully so as to not fall behind the deadline. A major problem that we had to face was when our coach viewed our nearly completed project and gave comment that we went out of our aim of the topic. We had to redesign the project to get it back on track for submission with only a week time left. We worked round the clock with our coaches to complete it. We even had thoughts that we will not complete the project on time but our coaches gave us strength to go through the period with their motivation. At last we completed the project and it was up for uploading.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
We found that this project is useful in helping us to learn to create Web pages as well as work with many other people. This project was a learning experience for us in many ways. It was fun experience which taught us that working in a group can make life easier and through discussing one gets to learn about and appreciate more other points of view. It also gives us the opportunity to become more confident in interviewing people and to do something to help our school. Malaysia is an exotic country and this project has helped us to care for its cultural treasures while sharing it to the world.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
Our Cyberfair project supported our school’s value and vision in producing computer literate students contributing towards the country’s growth. It also brought our school one step forward to realize the Smart School concept, which is our prime minister’s vision and dream. The project offered opportunities for enrichment in various skills and talents. We have enriched our skills in language, Arts, Social Studies, and Multimedia Technology. In Language, we used writing strategies (drafting, revising and proofreading) and writing skills such as grammar, spelling and vocabulary. We also used study and research skills by identifying sources, comparing information across sources, formulating questions, interviewing, making and using a timeline, and using a variety of resource materials. In arts we used graphics editing skills in creating and manipulating pictures. We also carried out an analysis on the use colors in web site as well as exploring photography techniques. In Social Studies we used reference skills using the community as resource, selecting and using appropriate resources and using computer to run encyclopedia reference software and fact-finding skills. We also used constructive thinking skills by summarizing and synthesizing information acquired through researches. In addition to it, we also enriched our interpersonal skills by accepting and giving constructive feedback, interviewing and developing respect for others. In Multimedia Technology we explored Graphical User Interface technique to develop a website that is user friendly and caters use of graphic media. Thus allowing us to insert balanced set of multimedia effects into our project. We were also introduced to digital cameras, web critiquing, scanning skills and web designing. In this project, we also learnt the benefit of teamwork and other skills useful for our future. We really enjoyed it and would do it again if the opportunity were given.