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Personal Project 2011 janey

  1. 1. Faces of the world A multi-cultural book Personal Project 2011Janey Zhao (10C)Supervisor: Ms. LaingWord Count: 4000AOI Focus: Community & ServiceAOI Question: How can I assist in educating localChinese children about other cultures? 1
  2. 2. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Table of Contents: Page #Introduction & Statement of Goals 3Project Layout:Step 1-2 3Step 3-5 4Step 5-9 4-5Description of the Process:Inspiration 6Process 6-10Analysis of the Process 10-11Conclusion 12Bibliography 13-14Appendix 15-25 2
  3. 3. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Introduction and Statement of Goals: Growing up, I was unlike most of the Chinese children. I lived in the multi-culturalcountry of Canada; I went to a multi-cultural school and now I attend an International school. Ithas made me more of an open-minded person. My experiences, knowledge and thoughts arevastly different from those of my cousins who only grew up in China. In their way of teachingthey rarely know anything about other countries; their main focus was on China. They dependon stereotypes and rumors they heard to know about other country’s cultures. My personal project is to make a bilingual photo book about different cultures aroundthe world. I wanted to make this book because I want to educate young Chinese children moreabout different cultures. I learn facts and views of people of other countries effortlessly in myeveryday school life by communicating with my classmates. Other people do not have theprivilege to have these experiences. I want to help the younger children to learn about thediversity of the world through an easy media like a photo book. This can increase theirknowledge about their world. I have chosen the Area of Interaction, Community and Service. This is a very obvioussince I want to help the community around me to learn more about other cultures. I want tomake a book because even though in our schools each student has a laptop, regular Chinesestudents do not. A book is sometimes an easier and quicker way of finding information.Project Layout:Step 1: Research Firstly I researched about Chinese elementary schools in my vicinity through people inmy father’s company who use to work in the education field. I chose a school that I think wouldbe most suitable for me for time management. I also asked my father if I could use hispublishing company to get my book bound and published.Step 2: Plan I drafted a questionnaire (Appendix F) that I would ask the principal if they would like tocollaborate with me. I bought some of the school textbook to get an idea of what they arelearning. I’ll also hear and observe how they teach their classes so I will get an insight of howChinese education is. This guides me in making my book by helping me know how to format thetext in my book for them to best understand. I also prepared equipment to record my visit to 3
  4. 4. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)that school. Thinking that it would go smoothly I planned out my predicted timeline for events.(Appendix C)Step 3: Contacting/Interacting with school When I contacted a school, I first talked with the principal of the school on what myproject is and how it can benefit the students in that school. The principal agrees with my ideaand allowed me to listen to some classes. I visited the school every two weeks to observe andreport back the progress. I recorded these events and took notes on the method of teachingdigitally.Step 4: Brainstorm I brainstormed a list of important countries that I think Chinese children would beinterested in. I came up with a list of 50 countries. Then I looked at my list to cross out whichcountries I thought was surfeit. I want a compact book of diverse cultures, so some countrieseven though I have good sources for them; they’re too similar to another country making oneof them redundant. I crossed many of them out because too many countries might be timeconsuming to search. In the end, I ended up with a list of 20 countries. I also drafted a layout ofhow the pictures and information will go together. (Appendix J)Step 5: Gathering information I now start to research for information. I started with interviews first, I try to get asmuch people I can for the interview (Appendix A). I interviewed people in my school duringbreaks and lunches. I also interviewed many of my friends in other countries through means ofSkype and MSN. I know some people will not answer some of the questions because they might notknow the statistics. Some of the opinions for questions like values might differ from differentpeople so I cannot be sure of them. To gather more information, I had three websites to guide me. (Appendix B). I usedthree sources because I wanted to check see if the information given on one site is true.Therefore I read the information on the other site to see if the statistics given or theinformation is viable and correct. There are also some book sources that I used for some specific countries the world likethe World Book Encyclopedia Britannica, Lonely Planet travel guides and others. (Seebibliography) After gathering information, I rewrote the information given into little paragraphs. I had 4
  5. 5. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)to make the sentences simple since they are for young students who’s English are not fluent. Ialso wrote some Mandarin translation of those, but since my Chinese is not proficient enough Iasked people in my father’s company to help me proofread and translate what I wrote fromEnglish to Mandarin.Step 6: Gathering photographs Once I have collected all the information, I started to look for the photographs. I askedthe interviewees whether they have photographs or not and if they don’t, I’ll use pictures that Ihave taken or pictures I find online.Step 7: Compiling information I created the product on the program Pages. This is an easy word processing program,which also includes templates so I do not have to design every page. I put all my informationinto two pages for each country; one for photos, another for the English and Mandarininformation.Step 8: Editing & Proofreading After creating the pages, I have to make the title page, cover, index and table ofcontents. The index will include my works cited for all the photos and interviews andinformation. I will also proofread the whole book and also let people in my father’s company toproofread as well.Step 9: Publishing I will send the book in digital form to the publishing house and in a few days they willhave a hardcopy of my book ready to hand out to the children of the Chinese school. I willpresent each student in the selected grade and class one book. If this goes well, I will expandand also give other classes’ students one book per room. 5
  6. 6. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Description of the process:Inspiration What inspired me to do this project was the contrast in education between me and mycousins and peers. I am the only child in my whole extended family that went to a western styleteaching school. I can see the difference in education through talking to them. They just assumeall the western countries are the same. They’ve become very ignorant about other cultures andtheir differences. I’ve also seen this problem through my tutor who has to teach Chinese children before.Outside of school I’ve been tutored for history and Chinese using the standard Chinesetextbooks, which I’ve read, tells next to nothing about any other country. I believe that in orderto be a better more open-minded person, one must know an array of knowledge, of views andopinions of other people not just of what you’re taught or your country’s. To start to educate people, I think that if your methods are effective enough to educatepeople from a young age the information will be remembered more clearly. I thought to getstraight into the learning environment is the best way to educate the kids therefore I choseelementary school children. Also from my work, it can enhance their English abilities becausemy book is bilingual. Because of the importance of the English language in our society, I believe that it is vitalto get the students engaged in this language at a younger age, not just force them to memorizewords. In this method of learning, students can develop a liking towards the language and it willhelp them tremendously in learning the language. Also, I believe that the idea of othercountries’ cultures should be put forth into the students mind at a younger age. When they getolder, they will have a better understanding of the differences of people from other countriesso they don’t need to rely on stereotypes. This is what motivated me to make my book, which iseducational in both English and about the wider societies.Step 1: Research This step was quite easy and went very smoothly. There were one school around myschool but I chose one that was around my father’s company in the Hai Dian District. Since oneof my father’s employee’s use to work in the school, it was easy to get in contact with them. Itried to meet them in December but because it was so close to the holiday; students weretaking tests and did not want me to disturb them. This put me behind in the timeline. When they heard that I was not from the official school board they did not care aboutme but still allowed me to visit, thinking that it would be only once. This frustrated me becausealways in China, if you are not from the government people do not take you seriously and 6
  7. 7. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)sometimes will ignore you before even the explanation. Nevertheless I chose this schoolbecause I was running out of time and did not want to waste more time visiting other schools.This can be seen reflected in the Stage 2 and 3 Reflection Journal (Appendix I).Step 2: Plan My drafted questionnaire was not used as said in step 1; they did not actually take meseriously. I was about to ask the principal questions that I prepared but due to time constraintas she said she was busy, I could not and could only listen to the classes. The school waspreparing for another holiday, the Chinese New Year holiday so the school board was quitebusy. Subsequently, I cannot complete this step in my timeline. I did not tell them about myidea of giving them a book at this stage so they though I would be just observing some of theirclasses. My tutor told me that if I told them too soon, they might reject me because they mightthink that I was trying to sell them the books.Step 3: Contacting/Interacting with school While I was at the school, went to observe one grade five class and another grade threeclass in Chinese language just to get an idea of how the lessons are taught (Appendix D & E).While I was observing a grade three class, the teacher was very friendly towards me andintroduced me to the class. She was very friendly and gave me some of the same worksheets asthe students to really engage me in the class. In between classes, she also talked to me abouthow my school’s teachers teach and also about my study abroad. The children were also veryfriendly and chatted with me. I fascinated them. They have never seen any bilingual studentsbefore who lived in other countries. I also went to observe a subject that we do not have in our school called Morality &Society. The only reason I observed this class is because in the higher grades, they talk a littleabout other country according to my tutor. During this class, students memorized a very longrhyming poem about moral rules they needed to follow. Afterwards they watched videos onhow to be polite to others and the consequences. This class was different from what I wasexpecting. I thought that they would talk more about more how differently people wouldbehave in other countries but they did not even touch basics on that. The style of teaching wasvery traditional Chinese; as in “memorize” then “repeat”, ask no questions. The last of the classes I observed was the grade 3 English class. In this class’ lesson, sincethe students already have taken their tests, they were just reviewing. This class was taughtrather poor in my opinion, the teacher did not pay attention to the students very much. Thestudents were just given a vocabulary list and to memorize all of the words. When the studentdid not pronounce the words correctly, the teacher did not correct them. On their list, the 7
  8. 8. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)words were categorized into different topics such as clothing, jobs, etc. I borrowed a student’slist and immediately found spelling mistakes in some of the words. I told this to the teacher andshe announced it to the class but did not care if a student did not correct the mistake on theirpapers. I recorded these events and took notes on the method of teaching using my Macbook(Appendix G). Most the task in the classes were identical, it was rather mundane. They did notlet me in some classes because during that time because it was almost towards Chinese NewYear and students were taking tests. I decided to choose to first make the book aim towards fifth graders. I want to start offsmall first to see if I get a positive feedback or not then hopefully expand to more grade 5classes or other grades. I thought that the grade 3 students cannot comprehend the Englishthat it is in the book so therefore grade 5 would be a better choice. This can be seen reflectedin the Stage 4 Reflection Journal (Appendix I). I finally proposed my idea to the principal; sheagreed to my idea but again, did not give many thoughts into my idea because I was not in theschool board. 8
  9. 9. Step 4: Brainstorm It was easy to choose which country to write about. I had to relate how students wouldview that country, if they were interested in it. The list was rather quick to write out since I hadthe perspective of the Chinese students from the school visit.Step 5: Gathering information The interviews went as I expected, some of the interviewees did not answer all thequestions. I used the websites I had to fill in the missing information. I will not use all theinformation I asked to write the description of the countries. (Appendix H) Also, I predictedthat I was going to use book sources but because of time constraint, I used the online articles ofthose sources, which has the same amount of information. I used MSN and Skype because they gave me the instant answer of the other person andit records the history already in the chat logs. This sometimes I think is rather easier and moresecure way of collecting information because it keeps track of what is said for me. I can go backto it to take notes. I asked the interviewees whether they have photographs or not, most of them do nothave the type of photos I wanted or do not have photo at all. I decided to use the photos thatI’ve taken while on vacation in different countries and also creative common licensed photos onthe Internet. This can be seen reflected in the Stage 5 Reflection Journals (Appendix I).Step 6: Gathering photographs During the time completing this step, I did not expect to have all my weekends full. Istopped working for a long time during this step. The creative commons web search I alsoduring this process found wasn’t the best for my intent. Instead, I found another very helpfulwebsite called It contains a wide selection of user submitted photos that isalready organized into country. This makes it much easier for me to acquire the photos that Iwant in my book. 9
  10. 10. Step 7: Compiling information I was afraid my Chinese was not skilled enough to write the Mandarin description. I amplanning on now giving in what I have to people in my dad’s company and letting themtranslate for me. Most of the English description was easy to write, I did not use all theinformation that is given during the interview and my book did not cover each topic (e.g.language, religion) about every country. I just wrote what I thought the children would like toread. For example, do Chinese children really need to know all the religions of France?Perhaps not but they do want to know about the unique foods and fashion France is famousfor. But in some countries like Qatar, the lifestyle is based all around their religion of Islam.Step 8: Editing & Proofreading I actually started this step earlier than step 6 and 7. I thought that making a goodscaffolding structure of the book could be easier for me to work with. I finished structuring thebase of each page and table of contents on Pages. I did not proofread in this step but ratherchanged it to do so while writing out the information. I thought that would be quicker sinceafter writing I would have the information still in memory and it will be faster for my brain toprocess and identify mistakes.Step 9: Publishing This step is still in process since I handed it in the book to people in my father’s company tohelp me finally publish it. After it is published, I will send it off to the school and see howstudents respond to it, to see if I truly helped them.Analysis of Process: My goal was to assist to educate Chinese children about other cultures. After seeing thecondition of teaching in an average elementary school I was more inspired and motivated totake action. I think that I did not fully achieve this goal since I did not finish making my producton time. But I did help inspire them to learn about other cultures while visiting their school. I think though that I achieved most of what I trying to imply to the students in my AOI,Community and Service. During the time in the beginning I was there I talked to some of thestudents. The children were very happy to have me there. It was a new experience for them totalk to a bilingual student. The only bilingual people in their school were the English teachers,which mostly talked in Mandarin. I think in a way I have inspired the students of the school towork harder and to research more about other places. Going to the school was a service for me 10
  11. 11. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)and for the students and teachers. From me being there, they learn about the different people in the world, people whodon’t live in their own cultures. I think I have made them more open-minded about thedifferent people in the world, which was my main goal. For me, I learned more in depth about the Chinese culture and their education system,something that even most teachers in our school and foreigners living in China do not know. Ithought it was a very rewarding experience for me even though if some of the people therewere not as friendly. From only observing some classes I really got insight of how teaching isdifferent in the west and east. In this visit, rather me helping the community around me, thecommunity actually helped me. By listening to the classes I got a better understand on theflaws of this style and how I can help fix it. From the English and Morality and Society class Ireally was motivated into trying to help the student. Throughout the process, I thought what I excelled in was communicating. Icommunicated with the school, with the people in my father’s company and with the people Iinterviewed. I thought that I took full advantage of the many resources that I have. Icommunicated with in various ways of phone calls, Skype calls and in person. Communicatingwith the school and the people in my father’s company was the base of the beginning of myproject. Although at the start my communication with the school was very strong, it started todeteriorate because of the Chinese New Year holiday that took up most of the process time ofmy project, I could not be in contact with them. I thought this part was not fully my faultbecause as they were teachers, they were very busy and initially seems disinterested in myidea. What I feel accomplished about is that I still attempted to make contact in the start. Everything was going along smoothly until the second week of February. What has mademy project fail was my horrible time management at the end. What started it out great, butthen during the month that we were suppose to be working on our project, I suddenly had allmy weekends full of school events. The weekends are when I have the most time to work onmy book. I was so tired from these events that I barely did any work, therefore falling behind onmaking my project. I tried to do some work during the weekdays but normal school work haskept me from working. I wasn’t able to make to it my deadline so therefore could not get thebooks in on time although, I think the school do not mind it very much. 11
  12. 12. Conclusion “The best-laid schemes o mice an men gang aft agley” – To a Mouse by Robert Burns I think this famous quote best represents my project. In modern English, it translates tothe best laid schemes of mice and men go often askew meaning even the best of the wellplanned ideas often goes not as planned. This describes my project very well as it was going sowell in the beginning, I had so much potential but as time proceed, it all collapsed beneath me. I think that it is not entirely my own fault as many factors contributed to the failure ofthis project. The main endeavor was time. I had to start behind schedule because of theDecember holiday that was the first lag in my project. I tried very hard to get in contact withthem but the time of year brings many exams for the student, resulting effecting the wholeschool faculty. Looking back on it now, I think that I was grateful they has the time for me as Icould relate to what time stress they had. Time and time again always affected the flow of myprocess. Whether it is my own time management or the teachers and principal. Like all of my other plans, my reflection journal (Appendix I) in the beginning went verywell. I wrote sufficient amount of information in them weekly, although it was a few daysoverdue sometimes. Sometimes because of my lack of work, two of my reflections were thesame. I am quite disappointed in my reflections, I think that I could have achieved better. My AOI, Community and Service have helped me learn so much about the othercommunity around me. I now have an actual experience of how school life is in a Chineseschool. During this process from gathering information I also learned many new interestingfacts about other countries. I learn the differences and similarities of each community, thebenefits, and the disadvantages. My project was just an attempt to help correct one of theflaws of one community. I also came to a realization that my project could not even get started without the helpand service of the community of people around me. The people in my father’s company helpedme get started; my peers helped me gather information, the whole community contributed tomy project. Without them, my project would be nothing. If I could have redone my project, learning from my mistakes I think I can do a muchbetter job at this. I might change my approach to the question, instead of a book maybe anevent that provides direct contact between local and international students. Or staying with theoriginal idea I would defiantly manage my time more efficiently, I would follow my plan morestrictly and get in strong contact with the school more often. Although at the end, what mattersthe most is getting the right idea into the student’s minds, no matter what type of method ittakes. 12
  13. 13. Bibliography:"Canadian Culture: Basic Information About People in Canada." Vancouver English Centre - Learn ESLin Vancouver Canada. Web. 09 Mar. 2011. <>."Culture of Malaysia - History, People, Clothing, Traditions, Women, Beliefs, Food, Customs, Family."Countries and Their Cultures. Web. 20 Mar. 2011. <>."Ethiopia." Discovering New Horizons. Web. 10 Mar. 2011.<>."Japan - Location and Size, Population, Taxation, Agriculture, Farming, Forestry, Fisheries,Manufacturing." Encyclopedia of the Nations - Information about Countries of the World, UnitedNations, and World Leaders. Web. 19 Feb. 2011.<>."Japan." Discovering New Horizons. Web. 10 Mar. 2011.<>."United States of America - Location and Size, Population, Manufacturing and Construction, Energyand Mining, Information Technology." Encyclopedia of the Nations - Information about Countries ofthe World, United Nations, and World Leaders. Web. 1 Mar. 2011.<>.Cob, Ana. "Culture of Spain." Personal interview. 21 Mar. 2011.Davidse, Niels. "Culture of Netherlands." Personal interview. 23 Mar. 2011.Demidov, Anna. "Culture of Russia." Personal interview. 21 Feb. 2011.Dijksman, Stef. "Culture of Netherlands." Personal interview. 17 Mar. 2011.Hailekiros, Frena. "Culture of Ethiopia." Personal interview. 17 Mar. 2011.Hutin, Marie-Paule. "Culture of France." Personal interview. 12 Feb. 2011.Mercer, Gillian. "Culture of Australia." Personal interview. 18 Mar. 2011. 13
  14. 14. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Moya, Florencia. "Culture of Chile." Personal interview. 19 Mar. 2011.Pack, Seung Chae. "Culture of South Korea." Personal interview. 15 Mar. 2011.Pandey, Aastha. "Culture of India." Personal interview. 17 Mar. 2011.Park, Jee Yeon. "Culture of South Korea." Personal interview. 15 Mar. 2011.Redevi, Daniele. "Culture of Italy." Personal interview. 27 Mar. 2011.Refaie, Yousef. "Culture of Canada." Personal interview. 5 Mar. 2011.Singh, Maya "Culture of the India" Personal interview. 2 Mar. 2011.Sufian Yek, Ain. "Culture of Malaysia." Personal interview. 1 Mar. 2011.Sugita, Rina "Culture of Japan." Personal interview. 15 Mar. 2011.Tan, Yu Lynn. "Culture of Singapore." Personal interview. 15 Mar. 2011."To a Mouse." Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 8 Apr. 2011.<>.White, Richard."Culture of England." Personal interview. 10 Feb. 2011.Zhao, Janey. "Personal Project." Web log post. Wikispace. Web. 10 Mar. 2011.< Project>.van Steenhoven, Pippijn "Culture of Germany and Netherlands." Personal interview. 20 Mar. 2011.李, 云龙. 人教版小学品德与社会五年下册. 2007. Print.8 王, 林. 人教版小学品德与社会五年上册. 2007. Print. 14
  15. 15. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Appendices: A. Questions in interview • When is the national day of your country and what do people do on that day? • What are the main food people eat? • What is the ethnicity of your country? • What are some famous traditional dishes? • Are there any festivals traditionally specified to your own country? • What is the average family size? • What do people value the most? • What languages are spoken? • What do they like to do for fun (recreation)? • What kind of traditional clothing did they wear? • Is there anything unique that your country have or something that your country is notable for? • What do teenagers like to do in that country? • Is there anyone notable from your country? B. Websites for country’s information • • • C. Timeline of eventsMonth PLANNING STEPSSeptember • Think of ideas of a personal projectOctober • Submit questionnaire to start me thinking about my interests and abilities • Get a supervisor • Describe project idea to supervisor and get approval • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain advice • Sign contractNovember • Research to find information on education of Chinese students • Buy Chinese textbook materials to prepare to present to school teachers • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain advice 15
  16. 16. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)December • Design a layout of the book • Brainstorm questions to ask school teachers • Find and choose school to initiate idea • Interview teacher • Plan layout of each page according to teacher’s need • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain adviceJanuary • Find/make photos • Report progress to Chinese teacher + supervisor • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain adviceFebruary • Continue making photos • Contact publishing company (ask dad) • Report progress to Chinese teacher + supervisor • Compile photos into a book • Research information about each country • Present draft copy to Chinese teacher + supervisor • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain adviceMarch • Fix problems in book • Review over the book • Present finale copy to Chinese teacher + supervisor • Present copy to publishing company • Give copies to Chinese teacher • Take photos of children using and reading the books • Project finished • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain adviceApril • Draft personal statement • Meet with supervisor to share progress and gain advice • Personal Statement completed • Prepare for exhibition. 16
  17. 17. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C) D. The decoration in the hallway E. The children sit in rows and listen to the teacher sitting up front, the teacher goes in and out every class the students stay seated 17
  18. 18. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C) F. Questions to the principal/teacher • What kind of teaching material is currently used in this school? • Do you use any other material to help teach? • Does teachers make their own material to teach that is not from the textbook? • Do you think the way of teaching is the best for students or is there needs of improvement? • Do you teach English in the elementary grades? • Do you teach any other languages other than English? • Are there any non-Chinese students in the school? How many? What nationality? • Do they hang out with people of the same nationality or others? • Do you think the children know a lot about other countries? • Do you think they should learn more about other cultures? • Are there any activities to help the children learn? • Are there any ASAs in the school? • What cultures do you think you want the students to learn more about? • What aspects about that culture do you want them to learn? • When do you need the book? • How do you want the layout of the book? • Do you want an English translation of it? • What kind of pictures do you want to be in it? G. Notes taken during school visit• Size of BISS• Very plain hallways• Recycle bottle machine• Things like “Make our school a fun playground” posted on windows• Very little student work on walls• Cold, unwelcoming atmosphere but friendly students 18
  19. 19. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)• Use blackboard and chalk• Very empty, only one very small book shelf at the back corner of room• Clothes at the back (everyone has their own hooks)• Backpacks on their chair• Individual neat organized seats• One wall used for decoration,• Front of classroom has a platform and a desk for teachers• “Digital projector” old projector but like a giant camera• Students grouped into columns, teacher calls on student in columns• 40 min period• 10 min break in-between each, allowed to go out of classroom• Students called by full name• Head student- erases board, help teacher get materials into room like piano• Students very obedient, no personality• 36 students in the room• Teachers come into classroom• Everyone is sitting very straight• Some students looking and doing other things while student is performing• Students in one of the non-main subjects don’t pay attention, does other things like read book and play with erasers• Student Council member come in to inspect students- very mean and hits the students desk• Afterwards they report to the class which row has been good H. Sample note taken during interview & final descriptionIndia-BOLLYWOOD 19
  20. 20. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)←Religion: Hindu, Christian, MuslimMain Language: Hindi←National day: Aug 15th Independence day, holiday, parades, military, flag hoisting←Main food: rice, chicken, naan butter dishes are very heavy←Traditional dish: Butter Chicken←Festivals: diwali - celebrated all over india.. the festival of lights buy new clothes,exchange sweets with friends, fire crackers←Family size: 3 or 4←Recreation: Cricket←Clothing: Sari (silk dress)India is a country in the east of Asia. Hinduism originated here. The main language inIndia is Hindi but because it is so big, there are many other languages, similar to China.India has it’s own movie industry called Bollywood. Cricket and Bollywood are veryimportant to Indians. Young and old like to watch Bollywood movies and play cricket.The average family size is 4 people but extended families like to live together.One very fun festival is called Holi celebrated in the beginning of spring. During thisfestival in March of every year, people throw colored water at each other and cooksweets to eat. They think spring is very colourful so they throw colors at each otherwelcoming spring. I. Reflection JournalsStage 21. What have you learnt about your AOI related topic for your project?I have learnt that young Chinese students don’t have a good understanding of otherpeople other than themselves. I also learned that Chinese textbooks don’t really teachstudents about other cultures and only about other major country’s history.2. How did you learn these things?. Consider use of The Big Six, What questions didyou ask to guide your research and were they helpful? What sources were helpful,etc.?I learned these from my own experience. My father owns an educational company thatworks with the people who makes the texts books for most of the Chinese schools. Ihave access to those books, which I skimmed through. I also learnt from some of thebooks because they are used in my tutoring class. This was very helpful in understandwhat I needed to do/write in the book.3. What have you learn about the techniques (Steps, skills & materials) and process touse to make your project?It is going to be difficult for me to perform some of the steps since my Chinesecommunication skills aren’t very fluent. I think this will be my main obstacle in my 20
  21. 21. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)project. The skills and steps I need to learn are hard but if I try with effort I think I canpersevere because of my interest in this project that motivates me.4. How did you learn these things?. Consider use of The Big Six, What questions didyou ask to guide your research and were they helpful? What sources were helpful,etc.? I learnt these things by:I learned these things from my own self-experience and from my father’s company. Iused the questions I came up with in the Big Six to guide me.5. What problems have you encountered so far? Some Problems I encountered were:Which school that I am going to try to initiate this project to.6. How did you attempt to fix these and how successful were you? I tried to fix theproblem/s by:I try to fix this issue by deciding which school to target, but still haven’t. I think I willdiscuss this with my supervisor.7. Explain the sort of a learner you have been so far (see learner profile) I have been abecauseI think I have been a thinker because I thought a lot about my project and an open-minded person because I was open to suggestions of ideas from my teachers and peers.I was also knowledgeable and known a lot of information about my project even beforeI started it.Stage 31. TIMELINE CHALLENGE: Which of the steps / skills outlined in your time-line will be themost challenging for you?I think the hardest steps would be to find the people that are willing to bephotographed and also communicating with the Chinese teacher at first. I wouldprepare for this by first asking my friends if they would volunteer to be taken photos ofand also preparing some questions in Chinese to ask to the teacher.2. STRENGTHS: (What is good about your project?) What I think is going well with myproject is thatI think that it could become a very good idea and project that would help many people. Ithink my preparation is very well developed for the interview. I think most of the steps Ican solve easily because I am already in contact with many different people.3. WEAKNESSES: (What problems have been encountered so far?) Some problems Iencountered were:I think that I should speed up the process of my work. Most of the progress went 21
  22. 22. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)smoothly because I have connections but I still need to find a school to initiate this ideawith.4. IMPROVEMENTS: How did you attempt to fix these and how successful were you? Itried to fix the problem/s by:I tried to solve this problem by first asking my tutor if she is in contact with any localschool teachers since she was a Chinese teacher before. She doesn’t so I emailed theChinese teachers in my school asking the same question. I have yet to have received areply.5. LEARNER PROFILE:I am knowledgeable because I already know many steps of my project. I am open-minded because I am open to listen to opinions of my peers and supervisor.Stage 41. WHAT DID YOU DO?Since my last reflection I have contacted a school and surveyed their classes. Ivedecided to chose that school because it is close to my fathers company which I go toeveryday after school. I have interviewed the students and teachers in the school andthey allowed me to work with them for a book.2. STRENGTHSWhat I think is going well with my project so far is that I have contacted the school andkeep in touch with them through phones.I also planned out a layout of my book.3. WEAKNESSESSome problems I encountered were that I still dont know any publishing companies butI think this problem would be quickly solved by me asking my father for the contact.There was another problem of getting the school to recognize me and work with mebecause they usually only allow the school board people.4. IMPROVEMENTSI fixed this problem by giving them tea as gifts and talking about my idea of the book over dinner. 5. LEARNER PROFILE: With regards to the Learner Profile I have been knowledgeable, risk taker and inquirer 22
  23. 23. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)because I have a lot of knowledge about the Chinese school system, and I went tosurvey the school alone without assistance and inquirer because I asked many questionsat the school to the teachers.6. EVIDENCE: 23
  24. 24. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)Stage 5January 25th, 20111. WHAT DID YOU DO? (Give details on what you have done to create your product.Give reference to the steps outlined in your timeline. Explain any variations you mayhave made to your timeline).Since my last reflection I have made a list of countries that I want to write about in thebook and started interviewing people from different countries. I cant really meet withthe teachers this month because they are on Chinese new year holiday therefore I willjust make the book and give it to them. I changed my idea to compiling photos frommembers of my school instead of taking the photos myself.2. STRENGTHS (What is good about your project?)What I think is going well with my project so far is that I have the layout all organizedand ready on Pages. I also have a lot of sources of information since I am at aninternational school.3. WEAKNESSES (What problems have been encountered so far?)Some problems I encountered were I am not sure on what photos to find, it might behard for me to find for some countries because I have to use creative commons.4. IMPROVEMENTS: How did you attempt to fix these and how successful were you? Itried to fix the problem/s by:Taking photos myself from my vacation or asking friends for their photos.5. LEARNER PROFILE: (Explain the sort of a learner you have been so far -see learnerprofile) With regards to the Learner Profile I have been a ____because I have ….Thinker because I have been planning my book and open-minded because I interviewand hear opinions of others.6. EVIDENCE: Attach drafts of your researchFranceReligion: Christian-Catholic, Protestant, Muslims, JudaismMain Language: FrenchNational day: July 14th,fireworks and danceMain food: Bread, cheese, cake, croissantTraditional dish:Strong family values, three courses, cheese and salads, dinner is very importantFestivals: Easter, ChristmasFamily size: 2 or 3 children 2.3/womanRecreation: Meeting with friends, football, travel, family timeClothing: casual, chic, modern 24
  25. 25. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C)February 7th, 20111. WHAT DID YOU DO? (Give details on what you have done to create your product.Give reference to the steps outlined in your timeline. Explain any variations you mayhave made to your timeline). Since my last reflection I have continued on working onmy book. I am still gathering information and not yet started working on the photos.2. STRENGTHS (What is good about your project?) What I think is going well with myproject so far is that I have many sources to cite, I use a broad range for example likeinterviews, books, online sources and myself.3. WEAKNESSES (What problems have been encountered so far?) Some problems Iencountered were: that I didnt work fast enough.4. IMPROVEMENTS: How did you attempt to fix these and how successful were you? Itried to fix the problem/s by working faster.5. LEARNER PROFILE: (Explain the sort of a learner you have been so far -see learnerprofile) With regards to the Learner Profile I have been a communicator by talking tomany different people and an inquirer by asking questions.6. EVIDENCE: Attach drafts of your researchNepalReligion: Hinduism, Buddhism, Muslim, Kirat, ChristianMain Language: NepaliNational day:Main food: Rice, vegetableTraditional dish: Kheer (sweet milk porridge)Festivals: Dashain (family gatherings), Nepalese New year, Tihar (light festival), Bhai Tika(Sibling festival)Family size: 4 or 5 childrenRecreation: cooking, sewing, tv, cricketClothing: Gunio Cholo (crop top and wrap dress), Patasi (crop top and wrap dress andshawl), Boto (silk dress), Dowra Suruwal (tunic, pants) Hats are important for men,women heavy jewelry 25
  26. 26. Personal Statement Janey Zhao (10C) J. Layout draft 26