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IGCSE Global Perspectives Group Project Natasha Lama

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Topics: Nutrition, Eating
GLOBAL
PERSPECTIVES

GROUP
PROJECT
Candidate Name: Natasha Lama
Candidate No: 1008
Centre No: MY 238
School: Cempaka International Ladies College
IGSCE Exam Submission: May/June 2014 Examinations
Subject: Global Perspectives
Coursework: Group Project
Word Count - Project Paper : 1377 words
Word Count - Individual Evaluation: 1655 words
Date of Submission: 29 March 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS
No

Title

1

Project Proposal Form

2

Group Project Paper

(i) Background Information
(ii) Information Gathering
(iii) Key Findings
3

Project Outcome

4

Appendix

5

Individual Evaluation

(i) Evaluation of project plan and process
(ii) Evaluation of Project Outcome
(iii) Evaluation of My Contribution
(iv) What I have learnt from cross-cultural Collaboration

Page Number

CEMPAKA INTERNATIONAL LADIES’ COLLEGE
IGCSE Global Perspective
Project Proposal Form
Area Of Study:

Our Project Focus:

The affects of an adolescent’s diet in conjunction to their academic performance. Health and Disease

Our Project Aims:

To study the impact a bad diet brings onto the academic performance of a student, consequently finding out its causes and how it is influenced.
Group Members

Role

Sabrina Saharudin

Group Leader, Public Relations,
Researcher

Amanda Ong

Public Relations, Secretary,
Researcher

Natasha Lama

Researcher, Photographer

Our Reason for Choosing this Particular Topic in the Area of Study:
Our choice for choosing this particular topic is because as students, the vast change in an adolescent’s diet of this generation due to the influence of manufacturers and many other external factors, concerns us as it affects one’s academic performance, whether it be minor or major. And as young members of society, we understand the importance of education to develop and strengthen not only one’s mentality, but also their nation
Key Research Questions:

a. In terms of health and nutriment, are the students in our community aware of the influence it has on their academic development? b. What are the causes of a bad diet and its effects, academically?
c. What are the most important nutrients that promote brain activity?
d. How can we do our part and contribute towards creating a healthier learning environment?
Our Specific Outcomes for the Project
Group Element

Individual Element

Project Proposal Form
- Sending a proposal to our Head girl for permission to lead a Food
Improvement Committee (FIC) in our school. Start involving students and teachers in the committee. Each group member is to produce 1 document divided into
3 sections in which the group member: 1. Evaluate the group outcome of the Project (i.e. the plan of activities) - Start carrying out discussions
2. Evaluates her individual with the students and chefs on contribution to the Project (i.e. opinions about the diet of what she did well at during group students in the school and ways work and/or what she could have on improving it. Start holding done better at and/or what she activities and carrying out found difficult about working as a presentations to promote healthy group. eating and to raise awareness on 3. Explain what she thinks they the importance of a healthy diet. have learned from cross-cultural collaboration and whether what has been learned has changed her opinions in any way.
Project Activities, Work Distribution and Timeframe

What

Who

All members

How Long

1

Start discussions on possible topics and area of study 2 lessons

2

Start electing the position of All members members and delegating tasks respectively

1 lesson

3

Start deciding on project aims and activities; perform further research and analysis on the area of study All members

4 lessons

4

Checkpoint. Discuss with our supervisor Dr Martin to reevaluate our group’s area of study and aims. Reflect on what has been achieved and plan for the next phase of the project.

All members

1 lesson

5

Open and share a Google document with all members

Amanda Ong

1 lesson

6

Carry out research on related topics and gather details for the project paper

Amanda Ong

2 lessons

7

Discuss the cross-cultural aims and contact family members and friends abroad. Carry out interviews with respective individuals.

Sabrina
Saharudin and and Natasha
Lama

3 lessons

8

Discuss our cross cultural experience and area of study and compile results from interviews.

Sabrina
Saharudin and
Natasha Lama

1 lesson

9

Checkpoint. Review project progress and make necessary changes to project aims based on information accumulated.

All members

2 lessons

10

Discuss regarding school
All members activities pertaining our area of study.

1 lesson

11

Brainstorm ideas on how to spread awareness of our topic. Decided to do so through posters and by carrying out an educational presentation. 1 lesson

12

Start designing posters from All members the gathered information.

2 lessons

13

Contact Head girl and
Sabrina
request for our group to
Saharudin
lead the school’s Food
Improvement Committee.
Write a formal proposal regarding our request to officiate the commencement of the project.

2 lessons

14

Checkpoint. Discuss with all All members group members on what has been achieved and plan for the next phase.

1 lesson

All members

15

Decide on aims for the
Sabrina
Food Improvement
Saharudin
Committee. Write the committee’s first food report and have it sent to our principal Dato’ Freida for evaluation. 1 lesson

16

Get a few students involved All members in the committee to help spread awareness. Discuss matters with them on our aims for the project and what we plan to carry out.

1 lesson

17

Discuss with Dato Freida regarding the committee’s aims and other relatable matters in school. Draft out a new menu.

Sabrina
Saharudin

1 lesson

18

Contact our school’s Food and Nutrition teacher for advice on drafting a menu.
Have a discussion about the health issue in school and possible ways to improve it.

Sabrina
Saharudin

1 lesson

19

Start on the project paper.
All members
Delegate each member with separate sections; carry out discussions on

20

Discuss what can be improved in the project.

All members

2 lessons

21

Checkpoint. Discuss on achievements and reevaluate each other’s progress. Plan for next phase. All members

1 lesson

22

Start planning for the group’s presentation on the area of study. Carry out the research respectively.

Sabrina Rokiah
Saharudin

2 lessons

23

Plan and discuss with the
Sabrina Rokiah school’s Vice Principal to
Saharudin
conduct a meeting with the
Food Director of our school.

1 lesson

24

Conduct a meeting with
Encik Zahir, the school’s
Food Director regarding relevant issues found in school. All members

2 lessons

25

Analyse and discuss information gathered and begin making plans for the presentation to resolve issues found.

All members

1 lesson

26

Checkpoint. Discuss what has achieved thus far and beginning concluding on research findings and carrying out plans made.

All members

1 lesson

27

Carry out group presentation during Ladies’
Evening held at school.

All members

1 lesson

28

Gather findings and observations made during the presentation and finalise research paper.

All members

2 lessons

Group Project Paper
Project Focus: One’s diet and its conjunction to their academic performance.
Project Aims: To study the impact a diet brings onto the academic performance of a student, consequently finding out any causes and influences that may come along with it.
As a result of our investigations for our Global Perspectives Group Project, our Project Group is submitting the following report. This report will be an account of our initial discussion, key findings and project outcome.
Background Information
Initial Discussion
The initial discussion of healthy eating started by our concerns as teenagers facing academic trials on a daily basis and how our diet affects us and the community of students that surround. Moreover, coming from a boarding school, we lack the knowledge on the basis of a healthy diet and an adult figure to guide in the proper direction as we are separated from our parental figures of guidance for most of the time. After conducting some observations, we find that due to the limited choice of food as well as the advantage of freedom in choice of meals which they can misuse. This results in the often skipping of meals as they escape the constrictions of guidelines which are usually stressed by their parents at home.
Also, all three group members descend from diverse racial backgrounds and have been brought up different thus allowing for a wide spectrum of perspectives of our eating habits and lifestyle choices that have been instilled in us since we were children. Through our observation on our area of study, it has been proven that mere eating habits and choices in food can affect our mentality and physical ability in many ways. However, as students, our main concern is how it affects our academic performance.
Our group is more interested in how something as trivial and simple as food would be able to affect our proficiency to obtain knowledge and how to efficiently make use of it. As students, we understand the important of cultivating quality academics to aid us in sustaining a successful as education forms a staircase to in creating an independent and creative individual that can help develop and become the leaders of their nation. Furthermore, being apart of a national and global family, spreading the awareness of this topic will benefit the entirety of our generation and the many other that come after.

Information Gathering
Studying in an all girls’ international boarding school, Cempaka International Ladies College
(CILC), our tight-knit community encompasses of pupils from different cultures and backgrounds that opens our eyes to distinct diverse lifestyles we have yet to decipher. Through this, a pivotal role of comfort is created by food to ensure the students’ stay is pleasant. By conducting a number of Skype video-call sessions with students from America, Australia and
England, where they provided input on aspects of our group projects after answering a series of question based on their various cultural viewpoints. With this information, we were able to come up with the following outcome on our project:
Key findings
1. We have found that in our school’s community, despite the different cultural, racial and religious backgrounds that each individual held, nearly everyone had the same perception: that education carries out a great importance in one’s life and future. And so with this knowledge, they accepted the momentousness of a healthy lifestyle in able to obtain this.
2. Neurons, composed of 100 billion brain cells, drive our ability to think, learn, feel and also our states of being. Healthy fats, protein, complex carbohydrates, micronutrients - vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients - and water are the essential needs of neurons. These nutrients are also used to drive the learning functions of neurons. The raw material for building and pruning of the connections in the neurons comes from the food we eat.
3. Neurons communicate using a process called neurotransmission when they connect. As child thinks, speaks, moves or feels, electrical impulses triggers the release of messenger chemicals, called neurotransmitters (NTs), which travel across the synapse, transmitting information to the next cell. This cell-to-cell communication forms the basis of learning. NTs help connect verbal, emotional, visual and kinesthetic memories. Moreover, they connect prior learning to new learning. Other than the more technical side of things, NTs also correlate with mood and behavior as well as regulates the learning states and levels of alertness. There are hundreds of these NTs, which are manufactured in the brain - all coming from the food we eat.
4. Within the body of the neuron, corresponding to the palm of the hand in our analogy, is where the cell manufactures NTs, using protein, vitamins and minerals. Energy is generated from food, and regulates growth and change of cells. Neurons are prone to damage from environmental toxins that make their way into our systems, as well as toxic by-products formed in the body. The first line of defense? Antioxidants from food. Diets low in antioxidants have consistently been shown to cause and contribute to illness and disease. The brain, due to its high fat content, is especially vulnerable to damage and requires high levels of antioxidants for protection.

5. Liaising with Ms. Chong, a teacher at Cempaka International Ladies’ College under the
Science and Food & Nutrition department, we have been fortunate enough to receive her advice regarding our study. As the teacher in charge for the Food Improvement Committee
(FIC) in our school, she had discussed with an individual member from our group on her thoughts and opinions on our area of study. With the information acquired from the discussion, we were able to gather a list of nutritional foods that we are able to serve the students in the school. From the list, a menu was then created where it included the agreed foods to serve during mealtimes at our boarding school.
6. Our group then planned and consented to further improve and motivate the students to carry out a healthy lifestyle. We carried out a friendly presentation during one of the ‘Ladies’
Evening’ held at our boarding school, to share our findings through our observations on their lifestyles and habits and research that we have carried out.
7. One of our group members along with a member of the Food Improvement Committee attended a meeting with the CILC’s Food Director to discuss matters regarding the standard of food in our school and ways to improve it. Actions and plans were then taken to ensure that the improvement will be made by the following academic year.
Project Outcome
After agreeing to carry focus on health and academics for our group project, the members of our group carried out a number of discussions on what exactly we would want to do for our assignment. Keeping the importance of diet towards academics our focal point, we each carried out individual research on what were the factors that could contribute to better one’s academic performance. We considered how it would vary for each individual student, depending on their age, lifestyle and health. Moreover, after observing how an increased number of students of our school were becoming more health conscious and were also wanting a change in their diet in school, our group seized this opportunity to interrelate our study with the said situation.
Furthermore, after a discussion with the Head girl of our boarding school, we had finally agreed on leading the Food Improvement Committee of our school and each member of our group approved of the idea to carry out our projects and researches in conjunction with this committee.
One of our first projects under the said committee was to write a report on the quality of the food served. This was done by communicating with the students and members of the CILC community and through our own observations. We would randomly select students and ask them a series of questions that all fall under the umbrella of the area of our study. After, we would compile the results and base the report on our findings. From there, our group, together with the
Food and Nutrition teacher of our school Ms Chong, would plan an improved menu every few weeks, focusing on overcoming the problems that were most prevalent. The reports were sent to our principal Dato’ Freida, where she would then share her opinions and advice after.

INDIVIDUAL EVALUATION
By Natasha Lama
Evaluation of the project plan and process
‘Health and Disease’ focusing on the effectiveness of a diet on a person’s lifestyle was the area of study easily identified and decided on after an unanimous vote. To kick start our project, we held a reflective discussion in which we acknowledged the importance of food in our daily life as a students particularly. Preferred above all other topics, because we were able to voice out our opinions freely and passionately; the question of how our specific diets or food regimes have played a critical part in maintaining alert and active during the day was finally set as the focal point of our study. Soon we started to formulate plans and setting our aims and goals for the project. We worked diligently into encouraging students in our community into eating regular and proportionate meals in hopes that it would bring a positive impact onto their lives.
By creating a set timeline was undoubtedly one of the best decisions which allowed for us to be as efficient as we could. This skeleton plan devised made it easier for us to keep tracking if we ever did waver off. During the course of this project, there were times when we found we had strayed from the original focus of the topic but with the guidance of our supervisor, all flaws that were identified were at once rectified. As the group leader, Sabrina created a Google Document where we could update each other on what was going on. It also became in easy mean of communication when we were at home and made sure we were all on the same page; saving us a lot of time. By spending a lot of time together, we were able to fish our each others’ weaknesses and strengths and delegate duties accordingly. As Sabrina and I were better in English we did some of the editorial work.
As Photographer of the group, I played my part by making sure to document all the necessary events in order for us to compile and attach it into the appendix; this is allowed us to keep track of any event conducted within the time frame of our project. One of the greatest problems we faced was that communication became an obstacle during to the sometimes slow or lost internet connection. This problem served as a major set back as much of the work was saved onto the Google Document thus not allowing for us to update each other as quickly and delaying our work process. After that, I learnt to always keep an updated version of the google doc as a soft copy in my laptop. Although we encountered this hitch, we took the time when there no internet connection to focus on other aspects of our projects such as designing posters, planning for future activities and conducting presentations.
Overall, though we were challenged with a number of complications, we managed to overcome them and work in a systematic and orderly manner. I believe we succeeded in performing our

tasks well and cooperatively. Through this, I learnt the importance of time management and working as a team while offering and contributing equality in order for the workload to be shared equally; this created a sense of unity and an endless bond of teamwork between my group mates and I.
Evaluation of Project Outcome
In order to achieve the outcome of this project, I feel that we had to first start with a selfevaluation. For us to understand why students chose a certain lifestyle, we had to put ourselves in their shoes in order to emphatise and figure out the root of their personal selections in the way they lead their diets and the factors that affect their mindset towards eating healthy while leading a balanced lifestyle. After during the necessary research, we found that the food we consume does affect us greatly in how we function daily physically and mentally. Thus to promote the notion of maintaining a nutritious food intake, we created and designed posters in order to raise awareness around our school campus. After a week of putting them up, we received a general positive feedback amongst the students that it motivated them to start healthy eating habits.
However, one slight problem they experienced was remaining disciplined towards this new change and continuing to maintain it. Although, we were extremely happy with the response we received from the students and decided to conduct a presented in order to further educate them on this topic.
Although, we originally planned to conduct a presentation in front of both the faculty of the school and the students, that plan had to be rectified as formal assembly was cancelled.
Hence, we decided to hold the presentation during Ladies’ Evening with just the students. This I personally felt had a greater impact on the community as we were able to interact with the students in a more intimate manner due to the informal setting. The presentation went much better than expected as the students were very interactive and our worries of the presentation being boring although informative were no longer there. By reaching out the younger age group, we were able to figure out that the mentality of the students are the main control panel of their mindset towards how much they eat. Due to social media pressures, I observed that many of the younger girls have an image of becoming skinny as what they see as beautiful thus eating less or an extreme cases starving themselves in hopes of shrinking into a size 0. We also observed that students who exercise regularly are more content with their body image and tend to not face as many eating problems as they are usually more hungry as their body needs to replenish the lost energy. This played a crucial part in our project as this proved that the conduct of lifestyle does affect the person’s need for food.

Evaluation of My Contribution
In my opinion the tasks amongst our group were delegated in a very orderly manner.
Throughout the course of this project, I believe we were able to pin point each others’ strengths and weaknesses and used it to our advantage in order to complete work efficiently. For example,
I contributed to the editing and rephrasing of the topic. I also designed a couple of posters with
Sabrina Saharudin who aided in gathering information. Sabrina and Amanda also were delegated to be in charge of organizing activities, by liaising with the people in charge as they were much better at communications. I believe my most significant contribution was talking to the students after our presentation was conducted as they had many questions how their diet can be improved.
It was observed that due to the clouded image in their heads of the social norm of looking
“skinny” these girls are not proud of their bodies and embracing the true beauties that they are
Hence, I had personal conversations with some of these students in order to better their lifestyle and help them in making the right choices instead of eating less and suppressing themselves in indulging. Not only did these discussions with the students aid in gathering information for our study, it also strengthened our bonds at a more sisterly and personal level. Dieting by cutting down in certain food groups should not be done at this age as they need all nutrients to grow.
Also, during certain times as I would be too caught up in completing my tasks that I would forget to update my fellow group members thus causing a few mishaps. I should have replied their emails verbally if I was unable to, due to internet restrictions; thus potentially improving our communication skills as a team. I believe that if it weren’t for these slight gaps in communication, we would have been able to progress much more greatly.
What I’ve learned from cross-cultural collaboration.
All the three of us originate from diverse backgrounds and had a lot of insight to share and contribute into our brain storming sessions. I contributed towards the project by interviewing one of my friends, Ethan, who had been residing in the United Kingdom due to college. I feel that it was beneficial in obtaining views from individuals around the globe from different age groups widened our perspectives on this topic. This is due to the different lifestyles that they diligently led compared to ours. As an example, Ethan barely had time for breakfast as he was constantly rushing for classes and or trying to complete assignments that he would neglect his health and skipped many meals. Through this, I understood that university carries a heavier workload compared to secondary or primary school. Ethan did say that he wished that he had time to carry out a balanced lifestyle and eat better as he constantly feels drained and relies on the weekend to regain his energy when he should really feel awake and healthy throughout the week. Therefore, I suggest to start maintaining balanced lifestyle from the early years and have

breakfast most importantly because it the most key meal of the day as it starts us up for the day.
Without breakfast, we would lack a jump start and start the day off on a tired and constantly distracted due to our grumbling stomaches.
All the people we contacted for our cross-cultural collaboration agreed that eating habits do play a big part in staying healthy during school which subsequently affects their academic performance. This opened our eyes to the various lifestyles led by others in different countries due to their upbringing. Despite our different cultural views on this topic from within our group to the teachers and students we interviewed from overseas, we were effortless able to understand each other and respect everyone’s opinions. This experience taught me to be open-minded and accepting of other peoples’ views.

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