CyberFair Project ID: 4488

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: BioTech
Category: 4. Local Specialties

School: St. Joseph's Institution
    Singapore, Singapore, Singapore

4 students, ages 14-15 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 17, 2006. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2006

Classes and Teachers: Mr. Raymond Wong

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Team

The teacher-in-charge Mr. Raymond, told us about this Doors to Diplomacy competition in late January in the year 2006 only. We being all Secondary 3 students decided to take on this competition as a challenge to our IT skills, which we felt were waning. So, we were led by our team leader, Kyle, who made the decision to do Biotechnology, under Science and Technology, because we had felt that teenagers around the world who are around our age, need to be educated about this sector in the Science and Engineering industry, which is at present emerging as one of the most talked about industries in the world. Kyle, who was the most proficient in the design section, made the basic layout of the website, and the coding with the help of Jason, who had assisted him in fine tuning it. Edwin and Thung Young, on the other hand took on the laborious and slow task of searching for information from various websites to be summarized and included in ours. Along the way, Mr. Raymond Wong, gave us guidance and direction to help us in our website production. After all the information was collected, and the design layout finished, we added on the information to the website layout, including some imagery and animation, to give it the precise and edgy look. We then tested the website on various computers and operating systems, and it worked well with all. The project provided us with some cranial calisthenics, which put our creativity and intelligence to the challenge.

2. Summary of Our Project

Our web project is about the Biotechnology sector in Science which plays a vital role in today's modern and evolutionizing world. Day by day, a new and ground breaking discovery is found out, and such can bring benefits to the people and the environment. Biotechnology is basically, the use of microorganisms for industrial and manufacturing purposes. As such we decided to shed light on 3 most important and well-known applications of biotechnology as seen in, stem cell research, genetically modified crops, and Cloning. We also included their role in the international platform, and locally, its role in Singapore, an emerging nation that encourages the advancement of biotechnology. In stem cell research, scientists conducted tests to find out the use of stem cells in producing and growing new cells, tissues and organs from them. In the widely controversial cloning, we will foray into its ethical issues and how it is carried out. Furthermore, the advantages or maybe harmful factors of agricultural genetics have been given mention as genetically modified crops.

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:more than 6

E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):

Our computers are of different brands but are approved by Singapore's Ministry of Education, it has a Windows XP Professional operating system, and contains many software such as Adobe Photoshop, Macromedia Dreamweaver and Macromedia Flash and many others

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

We had to overcome a myriad of obstacles during our project. First, we had only a very short time frame to finish our project before the March 17 deadline. We had barely more than 3 months to produce results, and managed to use the time fully. During this time also, we had to sit for some term assessment tests for all our subjects, during this period, we could not have much progress on the production of the website, because we had to study to try our hardest to ace the test. We did well in the tests and were more encouraged to complete our project. Another obstacle was that the imagery we wanted to use was all copyrighted or had reserved rights, such we went on an arduous task searching for images that were royalty-free so it could be added into our website.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

Our participation in this project which promotes Biotechnology has deep meaning towards us, as we feel it an important emerging sector in the Science and Engineering industry. We were truly satisfied to educate teenagers about its importance and to join this industry, and to make it grow.

6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?

Our project addressed general and international content standards for people of all ages. This project fitted into our curriculum guidelines because we learn certain topics of biotechnology, such as genetics which gives us more reason for having done this project. We learnt how to brainstorm for ideas, search for relevant information, evaluation of gathered information and implementation of the project. We practiced team support, where we helped one another in each area of weakness if there was any, so as they would learn from their mistake, and so that our bonds in the team and as such the team would be enhanced. We better understood specific ideas by reading up more about it or finding information that was simpler, which were easily comprehensible. Our class is required to attain more information, what is taught out of the syllabus. Doing so, we ventured into deeper understanding of these concepts to make us more knowledgeable in this subject matter. We made a discovery that the educational system is a step in our path to become more intelligent and erudite people or adults in the future that are well informed. It provides us students with the fundamental grounding that will become essential later on as we progress in life. I do agree that with the use of the internet teaching has become a lot more effective and accurate. A myriad of information can be adapted from the internet with the click of a finger; the traditional method allows the person to follow information from one specific textbook, while on the internet there is a wide range to choose from, to provide a conducive learning experience

Project Elements

1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?

We used tools such as computers, our personal Science textbook, and our Science notes. We greatly used the internet, searching medical websites, or non-profit ones, to adapt the contained information. From our own personal notes, and information we gave some basic grounding to most of the information. It came in handy to clarify and add on last touches. These tools helped us to provide accurate, precise and concise information for the readers, to view on our website. We located our tools in our school library, computer labs and even our own school bags. Our most valuable tools were the internet and the encyclopedia, because they contained the most of the needed information, in which we took reference from. Technologies such as the computer, camera and mobile phones were most important. We used the computer to piece together this whole project, the camera to take some pictures and most definitely the mobile phones for communication to aid in the project going on smoothly.

2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.

Our project allowed us to act as ambassadors because it gave us an opportunity to raise awareness about Biotechnology, and its importance in promoting inter-continental ties and forge global bonds with our neighbouring countries. This is a form of diplomatic relations. We are ambassadors representing the youth of Singapore sharing our opinion n the subject of Biotechnology to both youth and adults in the world. We have provided information n a very attractive package that will interest all. Potential visitors to our website have been some classmates of ours, whom are curious to find out more about Biotechnology. We have actually asked the Chairman of the Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR), on behalf of the Head prefect of our school about the presence of Biotechnology in Singapore, and how it seems to be emerging. The Chairman, Mr. Philip Yeo, who was once our school alumni. We have included some of that interview as content. We will tell him about this project of ours. Some parents of our students who have viewed our project expressed pride that we bothered to take the initiative to inform our friends, about Biotechnology, so that they can join that sector, after graduation. They told us personally, when they met us.

3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?

We think our project has made a difference because it has lured people to develop an interest in Biotechnology, a new sector in the Science and Technology Industry. As Singapore is aiming to become a biotechnological hub, and increase in interest about this sector, among the youth in Singapore, and around the world can help in the development of Singapore's Biotechnology sector. Through our web pages people in society has learned of the importance of biotechnology to make lives better and easier, which they have not done so, before. Other people around the world have learnt that Singapore is a willing player in the Biotechnological sector, in which huge grants are given out to help its growth here in Singapore. These foreigners from around the world can try their hands at working in Singapore, to continue biotechnological research. We have received positive feedback about our website. People say it is informative, educational, precise, and simple to comprehend, which is what other sites are not famous for. Our website has introduced the world of biotechnology to them, which can help them in their every day lives, and to find cures, and solutions to alleviate their medical woes.

4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?

We are heavily indebted to Mr. Raymond Wong, he was the one who inspired us to do this project, and helped us out a lot along the way, giving us advice, and new techniques to make our website better. We thank him first of all, Mr. Philip Yeo, who helped in the interview, and some friends and their parents who have viewed our website. We thank our friends in Secondary 1 and Secondary 2 which also aided in checking the documents for us to scan for any misinformation or errors

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

We made an interesting discovery that making a Flash website is so much harder than it seems. Putting together the right coding to make it all seem worth, takes a lot of time, and effort. We also learned that we worked well together under stress and pressure of the nearing deadline, which turned out to be sooner than expected. We also learned a lot more about Biotechnology ourselves; our minds were saturated with knowledge about Biotechnology, more than what we had before taking on the project. We learnt about its usefulness and the benefits it brings about, We also observed that there were little websites, dedicated to teaching the youth about Biotechnology, or other sciences.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 4488)

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