This was the case for 17 students from the Dignity for Children Foundation (DFC) when they were invited to IMU on 24 and 25 January 2017. As part of the course requirements for Semester 3 students of the Foundation in Science programme for Cross Boundary Studies, the FS116 students decided to give the DFC students, aged 16-17, an experience of a lifetime, bringing their textbooks to life. This is made possible through hands-on Chemistry and Biology experiments that are adapted from DFC students’ textbooks, carrying them out in the multidisciplinary labs at IMU. Through this project, FIS students learnt the basic procedures of writing lab manuals, creating worksheets to reinforce DFC students’ understanding, carrying out trial runs of the experiments they have written. Furthermore, what better way is there to hone leadership skills if not through guiding others? FiS students facilitated and guided the participants during the practical sessions, giving them a peer tutoring experience.
|“For me, I find that this project increases our personal and social responsibilities. It helps is to increase our planning, critical thinking and reasoning skills, as well as creativity. This project also strengthen our communication skills, which is needed for both interpersonal and presentation needs. Moreover, through this project, I have learnt how to manage my time, between this assignment and my classes. Last but not least, this project this project developed my ability to work as a team with my peers.”, said Abu Nowajish Siddique, FS116 student from Bangladesh.|
The FIS students obtained valuable opportunities to reinforce their existing skills, such as collaborative work, project management skills and problem-solving competences. It also provided a scaffold for the FIS students to learn how to work safely in a lab and to apply critical thinking when new situations emerge. When asked of her experience in carrying out this project, Racheal Ahn, FS116 said, “Firstly, this project helped me a lot in building my confidence. Next, this project also taught me a lot about teamwork. Besides that, I also learned about time management. Lastly, this project taught us on how to be a responsible person by carrying out the task that is assigned by the group leader.” Being a good leader may not necessary be the one to lead, a good leader should also learnt to be led. And that’s what the FS116 students learnt.
|Kai Wen, FS116, also gave comments from her team mates, “Cross Boundaries Studies enabled us to have deeper interaction with each other as we did not have experience working with some of the team members. Throughout the entire activity, my team has learnt that team work is very important to ensure the entire activity run smoothly. Next, my team has learned brainstorm process, regardless if the idea was bad or good as any judgments are set aside because all ideas are welcomed. Furthermore, we have learned the skills of being able to look at things in different angles and perspectives in order to have a better plan. Last but not least, we are able to have an experience of teaching and guiding O-Level students to carry out an experiment and having discussion with the participants from DFC.”|