KIS Spotlight: Personal Project

Personal Project helps to guide students to pursue their personal interest and take a further step onto turning their dreams into reality. This project allows students to express themselves through their final product. Luckily, we had the chance to interview one of the students from grade 10, about her topic on personal project and how she feels about this task.

What is your topic? Your global context?

  • My personal project is about Southern US cuisines and my chosen global context is orientation in space and time exploring the history of southern US dishes.

Why did you choose this topic? Any inspirations?

  • I chose this topic because my family has spent almost half of their lives living in Georgia, USA and I have been there for the past several summers in which I fell in love with their authentic southern cuisine. Having these southern dishes gives me a nostalgic feel and reminds me about the good times I had spending my summers there and so I would like to share some of what I have experienced with our international community.

What’s your final product?

  • My final product will be an online-cookbook for 6 southern US dishes (biscuits and gravy, cajun shrimp and pasta, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken and waffles, pecan pie, peach cobbler). The cookbook will include cooking tutorials, list of ingredients, a written out recipe for each dish as well as the history of each dish.

Do you believe Personal Project is even necessary? Will it in any way help you out in the future?

  • Personally, I feel like personal projects can be a waste of time, especially the documentation process and supervisor meetings. Supervisor meetings are beneficial to keep you on track of tasks but it is also useless because sometimes I would want to go ahead and start doing the next task but I would have to ask the coordinator as my supervisor does not get to make a call on what the next steps are. In addition, I would much rather identify a topic and jump right into creating the product. I believe that the personal project should be optional instead of it being fixed for students to complete it because it is forcing students to determine right then and there their passion/ interest; some students’ personal project aren’t even about their interest but they had to choose something or they will be behind. However, I believe that the personal project is designed to challenge students to learn how to balance, organize and prioritize their school work, extracurricular activities with the personal project because, to my knowledge, in DP, there is a lot of work and if students cannot improve their self-management skills then they will struggle in the future and in DP.

How do you feel about Personal Project in general? What’s been challenging so far? Any tips or tricks for others?

  • So far, there have been some ups and downs. For example, during summative week, I had to juggle completing my research, action plan and source analysis for the personal project as well as my subject-class’ summatives so I had to prioritize and stay on task to finish them. But generally, personal project is not as bad as I thought it would be, yet. A tip I would give others is when you get a task, just finish it! If you delay it for so long, you will be stressed out because you won’t be able to catch up. It simply is just planning ahead. Keep track of the incoming summative tasks and if you have time, just spend a solid half an hour or an hour to catch up on your personal project and process journal. I did say that the process journal/ documentation is quite a waste of time but it would be useful when you write out your report because you are already doing the heavy work. For the process journal, you should customize it to your aesthetic and function. What I did was I skimmed through the given template and captured the key things each entry should have and I created a themed style throughout the process journal making it easy for my to comprehend and my supervisor. To my fellow G10s, goodluck and if you need to rant, I’m here for it.

– Malin (G10)


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