CyberFair Project ID: 2607

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Touring to Traditional Mansions of the Lai Family
Category: 6. Historical Landmarks
Bibliography: No bibliography page cited

School: Tatsuen Junior High School
    Changhua, Taiwan, Taiwan

12 students, ages 14-15 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 21, 2003. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 0

Classes and Teachers: Chengchung Huang

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Tatsuen is a small village located in Changhua, the central part of Taiwan.There are neither many tall buildings nor glittered streets with neon lights shining.In spite of the rapid social and cultural changes outside the world,it always keeps its tranquil style. Maybe you are that busy,but as soon as you step on this place,it seems that everything will be calming down.You may sit down on the bench in their yards and chat with the villagers.They would love you to take some sips of oolong tea and tell you interesting stories about the old Chinese mansion. These old-aged mansions show not only our ancients' wisdom but their morality,education,expectation,wishes and dreams. Although the buildings can't talk,we can "communicate" with our ancients by visiting them. If possible, welcome to Tatsuen and say "Hello" to our mansions. That will be a fantastic date in your life.

2. Summary of Our Project

We have usually ridden our bikes shuttling on the paths in Tatsuen since we were young. Under the blue sky and between the green bamboos and tall trees, the roof ridges of the old Chinese mansions are so attractive and deeply catch our attentions. From the old mansions, we know the ancients' life style and their ideas about art. But time goes by,the old mansions are becoming weaker. They are suffering from strong wind and heavy rain year after year. They also have to be attacked by unexpectedly earthquakes. Every time when we saw some workers fix the broken parts of the mansions with concrete and steel,our hearts were bleeding. We are so worried about their withering lives. We hope to keep the beauty of the old mansions eternal by attending the CyberFair project. It will remind more people to emphasize the antique mansions, appreciate them and protect them. We'll let the people all over the world know that there are "big old boxes" preserving the tracks of our ancients in this pretty village.

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:21-50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:1

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dial-up modem

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:4-6

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

In our school, the computer laboratory, including four teachers' offices, is equipped with computers, printers and projectors available for all the teachers but not for students. Some of the classes have their own class homepages. It’s not common for teachers to keep contact with parents through e-mail. We hope we can do it in the near future.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

Our problems are: a.We used the wrong software when we wanted to key in our data at the beginning. b.Computers and electronic appliances sometimes didn’t work out, which delayed our schedule. c.It was hard to find time to work together and the deadline was almost up. d.We especially lacked the experience of making a complicated homepage.

Our solutions are: a.We asked our teachers for help b.We overworked in the school’s computer laboratory. c.We sacrificed our free time to learn more about software like upload, frontpage, Flash, image express, etc…

5. Our Project Sound Bite

Our maxim : "No pain , no gain"

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

We developed the project based on the curriculum area, Arts and the Humanities, which are usually ignored in Taiwan. So in our pages, we presented our love towards the local color, we communicated with our villagers and discussed our opinions with others all over Taiwan Island by e-mail. We tried to find out the different life styles between the past and nowadays, The narratives and the pictures on the books are no more nothing with us, but close to us. We not only hope to keep architecture features that belong to our culture, but also shared them with others all over the world.

Project Elements

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

a.Hardware: Computer, Internet, digital cameras, digital audio recorders. These tools can be connected to computers and save a lot of time of film editing and picture processing computers, scanners, printers. The essential tools for our project. b.Software : FrontPage, Flash 6, Cool360, Those software makes our homepage more interesting. Photo Impact, PhotoShop, MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) We add pictures and sound effect to our homepage with the software which are the most helpful to our project.

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

We visited the owner of every old mansion. In fact, they were the best spokespersons. We realized that every part of the mansion exerted their ancestors’ painstaking efforts. When we presented the information, books, and photos to them, they felt astonished. They didn’t believe their ancestor mansions were so pretty and meaningful. They knew the value of their mansions. They also felt touched to see we were willing to spend much time and energy to let their mansions be on-line. They were proud of their mansions showing on the computers all over the world.

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

Through interviewing the villagers, we found many of them were touched by their ancestor history and their mansions. They knew nothing or a little for their past and the environments. We talked with individuals, downloaded the data, and read books. Then we shared these with the villagers. The elders told us about the past, and others listened to them. The love flew between us. We aroused the old men’s memories and stimulated young guys to appreciate the beauty of our Chinese architecture. During the activities, we got a lot of love. That’s the most important for us.

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

In the process of doing the project, we got a lot of help and advice from a lot of people. For example, our teachers taught us how to collect information, edit our page effectively, make homepages and use different resources to make our project more convincing. Our alumnus, now studying in colleges, were also willing to help us with English translation or sharing their experience of making homepages. Most important of all, it is our parents' love and encouragement that support us to achieve our goal. With the aid of these people, we learnt a lot from them and finally finished our project. We can't show more gratitude for what they have done for us!

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

Within these three months, we have learnt that, as the modern citizens of Changhua county, some abilities or concepts are required: 1. Combining what you are learning with the Internet. Since the speed, reliability, and availability of the Internet improve, now we should take advantage of it to expand our knowledge by surfing this vast repository of information. When gathering information related to Chinese traditional architecture, surprisingly we found a lot of Chinese traditional architecture websites, which are much more than we had expected. We didn't have to spend a whole day in libraries. 2. We also have learned an old mansion seemed ugly, but abound with wisdom. Before we did the project, we knew nothing about the old mansions. Worst of all, most of the villagers also ignored the value of the ancestor mansions and their meanings. Few people were willing to protect them and repair them. But now we are very glad in our hometown there are still some interested persons preserving them well. They will become the spotlights of Tatsuen. And they are the unique in the world. 3. Share what you have learned with others. After finishing our project, we realize that students are not only the receivers of knowledge but also the givers of what they have learned. Through Internet, it is easy to share what we think with others and exchange opinions. Many people learn many details about Chinese traditional architecture through our homepage. And we also get many ideas from others. We believe it is the best way of learning!


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 2607)

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