CyberFair Project ID: 3798

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Tai-Chiang Beauty
Category: 4. Local Specialties

School: Ying-Hai High School
    Tainan, Taiwan, Taiwan

16 students, ages 15~17 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 20, 2005. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2005

Classes and Teachers: Yang Huey-Chen, Yen Shu-Ching, Tsai Meng-Hsueh, Wang Cheng-Chi, Chen Ting-Lin, Huang Kuang-Tsung

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

The geographic location of our community is Tai-Chiang. This refers to Tainan (a historic city in the southern Taiwan) which covers the An-Nan District located in the North of Tainan City. It also includes the town of Chi-Ku in Tainan County.

In Chi-Ku, you can see women who are busy harvesting the oysters. When you are speaking of the Tsengwen River (the River that goes through the An-Nan District and the Chi-Ku area), the animal you can not ignore is a very precious bird called the Black-faced Spoonbill.

In the Szu-Tsao Wetland (incorporated in the An-Nan District), the Mangrove is one of its special features. Under the lush mangroves you can find many kinds of crabs crawling on the mud-bank. The National Taiwan Government classified this area as a “Mangrove Reserve” in 1988.

Our community was silted up by sand from the ancient Tai-Chiang inland seas. The big tidal land has only salt-pan and fish farms, and it’s abundant in salt makes it unsuitable for agricultural development. Because of rain’s cleaning and irrigation action we have rice paddies and have hope that the Tai-Chiang area will gradually become an agricultural region.

Tai-Chiang is a beautiful place and people are moving in to the area constantly. New buildings are set up like a shot and when the Tainan Science Park is completed it will accelerate the further development of Tai-Chiang. We believe that Tai-Chiang will achieve its full potential and will be a shining star in the future. The downside of this is that when science and technology are more developed, the ecosystem will gradually be destroyed. There is no real winner in this situation and we need to make sure that there is a clear balance that will not endanger the future of this area and its inhabitants.

2. Summary of Our Project

Our CyberFair 2005 entry, Tai-Chiang Beauty, was established to enrich the curriculum of our local community of Tai-Chiang. There is very little English data written about our local community. Due to that fact, it becomes our goal to generate information that could be utilized by other educational systems within the Tai-Chiang area and to also share its beauty with the world. Sixteen students in total completed this project that focuses on our community. We began our project with excitement and confidence and started off discussing how we would develop the website. Two student groups were formed, Computer and English groups, based on their specialty. 9 students made the web page, organising photos with texts, designing logo while 7 students focused on information searching, the language translation, writing, and editing the texts. Ms. Yang, one of the teachers, arranged for us to go on several excursions to Tai-Chiang and also to interview with Mr. Happy who is an expert in the Black-faced Spoonbill. Students listened and asked questions immediately after his elaborate answers gaining first-hand and authentic information. Allen, the student leader, and his father spent one weekend taking photos concerning the topics of oysters, salt-pan and the “Black-faced Spoonbill.” We also asked for permission from the photographers, Mr. Chen Tin-Lin and Mr. Cheng-Chi Wang, to contribute their vivid pictures of wetland ecology, coastal landscape, and Black-faced Spoonbill to this website which resulted in a wonderful combination of beauty. The CyberFair Project allowed us to present this beautiful collection while fulfilling a need for written information about our community.

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:2-3

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):

There are four computer classrooms in our school. We usually learn and work in the computer room with the best equipment. We always use the LAN network to access the Internet. Our linking tool is Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) with 10MB in fiber optics. Our members use computers to access networks by wide band services (ADSL) at school or home.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

The most pressure with our project came with figuring out how we should schedule our time. Students had to strike a balance between their schoolwork and the making of the website. Students need time to preview, and review, their studies in order not to fall behind their classmates whereas building the website would take plenty of time as well. We had to squeeze time searching for information, interviews, field-trips, and web-making after school.

Secondly, due to a lack of high proficiency in English we had to work a little harder. Topic-specific contents require specialized English, and biological and natural knowledge backgrounds along with their English expressions were required to explain our local specialties as clearly as possible.

Lastly, the idea of having to digest extensive academic data about Tai-Chiang, and then to restate it into their own words was of somewhat difficulty for these Taiwanese high school students.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

Most students wrote in their feedback that working on this website left them with memories that they would never ever forget. One day, we felt we that we probably wouldn’t be able to submit all of our project on time. We asked fellow students, “Do you feel like going on” and they all replied quickly with “I want to continue finishing this work”. Allen:“Making the website was really really really fun hard work!” Linda and Tara:“We felt very excited as their geography teacher mentioned the Black-faced Spoonbills in class.” The school staff:“The students’ level of website design was comparable to any professional’s.”

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

Our Tai-Chiang Beauty’s Learning Program requires that all high school students develop geographic and environmental knowledge of their local community of Tai-Chiang. The CyberFair Project provides a motivating and inspiring way to address the existing required coursework in Science and Technology, Social Studies, English Language, and Arts. The Project extended well beyond the curriculum standards. It contributes to developing communication skills (in panel discussion), designing animated graphics, organizing ideas into written texts, editing, writing, computer skills (in the website establishment), research skills (in data collection) and self-evaluation (in peer review).

The project facilitates fulfilment of the educational goals. Students practice, and master, a variety of skills and then present their hard-working outcome. There is a famous saying that goes, “Learning by doing.”

Another rewarding aspect of this project was the learning experience, which is not always pleasant, but students learned about “cooperation” and teamwork, how to handle pressure between coursework and website establishment, and further broaden their life experience and views in this international cyber project.

Project Elements

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

Telephone or cell phone, Internet, Digital camera, Libraries, Museum, Scanning machine, Photo Impact 8.0, Dream Weaver MX, and Flash MX.

We used the computer to accomplish most of our project and because the time is so limited, we communicated with each other to discuss our project by telephone or cell phone.

First, we collected the information we needed via the Internet and then figured out what we should do with that information. Secondly, we visited and interviewed the people whom the project is related to. We went on field trips to take photos by digital camera, and transfer them to our computers. Thirdly, we went to libraries and the museum, and scanned texts and pictures from books and articles which we needed. Finally, we began to make the website editing these pictures by Photo Impact 8.0.The website was designed by means of by Dream weaver MX and Flash MX.

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

The exploration of Tai-Chiang is truly a watershed partnership effort with students playing a substantial role in the conducting process. Students learned to communicate, to think for themselves, and to gather information little by little. Their earnest and open-minded attitudes caught many adults off guard. They interacted with residents, interviewed the researchers and photographers, and consulted them with informational questions. The work of these people in the community was much appreciated by the students.

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

Our CyberFair Project received positive feedback from the community, our school and the students. The on-line articles about “Tai-Chiang Beauty” are open to anyone and the web pages are being used as an electronic text by high school students throughout the Tai-Chiang area. The “On-line Test” on our website can be used for people to evaluate their knowledge regarding the Tai-Chiang area. The students who made the web pages developed a sense of achievement that they accomplished the Project as scheduled. This feeling of honor invites each one, themselves, to have a desire to explore this community more and to become student experts; meanwhile, their work attracts their fellow friends to join them. The Project has also received positive praise from schools, educational or nature researchers, teachers and parents. Local teachers of Geography and Biology are using the web pages about the “Black-faced Spoonbill”, Salt-pan and Mangroves as a teaching resource. English teachers can enjoy the texts as good reading material. The school authorities will also be burning a CD of the Project for the local Resource Center. The teachers inhabiting our district who have difficulty finding material on Tai-Chiang Nature Beauty and who are required to teach a unit on their local community can use these CDs or the website as reference tools.

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

We got plenty of assistance making the website. The project was a cooperative task between school, family and community. We are grateful to you: Parents who shuffled students to the Chi-Ku salt-pan, and the Black-faced Spoonbill and Wetland sites. Ms. Hui-Chun Yang, the school Computer teacher, who made many telephone calls and arranged interviews and field trips. The excitement was contagious and people came forward volunteering their knowledge and photographs. Mr. Cheng-Chi Wang (also known as Mr. Happy), who agreed to be interviewed and gave elaborate, interesting explanations about Black-faced Spoonbill.

Mr. Ting-Lin Chen, a photographer, who provided picturesque photographs and data concerning Wetland ecology and Coastal Landscape, and came to our school himself educating us about data-photo editing. Mr. Chin-Hui Lin, Ms. Yang’s husband, for offering hometown songs as website background music. A special thank you to Wild-bird Association and Black-faced Spoon-bill Conservation Association, for valuable data and photographs. Additionally, the school Principle, the Administrators of Finance, who served free fresh dinners for the teachers and students so that we didn’t have to rush home to eat; saving us time for making the web pages. Without the cooperation of all of these people, and continuous support of parents and school staff, this CyberFair Project would not have been possible. We Thank You All.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

A lesson learned in undertaking this research project was learning about plagiarism and providing correct references to what was important. Also, cooperation as a teamwork was learned. Students did not ask how much other members should do, but asked how much each one him or herself could contribute. There was a discovery that students should be able to assemble a product of their own. Student learning was greatly reinforced by doing the activity. They learned many English words and did use them in the authentic context.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 3798)

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