CyberFair Project ID: 4943

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Directing the last scene in life—Life Ceremonialist
Category: 2. Community Groups and Special Populations

School: Da An Elementary School
    Taipei, Taiwan, Taiwan, Repubic of China

8 students, ages between 9~12 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 13, 2007. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2006

Classes and Teachers: GUO, Mei-Hong

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site: http://

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Located in the Da An District of Taipei City, and surrounded by numerous higher educational institutions, Da An Elementary School dwells in a community that is full of humanistic atmosphere, with further convenient transportation and well-developed commercial activities. Although the school is located in the busy commercial area; however, nearby the school, there is the Fu Zhou Mountain, the Seventh Public Cemetery of Taipei City. And the school is further close to Taipei Municipal Second Funeral House. Therefore, plenty funeral services business are surrounded the school, built up a so-called “funeral street culture.” Furthermore, some of the parents of pupils conduct the related funeral business. This creates a unique landscape and a special occupation feature for the CBD of Da An District. In the beginning, our definition to local community only applied to the funeral business or life MC (Master of Ceremony). However, along our consecutive visits, interviews, contacts, and study of materials, we then considered the term “local community” should be extended to people of every place, of every corner, including those of all kinds of business and of all variety. Like other occupation, almost all of the Life MCs are workers with good attention and hard working attitude. We try to walk into this field to know, to observe, and to discover them. After self-experience, we later understand more about their hardship giving, and appreciate more about the hard-working side of each business. At the same time, we may better appreciate the pain and tiredness of our parents paid for our living; and may obtain the right perception of the “meaning of life.”

2. Summary of Our Project

The taboo of “death” for ordinary people always exists, who normally hold the mindset of “not to discuss, nor to touch”. We escape and show indifference to matters of “life aftermath.” Once, in the Composite Activity class, the teacher discussed with us upfront about the value and meaning of life, and further discussed about how we are going to face the death of our beloved, our relatives, and even ourselves. In the beginning, the people, the matters, and the things the teacher described was incomprehensible or inexperienced for us; later we gradually realized that life has its end. By this end, there would be a solemn graduation: a fare-well ceremony. Because there are funeral house and funeral business nearby the school, Jing-Xuan thus suggested to study the funeral service business, and the Life MC that specializes assisting to conduct “life aftermath” matters for the family who have relative passed away. A journey of experience hence commenced. For this project, we especially select “Life MC (Master of Ceremony)” as the subject. We tried to design interviews of various levels, including the Principal, Chairman of Parents Association, Administrative Division Heads of Da An Elementary School, funeral institutions, Life MC s, and schoolmates whose families run funeral business, and so on. We further added on the literature review done previously, combined the historical context, job contents of Life MC and the funeral customs. We then added in the new issues observed during the conducting of the project. Eventually, through the research and site-inspection, we wish the study results will allow everybody to acquire a deeper understanding toward issues such as life, aging, and death, and to make life better.

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:1

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

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 Network Environment We have sound hardware facilities on campus—each class has its own computer. In addition to three computer classrooms and one multi-media classroom, it also supports on-campus local network (fiber bones and 100M), internet networking (outward fiber 10M), and hard disk space for networking for the entire faculties and students. Therefore, it is very convenient and efficient in collecting information, teaching softwares, and making web-pages.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

?Between School Work and Project Work? We need continuously arranged time to accomplish the details of the research project, including setting up the plan, collecting information, integrating teammates, dividing task-force, communicating and discussing, contacting interviews and visits, sorting the materials, writing up the contents, designing and making the web-pages, and so on. Meanwhile, we still need to take care of school assignments, various tests and exams. Some of our teammates needed to go to cram schools after school. All these external factors made us feel hard-working. Luckily, teachers kept reminding us that doing research itself takes hardworking and time-consumption. By this, we became more confident and perseverant to keep on strive for the project. ?Making of the Web Pages? To us, the beginners of new learners of web-page making, the design of webpage, arrangement of the pictures, and visual animation effects are with high degree of difficulty and complexity. Hence, teachers usually taught us the techniques of web-page making in the Wednesday afternoons, letting us understand the operation skills and knowledge of web-page step by step. ?Data Collecting and Sorting-Out? Due to Life MC is a new occupation in recent years, the related writing materials are limited. Fortunately, the interviewees were warm-hearted to provide materials that supplement the difficulty of our data collection. In the sorting-out of data, we wrote up every interview through the recording pen, which took us quite a long time. ?Terminology? Due to the subject of the study is on Life MC, there are some related funeral customs terminologies involved; thus, in writing the report contents and in interviewing the Life MC, we felt some difficulties. We worked hard to prepare and to try to understand the related terminologies one by one, and to overcome the study obstacles.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

In fact, while commencing the project, the team had little understanding to Life MC and funeral customs; however, after we read the related books, and viewed the related information from the websites, we gradually formed the initial ideas. Later, through discussions among the teammates and instructions from the teachers, we then learned much more precious knowledge. Through this project, we further realized the significance of life, and will employ right attitudes in facing future life. Last but not the least, we have very good communication and further understanding to our community that enrich our life experience a lot.

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

A. The Project Combines Life Education Curriculum The purpose of this project is mainly wishing to assist us to establish self life meaning and value via right attitude, and further to achieve goals of appreciating life, treasuring life, learning accept and respect other’s life. B. The Project Combines Local Original Culture Education Curriculum Through the internet fair research project, we used holidays to collect data and to photograph on each inspection and visiting sites. We extended the learning space toward outdoors to facilitate our understanding to local community that has such abundant and brilliant natural and humanistic essence. By understanding, we protect our homeland by action. C. The Project Combines Nature and Daily Life Technology Curriculum Through digital camera, we collect our visiting footprints comprehensively. At the same time, by digital recording pen, we recorded our interviews, and by employing school internet in searching information, we uploaded our reports onto the internet on time and on schedule. More importantly, we made our research fruition project webpage by various software that we learned, and thus to share our joy and harvest to everyone.

Project Elements

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

Including internet, digital camera, recording pen, scanner, printer, telephone, facsimile, FTP, E-mail, Mobile USB, CDRW, Drawing Board,and Computer Software (Dreamweaver, PhotoImpact, FlashFXP, Office, and so on).

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

A. Support from the School From planning, conducting, and accomplishing of the entire project, the Principal and Directors have been always supporting our activities, concerning our progress all the time, and encouraging us from time to time. They have been telling us to go for them anytime we met difficulties. In the morning gathering session, the Principal and Directors mentioned about our research project, delivered this message to the faculties and pupils of the entire school, and even to the parents in general, let everybody know that we were conducting the very project, inviting resource assistance provided from all directions. The Principal and Directors may be the best “Ambassador” and Spokesperson on campus. B. Interview Contacts In the beginning of the planning and conducting of the research project, we set up the interview subjects and data collection are primarily surrounded the school nearby funeral business. After discussed with the members, we came to the consensus that we first aimed “Long Yi International Services Co., Ltd.” as the interview subject. Mr. Zhou, the Boss of Long Yi, not only provided every bit of resources, but also asked the Life MCs to assist us in accomplishing the research project. Every time when we went to visit and interview somewhere, Mr. Zhou would concern for us about the progress, and even proposed his ideas and opinions to enrich our study contents. With the first visiting experience, we then moved on to the following visits and interviews: Ci-En Yuan, Soldier’s Cemetery, Jin-Bao-Shan Cemetery, Long-Yan Humanistic Co., Ltd., Funeral Administrative Management Division of Taipei City, and Taipei Municipal First and Second Funeral House that all went successfully in terms of data gathering. All of our team members are capable ambassadors, each did his/her best to make contacts and accomplished his/her task.

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

From the planning process of the research project, we learned that, A. Plan ahead, and you earn the profits of many times by only half work efficiency. B. Do your best while facing difficulties; fear nothing and confront bravely. Then you will grow and make progress. C. Through the visits and interviews, we feel the hardship side of every kind and type of business, and further realize their efforts and giving. We shall cherish all that parents presently offer to us. D. From the process of interview and contacting, to learn the proper attitudes and skills that helps greatly in future interpersonal relationship and dealing things. E. A deeper level of understanding on issues such as life value and aging and death that allow us to live a calm and composed life, and to better fulfill our lives. F. How to employ information technology to collect data, arrange words and art works, treat pictures, and make webpage, and so on in accomplishing the project. G. The significance of teamwork, and the attitudes of pursuing truth, knowing, and factuality in doing research, participating whole-heartedly.

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

To accomplish the project successfully, we would especially thank those interviewees, funeral institutions and Life MCs, parents of schoolmates, and teachers that ever offered us information and opinions. Among them, Mr. Zeng of Ji-Xing Paper Works Company offered us materials, Chairman and Life MCs of Long-Yi International Services Co., Ltd. assisted us whenever we met difficulties, such as data collecting, writing up contents, and graphic arrangements, and so on. They always found time to help us revising, modifying, and showing directions while they were busy at their own work, so that our research contents could be precisely presented, and further facilitate our project to be finished in a timely manner. Finally, we would like to pay special thanks to the Principal, Directors, and teachers who constantly encourage us and support us in the background that allow the project made successfully. In addition, we would like to thank three instructors who have sacrificed their precious leisure time almost every weekend to instruct us conducting the project. We here would like to thank all our friends that once offered a helping hand, and thus we present this project web page to wish everybody good health and everyday a wonderful day.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

In conducting the project, we found out that although Life MC is one of the numerous kinds of business; yet there are full of colorful stories behind the scene. For the research, in the beginning, we were all in the try-and-error stage both mentally and physically. Neither did we plan thorough fully that delayed the progress considerably. We then learned the lessons from it—to know the importance of teamwork. Besides, as many others, we in the beginning held the untouchable, non-discussed state of mind to deal with “matters of life aftermath.” From the research project, we have understood the treatment process of “matters of life aftermath,” and hence found out a handful wonders. For example, besides stand-by 24 hour-a day for service, a Life MC still needs to play the roles of Geographic Feng Shui Master, psychological Counselor, and/or religious master. Most importantly, he/she has to be no fear of touching dead body, or the appearing of spirit. In order to construct the research project, we not only interviewed the Principal and Directors at school, but also paid the on-site visits to the funeral houses, Soldiers Cemetery, and Jin-Bao-Shan Cemetery. For the purpose of to be real, we also interviewed the Life MCs and Paper Work Masters who use paper to mimic living goods. In addition, we designed the questionnaires for the school nearby funeral business to do survey. Down the road, we have been experiencing a lot, we expanded our vision of learning. We are thrilled to have the opportunities in participating in the project. We have grown up so much. In retrospection, we knew nothing about Life MC, nor to the funeral customs, let alone to the web page making. Now, the fruits present here. We surprisingly find out that we are full of unlimited potential.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 4943)

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