1. Description of Our Community
WunDe Elementary School of Fen-yuen Township, Chang-hua County, situated on Mesa Ba-gua, is at an altitude of 350 meters. The average temperature is two degrees lower than that of the ground level. Being the highest school in Chang-hua County , one can see the scenery of Chang-hua, Tai-chung and Nan-tou counties from the third floor of the school. Route 139, the national-standard bicycle trail, passes through here. The Movement of Reshaping Urban and Rural Landscape- Creating a Demonstration of Urban and Rural Landscape- miraculously transformed WunDe into a shining jewel in Bagua Mountains in 2006.
TaChu Village, where WunDe Elementary School is at, derived its name from “Ta Chu Wei”, a settlement where theold-time villagers planted bamboos around their houses to block strong winds and burglars. Located on the southwest of Fen-yuen Township, Chang-hua County, the village has an area of 3.76 square kilometers.. It borders Hsi-tou Village in the east, Nan-tou City in the south, Yuen-lin Township in the west and Chung-lun Village in the north.
TaChu Village as well as Chung-lun and Tung-an villages in the north are all on peneplain of Mesa Ba-gua. At an altitude of about 350-360 meters, it is the highest village in Chang-hua County. The villagers mainly reside on the peneplain of the west; i.e., on Ta-chang Road (Route 139). The warm and friendly villagers live a simple life by farming. The mountains are home to pineapple and plums. There are tourist attractions nearby, such as Old Water Trail and Pao-sheng Temple.
There are three major roads leading to the outside world. One is Ta-chang Road, which is also known as Route 139 and goes to Chang-hua City in the north. Another one is Chiu-chien Road, which runs east-west and was named after Chiu-chien Hsu, the seventh and eighth township master, in memory of his contribution to building the road. The last one is Yuen-tsao Road, which is also known as Route 148 and passes through Kui-lun, the northeastern part of the village.
2. Summary of Our Project
This project focuses on creating TaChu Village Green Map, on which ecological and cultural spots are clearly identified and represented with global icons. This digital Green Map is produced with the techniques of Information Technology and webpage-building. It is a combination of IT, ecology and rural awareness. It is a practice of bearing locality in mind and advancing into the future as our slogan says: “Keep TaChu to Heart, Bear WunDe in Mind.”
This project planned field trips to regions rich in natural ecology and local culture, and combined efforts of teachers, students and parents in observing, exploring and recording the natural ecological and cultural aspects of the campus and community. The result is presented with digital Green Map. In the future, teaching materials on ecological hiking trails will be created and long-term guide service and training regarding ecological environment and local culture will be provided in hopes of educating parents and children to become ranger guides and raising children to be aware of the heritage of their township and ecological environment.
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:not sure
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):
At school there is a computer room equipped with 20 computers for students to use. They are all connected to the Internet; therefore, it is convenient to communicate online, look for information and print documents. The staff each has a notebook to use and a basic command of using the computer and editing web pages.
At home only a portion of the team members have computers to use and only a few of them are connected to the Internet due to the fact that our school is located in a remote area in Chang-hua County and lacks information and resources. Therefore, most of the work is done at school.
Wireless Broadband at school allows students to use a PDA or notebook to search for information on campus.
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
WunDe Green-life Explore Team is vibrant and enthusiastic. Even though we lack resources and information due to its remote location, the students are keen to study and research. We have concluded our obstacles and solutions as follows: 1.Lack of resources and information due to its remote location. (1)The school endeavors to provide as much information as possible. (2)Seeking help from colleges (Department of Mathematics and Graduate Institute of Statistics and Information Science of National Chang-hua University of Education 2.Enthusiastic but ignorant team members (1)Visiting institutions and interviewing experts (2)Reading related books and doing group discussions 3.Green Map is a new and unfamiliar research topic in Taiwan. (1)Asking for advice from experts (2)Visiting institutions and interviewing experts
5. Our Project Sound Bite
“Green Map is no longer just a map but a process that we went through and valued. What we really wanted to achieve was to recover human attachment to land and the connection among people and it was achieved in the process of exploring our surroundings step by step.” It was a valuable experience to learn to become part of the natural and cultural environment and to cherish and enjoy it.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
Expertise of Teachers
The participating teachers have formed a small learning group and contributed their expertise in the process of discussing with the students and cooperating with other teachers specialized in different domains. They have had to familiarize ourselves with research techniques in order to acquire professional knowledge for future research in related domains. Moreover, the teachers have also enhanced their professional image and dedication to achieve the goal of teacher-student collaboration as well as mutual improvement.
Progress of Students
The nine-year education system reform stresses a student’s capability in integrating knowledge of all subjects and applying his abilities. The students have strengthened their abilities to combine their knowledge of every subject and apply it on reading and making web pages. What they have learned in this activity will help them learn independently and increase their interest in future learning.