Ancient Temple in the Alley - Fude Temple on Dianzai Street
Category: 5. Local Attractions (Natural and Man-Made)
School: Yu-Tsai Billingual Elementary School
New Taipei City, , Taiwan
10 students, ages 10-12 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 10, 2019.
They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2010,2011,2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018
Classes and Teachers: Christina Chen, Sunny Peng, Tina Yang, Adam Cheng, David Chen
Our School's Web Site:
1. Description of Our Community
Our school is located in Yonghe district, New Taipei City. Yonghe is located in the southeast corner of Taipei Basin, and its boundary with Taipei City is marked by Xindien River. There are currently Zhongzheng Bridge, Fuhe Bridge, and Yongfu Bridge that connect the two cities, and they facilitate the prosperous growth of Yonghe district. There are many business districts and markets for residents of Yonghe to enjoy. Besides the Korean Street and Lehua Night Market, Yonghe residents can head to Yang San Lang Art Museum or Fuhe Holiday Flower Market for more artistic venues and immerse themselves in the city’s relaxed atmosphere. Fude Temple on Dianzai Street, the subject of our research, is not only the historic, cultural, and religious center of Yonghe, but also the place that brings peace of mind to the locals. The temple cares about the people of Yonghe, and it is also the place where selfless love is offered to all unconditionally.
2. Summary of Our Project
In 1671, the boom in transportation by the river made Yonghe district the center of commodity trade. Ships used to dock by what is presently Xiulang Road for business and rest, and that made the region more prosperous with more shops opening up. The region started to boom with more business activities, and the name Dianzai street (street with small shops) was given. It also became the first commercial area of Yonghe. The locals and the nearby businesses followed the tradition of building an Earth God temple (Fude temple) to bring protection and good fortune, and followers have been coming nonstop to the temple to pray ever since. Fude Temple on Dianzai Street has been around for more than three hundred years, and it is also one of the most famous Earth God temples in northern Taiwan. Undoubtedly, it is the Earth God temple with the longest history in Yonghe. Fude Temple on Dianzai Street continued Earth God’s spirit of protecting and caring for the locals with activities like ‘Donate Rice Instead of Gold’ to take care of disadvantaged locals. The temple takes donations from followers and channels them to people in need, spreading love to all corners of the society. Yu-Tsai’s Cyberfair squad worked as a team on the topic. We learned more about the unique cultural values of the Fude Temple on Dianzai Street through interviews, field studies, researches, and participating in activities. We aimed to foster the spirit of caring for others and the notion of ‘it’s better to give than to receive.’ Our team members would first be seeds that study and experience the spirit of giving from the Fude Temple on Dianzai Street before introducing it to other schools, people in the community, and the world.
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:more than 6
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):
[School Internet Facilities] We relied on school’s academic network to access the Internet. There are fifty computers in the computer lab for regular classes and the Cyberfair project. There are one to four computers in each administrative office, and there is one computer in each classroom. Each computer has access to the Internet, and this allows us to discuss, research, and print materials for the project. Our Internet runs on the fiber optic network that is connected to the education network of New Taipei city. We also have wireless connection for teachers. [Internet Access at Home for the Team] ADSL, fiber optic, wireless network [How we handle information] We use school’s Internet facilities for the project mostly. If there is something for us to take home, we use memory sticks, Google Drive, or e-mails to store our work. We would then upload our work onto school’s network the next day.
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
1. Data collection: Deity is very abstract. When we were collecting data on the Internet, we were not able to verify the accuracy of data. We relied on multiple sources to cross-reference the source. In addition, staff from the temple and writings on the lunar calendar gave us a more supporting data on the topic. 2. Interviews and surveys: When we first started asking people for an interview, we were not well-received because we interrupted them when they were in the middle of their prayer. As a result, we learned to wait until people finished worshipping before approaching them for an interview. We got a lot of interviews done and collected valuable first-hand data! 3. Time allocation:There is always work for Cyberfair, and when it comes around exam time, we had to allocate our time wisely. After a few months of training, we were able to prioritize our work. We learned to be more efficient so we would have time to help our teammates out and do the things that we enjoy. 4. Express ourselves Before joining Cyberfair, I was really nervous about expressing myself. I kept on telling myself to be brave and amplify my voice, and gradually, I got over it. Now, I’m able to give a guided tour of them temple in front of my schoolmates and help out at the temple confidently. I know as long as I practice, I’m able to do it! My performance may not be the best, but I will always finish my mission bravely.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
In our research, we learned a lot about Taiwanese folk religion from Fude Temple on Dianzai Street. After the research, we will be able to appreciate temples from different perspectives in our future visits. In order to complete various activities for the project, we learned to work closely with our teammates, interview and survey strangers, perform in front of schoolmates, give a guided tour of the temple to our classmates, and handle different jobs at the temple. We shared the results with our schoolmates, teachers, people in the community, and the whole world. Even though Cyberfair took up a lot of our time, we were happy because we got a lot out of it! The rare opportunities to expand our horizon and research on such a unique project are truly amazing. ‘You reap what you sow’ is a good way to describe our learning experience at Cyberfair.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
Even though we did not sit in the class or open a textbook, we still gained valuable insights into different fields of learning, and that was what the Grade 1-9 Curriculum was all about. 1.Language: We collected data and organized them into meaningful contents for the project. When we conducted interviews and surveys, our ability to listen and communicate has also improved. The project has helped us improve our linguistic proficiencies in listening, speaking, reading, and writing.
2.Math: In order to understand how locals and worshippers perceive praying and how well they know about Fude Temple on Dianzai Street. After the survey, we used spreadsheet software to tabulate and analyze the results before presenting them in graphic forms.
3.Social Studies: Through this research, we gained insights into Fude Temple on Dianzai Street, such as its history, promotion of folk religion, working at the temple, and charity work. We want them to see how Fude Temple on Dianzai Street, a traditional folk culture, is progressing with time.
4.Arts and Humanities: In our research, we used our artistic talents to produce animation, storybook, deity puppets, hand-drawn pictures, games, and online videos. We used our editing skills to modify photos before using them on the project website.
5.Science and Life Technology: We collected data using the Internet. We used devices to record interviews and activities and cloud technology to store data. The use of various information technologies greatly enhanced our technological capabilities. 6.Integrative Activities: We learned to express our opinions while respecting those of the others. The project helped us see the importance of teamwork and being responsible. We learned the importance of teamwork, and we were able to complete the research on Fude Temple on Dianzai Street in the end.
1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?
[Software] *Windows 10: Operating system for the project. *Internet Explorer?Google Chrome: Collecting information on websites. *Microsoft Power Point 2016: Script of play, in-class presentation *Microsoft Word 2016: Designing survey, worksheets, compiling reports and findings of the project. *Microsoft Excel 2016: Analyzing survey results, drawing graphs and spreadsheets. *PhotoImpact X3: Editing and designing of photos, videos, team badges, make-a-wish card, tour flag, deity introduction, drawings, and website. *Scratch2.0: New Year divination lot game. *X-mind: Drawing of mind map for the project. *Adobe Dreamweaver CS6: Building the project website. *Google Classroom: Turning in project research assignment. *Google Drive: Saving and storing files. *PowerDirector 15: Editing of videos for guided tour, theatric play, and still-frame animation. *Stikbot: Filming of still-frame animation. *FileZilla: Uploading project website.
[Hardware] *Digital camera: Recording events and progress of the project. *Digital video recorder: Recording activities and performances, filming introduction video. *Microphone: Recording voices for animation, event promotion, performance. *Projector and computer: Playing videos, in-class presentations *Tablet PC: Filming still-frame animation. *Smartphone: Filming still-frame animation, recording interviews *Portable storage device: Saving and storing files. *Scanner: Scanning related data and hand-drawn pictures. *Laser Printer: Printing event related data and project related information.
2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.
1.Interaction with the Temple: After finalizing the research topic, we started researching on Fude Temple on Dianzai Street. We collected data on the Internet, visited the temple, took part in the guided tour, and interviewed locals and staff to get to know the temple better. We hosted guided tour of our own and worked at the temple to uncover more stories of how the temple is not only promoting a traditional religious culture, but also advocating charity work and environmental protection.
2.Interaction with the Community: After taking part in an activity at the temple, we interviewed worshippers and surveyed them on what worshipping means to them and the way they would like to get to know the temple better. Furthermore, we interviewed the locals to see their view on the culture of worshipping. We introduced the temple to them and hoped they would visit the temple in their free time. The feedbacks that the worshippers and the locals shared with us were extremely valuable.
3.Interaction with Teachers and Students: We shared the results from different activities with our schoolmates and teachers. While giving a temple guided tour, we invited interested students to join us; during in-class presentation, we introduced unique stories about the temple; during Earth God Week, we displayed deity puppets and introduced each deity in brief; through still-frame animation, we introduced Earth God, Tiger God, and the culture of worshipping; during Earth God’s Blessing, students sent make-a-wish cards to Earth God and got a reply; during the New Year divination lot event, we created a program to help students and teachers experience divination lot; during performances, we used storytelling and stage performances to introduce the traditional folk religion and Fude Temple on Dianzai Street to teachers and schoolmates.
3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?
Before the project, very few of us had visited the historic Fude Temple on Dianzai Street, which was only a short ten-minute walk away from our school. Due to our young age, we did not know much about the procedures for praying or the stories behind each deity. We simply followed our parents to the temple to pray. After six months of researches and activities, we got to know the temple and the cultural aspect of praying better, and we also realized that Fude Temple on Dianzai Street is not merely a religious center for the locals, but also a place that ties the locals together with love, caring, and charity work. Our research and activities also helped students and teachers at Yu-Tsai and the locals experience the traditional religious culture at Fude Temple on Dianzai Street. On the project website, besides the temple, we have also presented stories about the temple in creative ways. We invited people who know the history of the temple well to give us suggestions on and check the accuracy of the history, deities, and culture aspects of our website content. After the site was complete, we invited people from the temple, teachers, and parents to give us feedbacks. Everyone who has viewed our site said our content was solid, and it provided a good introduction on the temple and the culture of praying. The learning and experiencing aspects were also very interesting, worth spending more time on!
4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?
1. Social Services Division, Yonghe District Office: We would like to thank Ms. Huang Shumei of Social Services Division at Yonghe District Office for recommending us to focus our research on Fude Temple on Dianzai Street. Through studying this historic temple, we got a chance to know Taiwan’s traditional folk religion and do in-depth research on how folk religion and the locals interacted with each other. We couldn’t wait until the project is complete so we may share our findings with everyone. 2. Temple Staff: We would like to thank Chairman Cao for giving us the opportunity to get a first-hand experience working at the temple’s foundation. We learned how the foundation pooled charitable resources together and then channeled them to the right people or group. We would like to thank the temple’s consultant Mr. Zhang for giving us a tour of the temple and sharing interesting stories about the temple. We would like to thank the temple staff for providing us with information that we need for the project and experience work at the temple even when they were busy. 3. Members of the community: We would like to thank the people of Yonghe for taking their time to have an interview and survey with us. Their answers helped us understand this crown jewel in Yonghe, and we also obtained valuable data to enrich the content of our website.
5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)
[Discoveries] 1. Temple Culture Overload: Through the Fude Temple on Dianzai Street project, I’ve gained a more profound understanding about folk religion in Taiwan. After interviewing temple staff, I found that every temple has its uniqueness. Fude Temple on Dianzai Street is not only a building, but also a center for religion and charitable work. 2. Power of Teamwork: Throughout the project, each team member got a chance to contribute in his or her own way. Some drew amazing pictures, some handled interviews so well, and some were just born to perform on stage. Therefore, we cherished the opportunities and worked hard. With everyone working together, teamwork is going to help us showcase the temple’s spirit to the world and bring our research to a successful conclusion. [Lessons] In Cyberfair, we learned to prepare for everything ahead of time because what might seem insignificant could turn out to be a handful when we had to do it by ourselves. Like hosting an interview, we must prepare ahead of time and gather some basic information about the interviewee. We also need to practice a few times so when the actual interview comes, we would be ready to get the answers we need. [Surprises] After this research, we found that Fude Temple on Dianzai Street is really a special place! The temple actively promotes the use of offering rice to replace paper money. However, some worshippers could not accept the change and insisted on burning paper money because they believe the burning of paper money is the only way to send their sincerity to deities. We believe with the temple’s persistent push for change, worshippers would be able to adopt new ways of praying, the deities would be able to see worshippers’ sincerity, and our environment would get cleaner!
View our CyberFair Project
(Project ID: 8446)