CyberFair Project ID: 8571

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Driving the Agricultural Industry in Taiwan —Fenggu Company
Category: 3. Business and Community Organizations

School: Changhua County Sihu Junior High School
    Changhua County, None, Taiwan

10 students, ages 13-14 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on January 25, 2021. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

Classes and Teachers: Hsin-jung Hung, Chiu-yun Yang, Shu-wei Lin

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Fangyuan Township is located on the western coast of Changhua County. The township’s shape is slightly rectangular. It is on an alluvial plain, with a total area of 97.21, created by the deposition of sediments from the Wu River and the Chuoshui River. With the Taiwan Strait on its west side, Fangyuan Township was once the second largest harbor in Taiwan, second only to Lukang. There is a vibrant aquaculture fishery industry, evidenced by the numerous oyster farms along the coast. The oyster farmers use oxen for cart pulling. This unique “sea-ox culture” has been registered as a national treasure of cultural assets. Over recent years, Wanggong Village has been the operational hub of oyster farming. The local tourist industry is centered on oyster. Oyster harvesting and savoring in the beauty of coastal scenery is a major sightseeing attraction. Whilst the coastal economy in Fangyuan Township relies on aquaculture fishery, the inland area is a typical farming community. The landscape is dominated by paddy fields, with simple huts here and there. This is where Fenggu Company is located.

2. Summary of Our Project

In Taiwan, rice is on our dining table every day. It is an agricultural product that we take pride in. Rice appeared in the written history of Taiwan over 400 years ago. The evolution of the rice industry, from 100% human labor to modern equipment, is the achievement of efforts from our ancestors. With this, Taiwan is now able to provide technical support to many developing countries. We knew about the growing, milling, and distribution of rice, but we did not know about rice drying as part of the workflows. The company we are studying, Fenggu Company, is a specialist in rice drying – buying rice from farmers, drying rice, then packaging rice to milling plants or farmers’ associations. The second-generation business owner, Mr. Chen, took over the rice drying plant from his father. A graduate with training in machinery, Mr. Chen purchased extra equipment and slowly pieced up the missing elements of rice drying. He added a rice husk furnace, something other rice dryers do not have. Other rice dryers use diesel as the energy but his furnace dries rice by burning rice husk. In fact, the ashes can be used too. This reduces costs and protects the environment. After Taiwan joined the WTO, its traditional agricultural industry has been affected. This combined with the dietary change of the Taiwanese people has impacted the business of rice dryers. Anchored on its business philosophy of safety, speed, and simplicity, Fenggu Company has gained trust from farmers and built a stable clientele. It has established a firm footing in the crowded space of rice farmers in Changhua. With unwavering commitment to its business philosophy, Fenggu Company hopes to expand its operational scale and continue to work for the local 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:more than 6

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

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:2-3

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

We used computers in the school and at home. We also connected onto the Internet via wide-area networks or WiFi/4G to facilitate our discussion and production of the Cyberfair project. To share and collaborate in our work, the team members created a cloud drive for uploading documents and pictures. Sihu Junior High School provides a great access to IT facilities and networks. We did most of the Cyberfair project work during the morning study hour, the lunch break or between classes. We also worked from home by using our own personal computers.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

We encountered many challenges for the Cyberfair project. As we were all first-timers, we were clueless with the process. The biggest problem was that we did not know much about the rice drying industry. To formulate the research direction and to develop interview questions, we logged online to search for information on rice. We also visited the owner of Fenggu Company during holidays and conducted an on-site investigation. All the scheduling and logistics issues needed to be resolved. With the topic in mind, the next challenge was listening to voice recordings, summarizing key points and writing about the findings. Some of the team members were not good writers. Or they had troubles following the interviewee or simply did not focus. As a result, our reports were rejected by our teachers and we had to rewrite. It was a painful process and a test on our persistence. However, we continued to brainstorm and collect information and finally completed the interview and the article! Since we could not get together after school, we had to use the morning study hour, the lunch break, and between classes to discuss and work on the Cyberfair project. During weekends and holidays, we uploaded our writings and other data onto the cloud drive, so that everybody could review and make changes. We needed to juggle between the Cyberfair project and the schoolwork by cutting down the time for relaxation. As a result, we had to try hard not to doze off in class. We were all cautious in the final stage of webpage production because we were all rookies and the process was complicated. We were worried that one misstep would mess up the whole website. Fortunately, we accomplished our work in the end.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

Webpage production was not an easy journey. However, this experience taught us something we could not acquire from textbooks. From the initial contact, interviews, writing to website construction, the Cyberfair project developed not only our capability and experience in special topic research but also our knowledge in the rice industry and its importance to Taiwan. When asked to write about our afterthoughts, some of the team members enthusiastically shared the fond memories but others could not summarize much after hours of thinking. A few of us were even asked by the teacher to rewrite our accounts. Nonetheless, the knowledge, skills, and experience accumulated from the project are something more cherishable to us than the work we have done.

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

For the subject of language arts, we learned about data organization and collection, and practiced our writing skills for the website contents. For the subject of life science and technology, we learned about the growth and improvement of rice, the procedures of rice drying, and machineries used for rice drying. For arts and humanities, we learned to take photos and design webpages. For the subject of social studies, we learned about the business background of Fenggu, rice trading, and its management.

Project Elements

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

We used MS Word for text and data editing, Filezilla to upload our documents and data, Editplus to produce webpages, Google browser to conduct online search and data collection, Google drive for storing data, FTP & WEB Server for file browsing, PhotoCap 6.0, Pixlr for photo editing, and Font awesome services for decorative icons and symbols.

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

To promote rice and embrace the entrepreneurial spirit of Fenggu, which cares about the rice farmers, the students developed a website to share related information, and held presentations in classrooms. The team also organized rice cooking activities in the homemaking course. By sharing the knowledge of rice, promoting the rich rice culture, and appraising the entrepreneurial spirit of Fenggu, more people could understand the essence of business operation, and cherish the gourmet taste of rice.

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

The participation in the Cyberfair project allows us to re-establish our understanding of the rice business, an important industry in Taiwan. We hope the research findings can encourage people to cherish rice and eat rice, so that the local rice culture can continue. We wish more people can get to know the rice industry in Taiwan and appreciate the efforts and commitment from small firms such as Fenggu Company. We started with no idea what Cyberfair project was about. We collected data, conducted interviews, wrote manuscripts and finally produced our website. Team members occasionally had conflicting opinions or experienced bottlenecks in the process. However, we gradually accomplished our work through discussions and with guidance from our teachers. We came to understand the importance of teamwork and time management. Detailed information will be shown on our website.

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

We are glad to share our project on the school website, and with the community residents. We have held visits, and invited local organizations and our parents to visit Fenggu. Based on our school curriculum, we have planned experiential activities, held rice cooking classes, and organized rice tasting activities, so that more people could learn about the rice culture. We also invited the owner of Fenggu to give speeches in our school and local communities. Through the above activities, we could interact with more people, and promote the entrepreneurial spirit of Fenggu and the rice culture.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

We eat rice every day but we never paid attention to it. By gaining an in-depth understanding of Fenggu Company, we got to know the value of small businesses to the local community, the interaction between companies, and the essential role of these firms in our day-to-day life. We became grateful for those who contribute to the local economy. We also learned much about the culture and history of rice and the importance of rice to Taiwan.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 8571)

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