Return to the  small farmer period in Shezi Island


    Fuan Elemantary School was founded in April 1922. It's originally the branch campus of Shezi Elemantary School. Until May 1946, it became Taipei County Fuan Elemantary School. Under the Japanese Government rules, the school had only from first to fourth grades.Students had to go to Shezi Elemantary School when they were over fifth grades.

Xizhoudi Campus of Shezi Elementary School during the Japanese rule,
the predecessor of Fuan Elementary School

" Grandpa, What did Fuan Elementary School  look like when you were young? How many people are there?"
"Every grade has a class, some have 22 students, some are 17-8, and that's it, so the four grades in the school add up to a total of 80 students."
"What was different about school equipment at that time?"
"Of course, the equipment was much worse. Now you see, your school has everything and you need to use, for example: textbooks, reference books, libraries, computers.At that time,it was much worse than now,only teachers have textbooks, first-grade and the second grade textbooks taught Japanese, Mathematics, Mathematics, Mathematics, Mathematics, Geography, History, and Art. The most important thing is "Self-cultivation" What is it? I will write it for you."

"Self-cultivation" textbook during the Japanese rule

"Former morals, the current college students and middle school students are much worse than before. The culture, personality, and politeness are better in the past. You see, some students of XX seem to be older than their parents by bus. I did n’t see anyone seated, and I did n’t stand up to let the elderly, children and women sit. It wasn't before. When we saw the elderly and children, we absolutely had to stand up. Slimming is what are you now called, citizens? Mandarin, mathematics, history, geography, and self-cultivation are most important in textbooks. Why? I have n’t learned yet. Before you can learn, you have to ask for self-cultivation. Beginning in life and work, you need to be polite, polite, and self-cultivation. All these are in self-cultivation. Well, there is no such subject now. What kind of citizen are you now? That ’s it. There is no such thing now. There is no such subject now. It used to be more important to have a self-cultivation.""
"Was the school teacher strict at that time?"
"Yes, very strict."
"How is that for you?"
"It's good for me, but I once washed the sputum canister and it was not clean, he said: No! The whole was washed again. Grandpa washed it and stood there for an hour."
"So do n’t you think it ’s disgusting to wash that?"
"It's disgusting (smiling and shaking his head), some of them smell so heavy, anyway, so dirty!"
"Because I heard it was disgusting!"
"Yeah, you think so too."
"Was the school teacher at that time Japanese or Taiwanese?"
"Usually a Taiwanese and a Japanese are in the same school. When I was studying, the teacher in the first and second grades was Mr. Li, the teacher in the third grade was Mr. Xu, and the teacher in the fourth grade changed to a Japanese. It ’s called Mr. Sato. After the fifth grade, we got the Shezi Elementary School."
"If students do wrong things, how do teachers punish them?"
"The punishment is to punish the station, standing there for an hour, can't move! And the strictest thing is, you have to hold a basin in your hand, you ca n’t put it on the ground, you know? In addition, the students were scolded by the teacher. The worst thing was that the students would be beaten with the ruler."
"I heard that if a student is beaten by that teacher with that ruler, his palms will become more and more red."
"Right ~ Use this short ruler to beat your palm (demonstration of holding a ruler of about 20 cm), and the most serious punishment is spanking. Boy, boy ~ (girl students laughed together)"
"Was there any difference between the teacher at that time and the current one?"
"Before it was imperialism, do you know what an empire is? What used to be the emperor's empire is now different, now it is democratic. Can you understand? Now it has become liberal, and the people are more free. In the past, imperialism could be beaten and punished without any problems. The teacher would not be challenged by parents like this.That won't work now, you have better luck, born at this time."
"Grandpa, what is your favorite teacher's name? do you remember?"
"I still remember the teacher I like. His name is Sato, as I said just now, he taught us in the fourth grade, Sato coniigi, Japanese."

Teachers of Shezi Elementary School during the Japanese occupation

"Why do you like him?"
"He is more polite, he does not look very fierce, everyone likes him more."
"Do you still contact your classmates?"
"Yes, there is also a classmate named Chen. From the first year to the fourth year, we are all at the same table. He sits on one side and I sit on the other side. But his family is relatively poor, and sometimes I have no money to buy reference books or whatever, I will share with him. I still have contact with him now."
"Was the student good at that time? Will you study hard?"
"There are many well-behaved students, generally well-behaved. Why? Teachers in the Japanese occupation period are stricter, so they dare not break the law. It seems that there is not even a thief. At that time, it does not matter that the house is not closed at night. There is no thief who dares to come in. There is no such thing as the robber."

Historical classroom situation in the period of Japanese rule

"How did Shezi District look like when you were young?"
"Oh, the environment. In the past, most of the Shezi areas were mainly agricultural, did you know agriculture? They are vegetable fields, some of which are sowing, planting and plowing. Most of the travels are made by boats. Before, there were no trucks, cars, or motorcycles. They weren't even bicycles. It was said that only rich people have bicycles."
"What do you study in Japan?"
"I ’m not studying art in studying abroad, I ’m studying business management, you know? Business management."
"What did you play after class when grandpa was a kid?"
"When I was a kid, I had to go fishing by myself (the students exclaimed), because there used to be many fish in the Danshui River and Keelung River. The Limin people eat more river water, but our family eats groundwater because the school has a well."
"I envy you all!"
"Hey ~ no tap water before, you know? There are no cars, motorcycles, or buses."
"Go to the well to pick up water after class. There are fishing, catching crabs, and watching other people doing dramas, and there are also puppet shows. In the past, we invited a teacher from an art gallery to teach and play drums, not a Taiwanese opera, but Nanguan, Fuanli (Xizhoudi) It is Beiguan, we are Nanguan here, and there are Taiwanese operas, and Xiafuan (XiaXishawei) teaches Taiwanese operas."

After the class, help to carry water

"When Grandpa was young, did you help with the housework?"
"Yes, I said that it used to be really bitter. My grandfather has 48,500 square meters of land, which is relatively rich, so the house I showed you just now is relatively large. My grandfather is very strict, and I have helped him in the vegetable field and work until the graduation since the third grade."
"In the fifth and sixth grades, everyone walks to the Shezi Elementary School. At that time, there were no bicycles or buses. They all walked for 40 minutes to 1 hour to the Shezi Elementary School. They came back after school. Everyone was barefoot, no shoes to wear, 80 of 100 students were bare . Only the New Year, going to tour, and sightseeing outside, there are cloth shoes that can be worn, then dare not wear shoes at other times, shoes are very expensive!"
"Some people do n’t have the money to buy cloth shoes. Not only that, they only have rice and no side dishes for their daily lunch. Some have no rice and bring two cakes, so there is only one egg in the bento, fried or salted, and they are very happy! Sometimes there are only about 40 peanuts and a large bowl of rice, then we are very happy. Some of them have preserved vegetables, and people who have no money do n’t even have anything to match. If they have rice, they will be happy. People used to eat sweet potatoes before, did you know? People eat only one meal of white rice a day, and the rest eats whole grains. That ’s how it used to be."

Floor plan of Xizhoudi Campus during the Japanese occupation period (hand-painted by Mr. Hong Yaoping)

"I told you just now that there is only one toilet in the warehouse. One side is for female students and the other is for male students. There is a compartment for female students. There is no compartment for male students, only a drain. The location of the toilet is opposite the small temple."
"Did all compartments have doors?"
"Of course, there are doors for female students, but no for male students."
"Then there are things in the warehouse, such as: textbooks, ropes for tug of war, and big balls made of cloth, the things that are used in sports games, the most other things are wall charts, now you do n’t have wall charts, there were wall charts before, wall charts are to teach students Yes, it ’s bigger, like this (pointing to the painting on the wall behind). At that time, if you want to teach geography and history, just pick it up and hang it over there to show it to the students, you know? It's called a flip chart."

Geography classroom situation in the period of Japanese rule

"But when I was in my 30s, I painted wall charts of the Taipei Education Bureau. I painted a lot, and it was printed a lot for all schools.Then there are two classrooms and one office."

Situational picture of the gate of Xizhoudi Campus during the Japanese occupation (Hand-painted by Mr. Hong Yaoping)

"This gate, this ladder, the school's land is relatively high, this road is relatively low, only about seven or eight steps can go up. My house is on the opposite side. I can go in and out every day. Not only that, I have to pick up water for my mother every day. Go to this well here and pick back water. Most people pick river water and eat river water.There are two classrooms, next to this is the office, here are two dormitory, where the teacher lives, the environment is like this."

"Grandpa, what encouragement do you have for current students?"
"Yes, the words to encourage you are very long, hey ~ a lot, I will tell you. Most of you now have no troubles other than studying hard. I just said that the former students are very bitter, money troubles, life goods troubles. Taking clothes as an example, a family has five brothers. Mostly, there are 6 or more than 10 brothers, and the larger ones will be exchanged for the smaller ones."
"Is it too small for the next one?"
"Hey ~ That is to say, the clothes will not be thrown away until they are worn. But it doesn't have to be like this now. There are too many clothes one can wear."
"Let me give you words of encouragement. Do n’t worry about money and work now. Your parents are all rich enough to invest in you. You do n’t have any troubles outside of school, so you have to go up to high school , To universities, and to research institutes. After graduation, you can solicit public opinion for our village, express opinions to the government for your father, mother, grandpa, and grandma, and fight for your rights. Not only that, but also for the country and society, OK?"
"Thank you grandpa for accepting our interview. If there is any need for our help, please tell us and we will do our best. We will also study hard, please rest assured."
"Good ~ thank you all."

Reference source:
Alumni Video of the 60th Anniversary of Fu'an Elementary School(Hong Yao-Ping). Personal interview. 2005.
Shezi Culture and Education Foundation."2000 Discover Shezi Island Activity Manual", 2000.
Taiwan e-Learning & Digital Archives Program. "Business photo gallery and amateur works during the Japanese rule." [Online]


  • Q1. What is different / same as before? A: In the past, it was difficult to study. There was neither convenient transportation nor a perfect education environment. In recent years, the arrival of technology has enabled us to enjoy a sound teaching environment and activities. The only thing that is the same is that the attitudes of the teachers to teach attentively, no matter at what time, have not changed.
  • Q2. Is there anything you think is good or bad? A: The reading environment is getting better and better, but the local environment is getting worse. What original natural resources are getting less and less. Fortunately, everyone still does their best to maintain and become a good teaching environment and a good living environment .