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Maine Chinese Conference at Husson University 

Thinking globally, acting locally–that was the theme of the annual Maine Chinese Conference at Husson University..

The two-day event brought together teachers, students, artists, even chefs.

The goal–to teach, and to learn, about the Chinese language and culture.

“We invite teachers from all over the state of Maine to teach Chinese or are interested in having Chines taught in their schools to come on Friday. And they learn Chinese language teaching best practices. They talk about what works in their classrooms and what doesn’t work,” said Elizabeth Chabe.

Jennifer DeCristafaro adopted her daughter from China…years later she penned the Lucky Bamboo Book of Crafts.

“It started out just doing projects with my daughter and with community groups. But as it’s grown I think learning about the world and different cultures and raising kids and teaching them in school to be world citizens is very very important,” said DeCristafaro.

James Kenny of the Confucius Classroom of Maine stressed the economic advantage of speaking Chinese.

“it really is the business of tomorrow will be in Chinese. It’s spoken by so many people in this world global community. And it will be important to produce students who can speak Chinese. And it will be a very handy thing to prouce a advary of students who can speak Chinese,” said Kenny.

23 schools in Maine offer Chinese language classes. Some students even get to visit China.

Now in its 11th year, organizers say the goal of the conference is simple: Build a strong relationship and incorporation between Maine and China.