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World comes to Elida at International Fair PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, November 07, 2013 9:00 PM


Staff Writer

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ELIDA — On Thursday morning, 28 University of Northwestern Ohio college students from 12 different countries hosted an International Fair for Elida Elementary students in the Elida Fieldhouse.

Groups of kindergarten, second-, third- and fourth-grade students spent time learning about the unique customs and cultures at 16 different booths. Countries represented included Brazil, Colombia, Croatia, England, France, Germany, New Zealand, Serbia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden and Vietnam.

There were also stations for international food, music and sports. UNOH currently has students from 40 states and 24 foreign countries.

Kindergartner Lacie Hawkey said learning about soccer and rugby from students from Brazil and England was cool.

“In rugby, they throw the ball underhanded,” Hawkey said. “German students showed us their money, Euros.”

The International Fair was an idea started after the UNOH international students visited different classrooms at Elida Elementary throughout the fall. Teachers in each of the classrooms loved the interaction between the younger children and students from another country.

College students Nadine Stonjek and Tom Borchard from Germany give fourth-grade students a lesson in their culture including football, where Franco Di Santo and Luca Caldirola are fan favorites and play for the German club Werder Bremen, and the Germans’ love of candies. Stonjek explained to the students that gummy bears are “very, very popular” in Germany.One of the learning objectives at the second-grade level is about culture, so this partnership is a great way for the students to meet one of their learning standards and actually meet college students from different countries.

UNOH freshman Viktoria Bogren, who is from Sweden, said it has been a great experience for college students to meet the grade school children and participate in their classes.

“The fair gives all of us the opportunity to get involved and share our cultures and commonalities,” Bogren said excitedly. Bogren likes living in the United States and says that everyone is very polite. She plans on returning to Sweden after completing her degree.

“It has been an amazing experience to be here,” Bogren said. “Now I have friends from all over the world.”


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