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Local kids and 159 visiting Chinese students get a cultural lesson at Huntington Beach school

Huntington Beach Mayor Lyn Semeta joined children and staff at Hawes Elementary School on Friday in welcoming more than 150 visiting Chinese students and their teachers.

Semeta presented the 159 students and 24 chaperones from Tianjin with city pins as part of a third annual visit from a Chinese school group. The trips are designed for the visitors to learn about American culture and education and share their own culture with local students.

“The main purpose of this program is to introduce new cultures to students and have them experience interacting with others from a different part of the world,” Huntington Beach city spokeswoman Julie Toledo said in a statement.

The students Friday participated in recess, exchanged letters and gifts and painted positive words and messages on rocks for the school rock garden, which is part of Hawes’ Kindness Rocks Project.

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