- Title: Syrian school students learn from home as coronavirus fears grow
- Date: 23rd March 2020
- Summary: DAMASCUS, SYRIA (MARCH 23, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF NINE YEAR OLD MAZEN AL-MHANNA GETTING SET UP TO DO SCHOOL LESSONS ONLINE MAZEN LOOKING AT SCREEN (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) NINE-YEAR-OLD SCHOOL BOY, MAZEN AL-MHANNA, SAYING: "I am used to studying all the time in school with my friends and with the teacher in the classroom and the whiteboard and sitting at my desk. Here there is a big difference: I am studying on the laptop. I feel that I am studying something that is not complete on laptop." VARIOUS OF MAZEN DOING A SCHOOL LESSON ONLINE VARIOUS OF BURAN AL-HOUSH, MAZEN'S MOTHER WATCHING TV (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) MAZEN'S MOTHER, BURAN AL-HOUSH, SAYING: "I was afraid and felt that now we began with the real stuff. But we have already been taking measures. We are already staying at home and trying to sanitise everything. I hope that things do not get worse and stay stable." DAMASCUS, SYRIA (MARCH 22, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PREPARATIONS FOR TEACHER TO BROADCAST PHYSICS LESSON LIVE FROM STUDIO TECHNICIANS IN STUDIO TEACHER BROADCASTING PHYSICS LESSON LIVE FROM STUDIO VARIOUS OF TECHNICIANS IN STUDIO WAEL SHAHIN, DIRECTOR OF SYRIAN EDUCATION CHANNEL AT HIS OFFICE PAPERS IN SHAHIN'S HANDS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) DIRECTOR OF SYRIAN EDUCATION CHANNEL, WAEL SHAHIN, SAYING: "Currently we are broadcasting twelve hours live. There are no recorded lessons. We had different programs before but now we are focusing on the lost lessons." SHAHIN READING PAPERS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) DIRECTOR OF SYRIAN EDUCATION CHANNEL, WAEL SHAHIN, SAYING: "We have teachers that are responsible for following up on the questions students post on social media in order to answer them later." SWITCHBOARD IN STUDIO EQUIPMENT IN STUDIO CAMERA IN STUDIO / TEACHER AND PRODUCTION STAFF LOOKING AT SCREEN
- Keywords: COVID-19 Syria coronavirus schools students study at home
- Reuters ID: LVA001C69WYMF
- Location: DAMASCUS, SYRIA
- City: DAMASCUS, SYRIA
- Country: Syria
- Duration: 00:03:43
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Story Text: Nine-year-old Syrian school boy Mazen al-Mhanna is learning a new way to do lessons out of the classroom, as Damascus closes schools in a bid to combat the spread of coronavirus.
Damascus announced a ban on public transport on Sunday (March 22) as it stepped up a lockdown introduced in recent days, including the closure of schools, parks, restaurants and various public institutions, as well as calling off army conscription.
Mazen uses a laptop to watch lessons and then sends questions to his teacher via social media. He told Reuters it's not the type of learning he is used to.
"I am used to study all the time in school with my friends and with the teacher in the classroom and the whiteboard and sitting at my desk. Here there is a big difference: I am studying on the laptop. I feel that I am studying something that is not complete on a laptop."
Syria announced on Sunday it had detected the first coronavirus case after weeks of rejecting opposition allegations that the disease had already reached a country with a wrecked health system and thousands of Iranian-backed militias and Shi'ite pilgrims.
Buran al-Housh, Mazen's mother, said she felt scared when she heard the news.
"I was afraid and felt that now we began with the real stuff. But we have already been taking measures. We already staying at home and trying to sanitise everything. I hope that things do not get worse and stay stable," she said.
The Syrian education ministry has started broadcasting lessons live from the Syrian education TV channel for up to 12 hours a day for those who do not have access to the internet or do not have computers.
Syria, already shattered by nine years of war, has banned entry for foreigners arriving from many countries hit by the coronavirus as part of widening measures to combat the pandemic.
U.N. officials and humanitarian workers fear a major outbreak in Syria could be particularly catastrophic.
The virus has been spreading in neighbouring countries.
(Production: Kinda Makieh, Firas Makdesi)
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