In Jerusalem, a Palestinian family under coronavirus lockdown

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – A Palestinian English teacher, Jizelle Sara, faces a double challenge while observing a partial lockdown in her Jerusalem home during the coronavirus crisis.

Not only does she have to find ways to keep her own children busy, but she has to ensure her pupils are up to date with schoolwork online.

“Teaching online is not easy at all since you have to connect and follow up with the girls remotely and not face-to-face – and besides, the kids are at home 24/7,” said Sara, 42.

Like families staying at home all over the world as part of efforts to halt the spread of coronavirus, the Saras pass the time with their children with online worksheets, exercise, coloring books and computer games.

“You have to keep them busy all of the time,” said Sara, whose children are aged five, six and 11.

Sara’s husband, Victor, a receptionist at a hotel closed by the lockdown, sees a bright side.

“Today we are gathered all together as a family, which is a very positive thing, that the person stays and sees his children, plays with them and cares for them, when work would usually have unfortunately taken us away from our family,” said Victor, 41.

“I think we are stronger than corona. Everyone can be stronger than corona,” said Victor. “Of course there is some boredom, but we shall overcome this boredom and overcome this with good health and peace.”

Israel has reported more than 4,000 coronavirus infections and 15 deaths. Authorities have tightened a partial lockdown, requiring citizens to stay within 100 meters (110 yards) of home and setting sanctions for defying rules.

In the Palestinian territories, 108 cases and one death have been confirmed.

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