COVID-19 and the new normal: Back-to-school tips for stressed parents, kids

Tips for a smooth transition back to school amid ever-present fears about COVID-19. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 08 September 2020

COVID-19 and the new normal: Back-to-school tips for stressed parents, kids

DUBAI: After months of homeschooling and summer holidays, the shift back to school in some countries - the UAE for one - can be one of emotional turmoil for kids and parents alike. Reem Shaheen, clinical director at BE Psychology Center in Dubai, shares her tips for a smooth transition back to school amid ever-present fears about COVID-19.

Information

Contact the school and other parents to make sure you have as much information about changes and any new protocols that have been put in place so you can explain it clearly to your child, to avoid any surprises or shock when they return to the classroom.

Communication

To ease any anxiety, call an informal family meeting to talk through a typical day at school and allow your children an opportunity to voice their concerns and ask questions.




It is especially important your child understands the importance of the different health procedures in place. (Shutterstock)

Safety first

Review child safety and health procedures in place at school and gently discuss with your child, a simple quiz can be a good way to ensure it’s all understood. It is especially important your child understands the importance of good hand-washing practices and, above all, never to share a masks with friends.

Prepare for change

Remember the first few weeks are always an adjustment. There might be changes that will need to be made at home and at school as we learn this new way of schooling, so speak to the kids about this possibility. Also be prepared for the possibility that children may have to return home suddenly if a positive COVID-19 case is detected at their school — keep an open line of communication with your child through any period of upheaval.




There might be changes that will need to be made at home and at school. (Shutterstock)

Adjust habits

End summer holiday habits such as extended screen time and later bed times. Explain the new schedule to your child but reassure them that there will still be space to enjoy downtime.

Simplify things

Do not over schedule your child. It may take time to adjust to full-time schooling so keep after-school sports and activities, and any extra tuition, to a minimum to start.


French-Tunisian star Sonia Ben Ammar joins the cast of ‘Scream 5’

Updated 20 September 2020

French-Tunisian star Sonia Ben Ammar joins the cast of ‘Scream 5’

DUBAI:Up-and-coming French-Tunisian singer, model and actor Sonia Ben Ammar has joined the cast of “Scream 5,”  it’s been revealed this week.

 According to Variety, production on Spyglass Media and Paramount Pictures’ upcoming relaunch of the  famous horror film franchise is set to begin later this month.

Filmmaking duo Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, who are behind “Ready or Not,” are directing the forthcoming film.

The first “Scream” film was released in 1996, well before Ben Ammar was even born.  A smash hit upon its debut, the movie helped to revive the horror genre, becoming the highest-grossing slasher movie of all-time. 

This will be Paris-born Ammar’s first high-profile Hollywood gig as an actress. She along with other young franchise newcomers will be joining returning cast members David Arquette, Courteney Cox and Neve Campbell, who are all reprising their iconic roles as Dewey Riley, Gale Weathers and Sidney Prescott.

Plot details for the new film, set to debut in theaters on Jan. 14, 2022, are still under wraps,  so it is not yet known what role the French-Arab star will be taking on.

“I’m SCREAMing of excitement!! (sic)” wrote the 21-year-old on Instagram, announcing the news to her 730,000 social media followers. “Incredibly grateful to be part of one of my favorite franchises. 2nd photo is my face when I got the call lol (sic),” she captioned a screenshot of Variety’s article announcing the news and a blurry snap of her clearly overjoyed. 

However, it’s not the multi-hyphenate model’s first foray into the film industry.

Ben Ammar, who is the daughter of Tunisian film director Tarek Ben Ammar and actress Beata, previously starred in Guillaume Canet’s French-language film “Jappeloup” as well as the stage musical “1789: Les Amants de la Bastille.”

She’s also appeared in several music videos, including “Drivin’ Thru the Night” by DJ Petit Biscuit, as well as clips for her own singles, such as “Joyride” from her debut EP.

In addition to music, Ben Ammar is also a rising model, and has worked for many major brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Miu Miu, Carolina Herrera and Chanel, among other prestigious fashion houses.