Sharjah: The Child Safety Department (CSD) in Sharjah, an affiliate of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs (SCFA), is helping raise awareness on the crucial issue of bullying through a series of interactive workshops at the ongoing 13th Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF) at Expo Centre Sharjah.
Led by social worker Takia Yahya Ahmed, the workshops — held in partnership with Dubai Foundation for Women and Children for grades 3-7 students — are “imparting effective strategies in preventing instances of bullying and offering constructive approaches in responding to the situation through positive thinking, empathy and self-composure”.
Discussions also revolve around motives and causes behind bullying, taking empathy and being mindful of other person’s feelings, whether they are the victim or the bully. Ahmed added, when confronted by a bully, it is best to “remain calm and composed, in order to respond in an appropriate manner”.
Meanwhile, Beirut-based publisher Dar Al Saqi is raising awareness among children about the need to challenge stereotypes and value compassion.
Titles displayed by the publisher provide early education on socially conscious topics, including The Mystery of the Glass Ball by Syrian author Maria Daadoush that teaches children to embrace cultural diversity. There is also The Red Line by Samar Mahfouz Barraj aimed at instilling the concept of body autonomy in children at an early age. While Egyptian author Samar Taher’s book I Dream of Becoming a Doctor is part of a series by Dar Al Saqi that encourages children to think outside the box when planning their future careers.
Young girls on a school field trip recently had a therapeutic early-morning ‘Yoga Balance’ session. Guided by professional instructors, the girls performed ‘animal yoga’ — a special routine for young ‘yogis’ with an interesting twist where the positions resemble four-legged, winged and slithering creatures in the wild. The routine is designed to provide an outlet for children’s energy during a sober meditative practise. .
Throughout the festival, which runs until May 22, visitors can enjoy physical development workshops, including boxing, choreography and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) sessions.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) also take centre stage at SCRF. NFT artist Magda Malkoun provided a step-by-step guide on how to mint NFTs, while breaking down the various terms associated with the world of digital assets in clear language at the workshop titled, How to Become an NFT Artist.
Malkoun explained how to create a crypto wallet, trade in the virtual marketplace, design a digital artwork using the software MediBang Paint, ensure online safety while minting NFTs, and other tips and tricks to ease the entry of artists into the dynamic digital marketplace.
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Entry is free at Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival.
Catch it until Sunday, May 22, at Expo Centre Sharjah.
Opening hours: Monday to Thursday (9am-8pm); Friday (4pm-9pm); Saturday and Sunday (9am-9pm).