At 60, Emirati lady takes coronavirus in stride with smart learning - GulfToday

At 60, Emirati lady takes coronavirus in stride with smart learning


Aysha Obaid Ibrahim Maleih browses a mobile device at her residence in Sharjah.

Mervat Al Khateeb, Staff Reporter

There is no doubting the fact that normal life has turned turtle due to the coronavirus. Among its many consequences, it has irritated many who are confined to their homes, put curbs on social interaction, led to mental health issues, thrown enterprise out of gear, and nixed travel and holiday plans. However, few people, like senior Emirati lady Aysha Obaid Ibrahim Maleih, can turn a crisis into an advantage. Aysha, who is over 60 years old, like many of her peers, has successfully challenged the coronavirus, thanks to her love for education and services of Sharjah Education Council.

Circumstances like marriage, childbearing, and home responsibilities prevented Aysha from going to school and learning during her childhood and youth years. But, she remained hopeful.

She finally got an opportunity to fulfil her dream when she joined Al Noor Centre of the Sharjah Education Council, which provides education services for citizens and (some) female residents to eradicate illiteracy.


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Aysha joined regular classes at the centre, which also provides buses, books and school supplies for all. This experience made her very happy, as she began reading and learning mathematics, and most importantly, perusing the Holy Qur’an.

When the coronavirus broke out, the centre stopped functioning for a short period like other regular schools. However, it later resumed with a suitable proposal for everyone, which is distant online education.

Emirati-Children Children fiddle with a mobile device. File

This put Aysha in a quandary, who was a stranger to the world of electronic communication. She felt her dream of reading and writing would be ruined. She did not know how to deal with the smart devices and complicated technologies used for distance learning. She hesitated a little but finally decided to give them a try.

“Keep trying and you will succeed,” Aysha happily tells Al Khaleej newspaper, a sister publication of Gulf Today, while talking about her experience, which has now opened new horizons for her. It has brought her closer to the new generation especially her grandchildren with whom she now communicates using smart devices because of the online distance learning.

Aysha Obaid has expressed her gratitude to His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.

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