Wearing masks, children returned to primary schools in some parts of Germany on Monday.

Primary schools and nurseries in more than half of Germany's 16 states reopened on Monday after two months of closure amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The country's health ministry said it was important for schools to reopen because younger children in particular benefit from learning together in groups.

The move comes despite signs that the decline in COVID-19 case numbers is flattening out again and even rising in some areas.

Unions have called for teachers and school workers to be moved into a higher priority group for vaccinations, an idea that government officials have said they will consider.