The Reading / Listening - Women's Studies - Level 4

A school in Canada has been criticized online for its women's studies course. Critics thought it had sexist subjects that were unfit for women in the 21st century. These included 'polite conversation,' dinner party etiquette, and 'nail application skills'. There was also a course on how to "enhance your style…face and body shape". The course did also have lessons on web design, reproductive health, the role of women in history, and beauty in the media.



A leading critic was actress Siobhan Bryn. She wrote: "This is unbelievably sexist. Women's studies is not fashion and putting on a lunch." She said the course looked like it was from the 1950's. Another critic said it was very "offensive and disrespectful". The school has now removed the subjects. A spokesman said: "It looks like we're supporting stereotyping girls….We want [our kids] to have a positive image and build self-esteem,…to analyze things critically."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Women's Studies - Level 5 or  Women's Studies - Level 6

Sources
  • http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4342910/High-school-offers-polite-conversation-classes-girls.html
  • http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-39348155
  • http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/clyde-women-studies-pembina-school-1.4034711


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. Critics thought it
  2. unfit for
  3. dinner party
  4. how to
  5. lessons
  6. reproductive
  7. the role
  8. beauty in
  1. enhance your style
  2. of women in history
  3. on web design
  4. had sexist subjects
  5. the media
  6. etiquette
  7. women in the 21st century
  8. health

Paragraph 2

  1. A leading critic was
  2. This is unbelievably
  3. looked like it was from
  4. The school has now
  5. stereotyping
  6. have a positive
  7. build self-
  8. analyze things
  1. girls
  2. esteem
  3. removed the subjects
  4. critically
  5. actress Siobhan Bryn
  6. the 1950's
  7. image
  8. sexist

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

A school in Canada has been (1) ___________________ for its women's studies course. Critics thought it had sexist subjects (2) ___________________ for women in the 21st century. These included 'polite conversation,' dinner (3) ___________________, and 'nail application skills'. There was (4) ___________________ how to "enhance your style…face and body shape". The course did also have (5) ___________________ design, reproductive health, the role of women in history, and (6) ___________________.

A leading (7) ___________________ Siobhan Bryn. She wrote: "This is unbelievably sexist. Women's studies is not fashion and (8) ___________________." She said the course looked like it was (9) ___________________. Another critic said it was very "offensive and disrespectful". The school (10) ___________________ the subjects. A spokesman said: "It looks like we're supporting (11) ___________________ ….We want [our kids] to have a positive image and (12) ___________________,…to analyze things critically."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

AschoolinCanadahasbeencriticizedonlineforitswomen'sstudiescours
e.Criticsthoughtithadsexistsubjectsthatwereunfitforwomeninthe21stc
entury.Theseincluded'politeconversation,'dinnerpartyetiquette,and
'nailapplicationskills'.Therewasalsoacourseonhowto"enhanceyourst
yle…faceandbodyshape".Thecoursedidalsohavelessonsonwebdesig
n,reproductivehealth,theroleofwomeninhistory,andbeautyinthe
media.AleadingcriticwasactressSiobhanBryn.Shewrote:"Thisisunbe
lievablysexist.Women'sstudiesisnotfashionandputtingonalunch."Sh
esaidthecourselookedlikeitwasfromthe1950's.Anothercriticsaiditwa
svery"offensiveanddisrespectful".Theschoolhasnowremovedthesub
jects.Aspokesmansaid:"Itlookslikewe'resupportingstereotypinggirl
s….Wewant[ourkids]tohaveapositiveimageandbuildself-esteem,…t
oanalyzethingscritically."

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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