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ESL / EFL Lesson Plan - Saudi Lingerie Stores - by Sean Banville

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Women Only To Sell Lingerie in Saudi (5th January, 2012)


 

Times are changing for women in Saudi Arabia’s lingerie shops. From today, only women will be able to work as sales assistants. This follows a decision made by King Abdullah in June 2011. An attempt to allow Saudi women to work in lingerie stores three years ago failed after complaints from top clerics, who said it was un-Islamic. The new law comes after a Facebook campaign by women who for decades have been embarrassed by having to deal with male store clerks. Many women preferred to wait and buy their underwear overseas rather than reveal their personal body sizes to men. Samar Mohammed told the BBC that she would often buy the wrong size “because I was sensitive about explaining what I wanted to a man”.


Another reason for implementing the new law is that it will create up to 40,000 jobs for Saudi women. A Ministry of Labor official stressed to the 7,300 shop owners affected that saleswomen must be Saudi citizens. Any store hiring foreign women will face penalties and fines. The kingdom's top religious leader Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Aziz al-Asheikh has warned shop owners that employing women is a "crime and prohibited by Islamic Sharia law". He said a lot of lingerie was bought by men for their wives, so the new regulation makes things worse. He stated: “A female employee standing face to face with a male customer without modesty or shame can lead to wrongdoing.” The ban on male staff will also start in cosmetics shops from July.


WARM-UPS

1. LINGERIE: Walk around the class and talk to other students about lingerie. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

changing times / lingerie / sales assistants / complaints / embarrassed / body sizes / new laws / citizens / penalties / prohibited / crimes / modesty / shame / wrongdoing

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. WOMEN ONLY: Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change and share again.

Women only…

Yes/No?

Why/not?

lingerie stores

 

 

parks

 

 

train carriages

 

 

gyms

 

 

schools

 

 

restaurants

 

 

4. STORES: Students A strongly believe women’s lingerie stores should be staffed by women only; Students B strongly believe not.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. EMBARRASSING: Rank these and share your rankings with your partner. Put the most embarrassing at the top. Change partners and share your rankings again.

  • buying underwear
  • making a mistake in English
  • walking into the wrong bathroom
  • spitting in someone’s face when talking
  • forgetting someone’s name
  • sweat showing through your clothes
  • Saying something bad about someone who hears what you said
  • waving to someone who wasn’t waving at you

6. EMBARRASSED: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘embarrassed’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

A new law in Saudi Arabia says women can sell lingerie only.

T / F

b.

The Saudi King decided to replace men with women in lingerie stores.

T / F

c.

Women bought underwear abroad due to male staff in Saudi shops.

T / F

d.

One woman bought the wrong size instead of giving her size to a man.

T / F

e.

Saudi hopes to create thousands of jobs for women in lingerie shops.

T / F

f.

Women from other countries will also be able to work in lingerie stores.

T / F

g.

Saudi’s top religious leader OK’d the new law allowing women to work.

T / F

h.

There will be no similar ban on men working in cosmetics stores.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

1.

times

a.

emphasized

2

follows

b.

tell

3.

attempt

c.

putting into effect

4.

rather than

d.

life

5.

reveal

e.

banned

6.

implementing

f.

effort

7.

stressed

g.

misconduct

8.

face

h.

comes after

9.

prohibited

i.

come up against

10.

wrongdoing

j.

instead of

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

Times are

a.

with male store clerks

2

complaints from

b.

things worse

3.

embarrassed by having to deal

c.

what I wanted

4.

reveal their personal

d.

new law

5.

I was sensitive about explaining

e.

and fines

6.

implementing the

f.

changing for women

7.

face penalties

g.

by Islamic Sharia law

8.

prohibited

h.

or shame

9.

the new regulation makes

i.

top clerics

10.

without modesty

j.

body sizes to men


 
 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

Times are (1) ____________ for women in Saudi Arabia’s lingerie shops. From today, only women will be (2) ____________ to work as sales assistants. This follows a decision made by King Abdullah in June 2011. An attempt to (3) ____________ Saudi women to work in lingerie stores three years ago failed after complaints from top clerics, who said it was un-Islamic. The new law comes after a Facebook campaign by women who for (4) ____________ have been embarrassed by having to deal with male store clerks. Many women (5) ____________ to wait and buy their underwear overseas rather than (6) ____________ their personal body sizes to men. Samar Mohammed told the BBC that she would often buy the (7) ____________ size “because I was (8) ____________ about explaining what I wanted to a man”.

 

 

 

wrong
decades
able
reveal
sensitive
changing
allow
preferred

Another reason for implementing the new law is that it will        (9) ____________ up to 40,000 jobs for Saudi women. A Ministry of Labor (10) ____________ stressed to the 7,300 shop owners affected that saleswomen must be Saudi citizens. Any store     (11) ____________ foreign women will face penalties and fines. The kingdom's top (12) ____________ leader Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Aziz al-Asheikh has warned shop owners that employing women is a "crime and (13) ____________ by Islamic Sharia law". He said a lot of lingerie was bought by men for their wives, so the new regulation makes things (14) ____________. He stated: “A female employee standing face to face with a male customer without modesty or (15) ____________ can lead to  (16) ____________.” The ban on male staff will also start in cosmetics shops from July.

 

 

religious
shame
official
wrongdoing
prohibited
create
worse
hiring

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

_____________________ for women in Saudi Arabia’s lingerie shops. From today, only women will be able to work as sales assistants. This follows a decision made by King Abdullah in June 2011. _____________________ Saudi women to work in lingerie stores three years ago failed after ________________________, who said it was un-Islamic. The new law comes after a Facebook campaign by women who for decades have been embarrassed by _____________________ male store clerks. Many women preferred to wait and buy their underwear overseas _____________________ personal body sizes to men. Samar Mohammed told the BBC that she would _____________________ size “because I was sensitive about explaining what I wanted to a man”.

Another _____________________ the new law is that it will create up to 40,000 jobs for Saudi women. A Ministry of Labor official stressed to the 7,300 _____________________ that saleswomen must be Saudi citizens. Any store hiring foreign women will _____________________. The kingdom's top religious leader Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Aziz al-Asheikh has warned shop owners that employing women is a "_____________________ Islamic Sharia law". He said a lot of lingerie was bought by men for their wives, so the new regulation makes things worse. He stated: “A female employee _____________________ with a male customer without modesty or shame can _____________________.” The ban on male staff will also start in cosmetics shops from July.

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘under’ and ‘wear’.

under

wear

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • times
  • allow
  • decades
  • wait
  • body
  • wrong
  • reason
  • stressed
  • hiring
  • crime
  • wives
  • cosmetics

LINGERIE SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about lingerie 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.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

LINGERIE DISCUSSION

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

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘lingerie’?

c)

What do you think of the new law?

d)

Does it matter if a man or woman sells lingerie?

e)

Are times changing for women?

f)

Are there occasions when you prefer a male or female sales assistant?

g)

Do you think there should be male-only and female-only stores?

h)

What other things should only men or women sell?

i)

What do you think of the fact that Saudi women waited until they went on vacation to buy underwear?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Will women sales assistants in lingerie shops mean women will soon be able to work in other areas in Saudi?

c)

Is it right that the sales assistant jobs are only for Saudi citizens?

d)

Would the best solution be for non-Saudi women to work as sales assistants?

e)

Have you ever been embarrassed about buying something?

f)

Is the Grand Mufti right in saying that now men will embarrass Saudi women when they buy lingerie for their wives?

g)

Do you think wrongdoing can occur in a lingerie store?

h)

How would this ban go down in your country?

i)

What questions would you like to ask a Saudi woman?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

(1) ____ are changing for women in Saudi Arabia’s lingerie shops. From today, only women will be able to work as sales assistants. This follows a decision made by King Abdullah in June 2011. An (2) ____ to allow Saudi women to work in lingerie stores three years ago failed after complaints (3) ____ top clerics, who said it was un-Islamic. The new law comes after a Facebook campaign by women who for (4) ____ have been embarrassed by having to deal with male store clerks. Many women preferred to wait and buy their underwear overseas rather than (5) ____ their personal body sizes to men. Samar Mohammed told the BBC that she would often buy the wrong size “because I was sensitive (6) ____ explaining what I wanted to a man”.

Another reason for (7) ____ the new law is that it will create up to 40,000 jobs for Saudi women. A Ministry of Labor official stressed to the 7,300 shop owners affected that saleswomen must be Saudi citizens. Any store hiring foreign women will (8) ____ penalties and fines. The kingdom's top religious leader Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Aziz al-Asheikh has warned shop owners that employing women is a "crime and (9) ____ by Islamic Sharia law". He said a lot of lingerie was bought by men for their wives, so the new regulation makes (10) ____ worse. He stated: “A female employee standing face to face with a male customer without (11) ____ or shame can lead to (12) ____.” The ban on male staff will also start in cosmetics shops from July.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

Clocks

(b)

Watches

(c)

Seconds

(d)

Times

2.

(a)

try

(b)

attempt

(c)

affront

(d)

effortless

3.

(a)

from

(b)

to

(c)

at

(d)

of

4.

(a)

decadence

(b)

decays

(c)

decades

(d)

decaff

5.

(a)

reveal

(b)

revue

(c)

revel

(d)

revolve

6.

(a)

from

(b)

about

(c)

on

(d)

as

7.

(a)

implementing

(b)

implement

(c)

implemented

(d)

implements

8.

(a)

head

(b)

skull

(c)

cheek

(d)

face

9.

(a)

prohibitive

(b)

prohibited

(c)

prohibition

(d)

prohibit

10.

(a)

thing

(b)

thingamajig

(c)

thingy

(d)

things

11.

(a)

modes

(b)

models

(c)

modesty

(d)

modestly

12.

(a)

wrongdoing

(b)

doing up

(c)

undoing

(d)

doing over

WRITING

Write about lingerie for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about this story. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. LINGERIE: Make a poster about lingerie. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. SHOPPING: Write a magazine article about having male-only or female-only stores. Include imaginary interviews with people who are for and against it.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to a Saudi lingerie store boss. Ask him/her three questions about the new decision to have only female employees in stores. Give him/her three of your opinions. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

T

c.

T

d.

T

e.

T

f.

F

g.

F

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

times

a.

life

2

follows

b.

comes after

3.

attempt

c.

effort

4.

rather than

d.

instead of

5.

reveal

e.

tell

6.

implementing

f.

putting into effect

7.

stressed

g.

emphasized

8.

face

h.

come up against

9.

prohibited

i.

banned

10.

wrongdoing

j.

misconduct

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

Times are

a.

changing for women

2

complaints from

b.

top clerics

3.

embarrassed by having to deal

c.

with male store clerks

4.

reveal their personal

d.

body sizes to men

5.

I was sensitive about explaining

e.

what I wanted

6.

implementing the

f.

new law

7.

face penalties

g.

and fines

8.

prohibited

h.

by Islamic Sharia law

9.

the new regulation makes

i.

things worse

10.

without modesty

j.

or shame

GAP FILL:

Women only to sell lingerie in Saudi

Times are (1) changing for women in Saudi Arabia’s lingerie shops. From today, only women will be (2) able to work as sales assistants. This follows a decision made by King Abdullah in June 2011. An attempt to (3) allow Saudi women to work in lingerie stores three years ago failed after complaints from top clerics, who said it was un-Islamic. The new law comes after a Facebook campaign by women who for (4) decades have been embarrassed by having to deal with male store clerks. Many women (5) preferred to wait and buy their underwear overseas rather than (6) reveal their personal body sizes to men. Samar Mohammed told the BBC that she would often buy the (7) wrong size “because I was (8) sensitive about explaining what I wanted to a man”.

Another reason for implementing the new law is that it will (9) create up to 40,000 jobs for Saudi women. A Ministry of Labor (10) official stressed to the 7,300 shop owners affected that saleswomen must be Saudi citizens. Any store (11) hiring foreign women will face penalties and fines. The kingdom's top (12) religious leader Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Aziz al-Asheikh has warned shop owners that employing women is a "crime and (13) prohibited by Islamic Sharia law". He said a lot of lingerie was bought by men for their wives, so the new regulation makes things (14) worse. He stated: “A female employee standing face to face with a male customer without modesty or (15) shame can lead to (16) wrongdoing.” The ban on male staff will also start in cosmetics shops from July.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - b

3 - a

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - a

8 - d

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

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