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A: Headline

Pre-Reading Activities

A: What do you think?

Part One:
The statements below talk about the roles of men and women in society. Read them and choose one answer for each statement.

1. Only a man can be a firefighter. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
2. Only a woman can be a nurse. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
3. Only a man can be a doctor. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
4. Only a man can be a police officer. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
5. Only a woman can teach or look after young children. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
6. Only a man can be an astronaut. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
7. Only a man can be a builder. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
8. Only a man can be a football player. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
9. Only a woman can be a supermodel. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure
10. Only a man can be Santa Claus. a. Agree b. Disagree c. Unsure

Part Two:
a. Now compare your answers with those of other students. Do you agree or disagree? Give reasons for your answers.

b. Answer this question in pairs:
What has influenced your thinking about the roles of men and women?(Choose one or more of these answers.)

i. Watching the behavior of my parents and / or grandparents.
ii. My religious beliefs.
iii. Watching people (both men and women) in the community.
iv. The media (newspaper, television, radio)
v. My education.
vi. Other (your own answer)

B: Make a list

Today's articles discuss discrimination. Discrimination is the act of treating one person or a group of people differently (usually worse) than another person or group.

1. In groups of four make a list of all the ways a person could be discriminated against.
(If you have time, tell the other members of your group when you believe that you were discriminated against.)
2. Now as a class combine all your ideas (by writing them on the board).

Reading Activities

You are going to divide into two groups (A and B). Each group will read one article about Father Christmas / Santa Claus.

Worksheet for Student A

A: Headline

Read Article One quickly and decide which of the headlines is the right one for Article One.

Headline 1: Female reindeer carry Father Christmas around the world in one night
Headline 2: Shops to sell Mother Christmas suits
Headline 3: EU to change rules and give Santa a female partner
Headline 4: There's no need for Mother Christmas

Article One
BRUSSELS Thursday October 25 (Reuters) - Father Christmas does not need a ''Mother Christmas'' partner under European Union sex equality rules, the European Commission has ruled. It rejected as a "marketing prank'' what it said was a claim by British retailer Woolworths Group that it had to sell Mother Christmas suits alongside Father Christmas outfits to satisfy Santa sex equality clauses in EU legislation. "EU rules aim to prevent discrimination against female employees at work,'' spokesman Andrew Fielding said Wednesday. He said that the EU's executive arm, often berated for meddling too much in citizens' lives, would not be breaking down sexual stereotypes by giving Santa a female partner. He also noted that reindeer portrayed as pulling Santa's sleighs were all female -- male reindeer lose their antlers before the winter while females keep them until the spring. He quoted an Alaskan state government office as once having said that only females would be able to drive a fat "guy in a velvet suit around the world in one night and not get lost.''

Article © 2001 Reuters Limited. Lesson © 2001 www.english-to-go.com

marketing prank- a joke for the purpose of getting free advertising
clause- a single statement in a legal document
executive arm- the part of a group that has the power to carry out rulings and laws
berated- to be spoken to angrily
meddle- to take part in things or private matters that have nothing to do with you

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