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Sunday, August 30, 2009

In one class

Last Thursday, my Intermediate 1 class discussed “Reaching for the Stars”. To lead the students to the main topic, the book provided a picture: a quite fat female teenager who has short straight hair is imagining to have a tall slim body and long wavy hair (typical ‘beautiful girl’ according to many advertisements on printed as well as electronic media.)

Here is the way I lead the discussion:
Teacher (T): “What do you see in this picture?”
Students (Ss): “A girl…”
T: “Can you describe what this girl looks like?”
Ss: “She is fat, plain, and she has short straight hair.”
T: “What is she doing in this picture?”
Ss: “She is dreaming of having a perfect body, just like the girl in the bubble…”
T: “Describe the girl in the bubble, please…”
Ss: “She is tall, slim, pretty, and she has long wavy hair.”
T: “Why is she dreaming like that?”
Ss: “Because she thinks that she is ugly.”
T: “Why do you think that way?”
Ss: “Because she doesn’t have a boyfriend, perhaps?”
T: “Why do you think perhaps she doesn’t have a boyfriend?”
Ss: “Because no boy is attracted to her.”
T: ”So, what kind of girl is attractive?”
Ss: “Just like the girl in the bubble…”
T: “Why do you think this girl is pretty?”
Ss: “Because she is pretty…”
T: “You don’t answer my question well. What made you think she is pretty?”
Ss: “?!@#$%^&*???~!@#$%^??…….”

And this made me ‘preach’ about the ugly impacts of watching television.
 Advertisements on television with their so-called beautiful women (‘beautiful’ according to the producers) have magically shaped people—mostly teenagers about what ‘beautiful’ is.
 Advertisements have created mass culture about many aspects in our life (including to be “true women” so that they will be wanted and needed by men or parents-in-laws to be)

Due to this, many people—mostly women and teenagers lose their being critical.
My suggestion to my students, “Don’t watch television!”
PT56 23.33 290809

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