1 Belinda and Farnsworth talk about the increase in the number of women who work and the increase in the number of men who want to be active parents. One result of these social changes is that new types of arrangements have to be worked out for child care. Read the following problem situations. Discuss a possible solution to each problem with a partner, preferably someone of the opposite sex. Make notes about your solutions.

1 A divorced father has custody of three young children. When they get sick and cannot go to school, he has to use his own sick days – days that employees are allowed to take off if they are sick – so that he can stay home from work and take care of them.

Possible solution: oojd allow e-mwith cb’ildron a ocrfa’m mmb&r

of ЧісЛс child plan’d’ pe-r near in addHion fo fhe-ir own pc-rSonaf Qck. days._________________________________________________

2 A company often asks its employees to do overtime, that is work longer than the normal workday. One employee doesn’t want to do overtime because she wants to spend evenings with her children.

Possible solution:__________________________________________________

3 A young father would like to spend lime with his newborn baby. He requests a six- month leave of absence without pay. The company tells him that they cannot guarantee that he will get his job back after the leave.

Possible solution:__________________________ _______________________

4 An employee has a new baby. She needs to make more money so that she can afford child care because she and her husband both work.

Possible solution:_______________________________________________

Share your solutions with the class. Are other students’ solutions similar to or different from yours and your partners?


1 Look at the graph below. It shows Lhe “gender gap” in pay that is one of the most important issues for working women today.

I960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995

Source: From p. 258, Michael Hughes, Carolyn J. Kroehler and James W. Vander Zanden, Sociology: The Core, 6e, © 2002. Reprinted with permission of The McGraw-Hill Companies.


Work with a partner. Take turns describing what the graph in step 1 shows about:

1 the difference between men’s and women’s salaries

2 how this difference is changing over time

You can use these sentence structures to discuss the graph:

There was a

big / significant

increase / rise decrease

in X




rose / increased fell / decreased



Compared to DATE,

women / men



З I What do you think are some factors that cause women to earn less than men?

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