Fashion and the English Language

August 15, 2012

Lynn ElHarake, Fulbright English Teaching Assistants (ETA) to Malaysia, February 2011, with a student at The Muslim Girls' Fashion Club charity show in Terengganu. Lynn ElHarake, Fulbright English Teaching Assistants (ETA) to Malaysia, February 2011, with a student at The Muslim Girls' Fashion Club charity show in Terengganu. As a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) in Malaysia, Lynn ElHarake faced the challenge of making the English language learning process interesting for her students. So she decided a good solution would be to merge her interests in fashion with English lessons.

“We hosted a charity that was organized by the club that I started at the school early this school year, The Muslim Girls' Fashion Club,” says Lynn. “The Show raised over 1200 MYR for needy members of our school.

“The members of the Muslim Girls’ Fashion Club collected outfits for the show and chose one model for each outfit. Outfits were from a number of sources. Some were sent from the USA after being collected from countries all over the world while some outfits were designed or tailored based on sketches drawn by the student. Other designs were put together from available clothing and material in order to create a desired look.”

Lynn’s students practiced their English language skills while reading and listening throughout the preparation for and during the charity show. In addition, the program educated non-Muslim students from visiting schools about Muslims—particularly Muslim Women—in other countries around the world.

“The event was EXTREMELY successful in its charitable intentions, as well as in promotion of the English language and bringing students from ETAs' schools together,” says Lynn. “There were over 600 people in attendance, including 13 ETAs, many who brought students to the show with them.”

Lynn’s experience exposed her to new cultures and challenged her creativity. The program brought students from all over the state of Terengganu together, facilitating interaction between schools and exposing them to native English speakers. It also provided the members of the Muslim Girls’ Fashion Club with an opportunity to showcase the products of their work.

Lynn’s experience exposed her to new cultures and challenged her creativity. Fulbright ETA Program offers similar opportunities in over 60 countries around the world.