In this lesson, we want to focus on telephoning skills as these are the life skills our students often struggle with, but they need them very much when they use English. We also look at the phenomenon of telephone phobia (aka phone anxiety) which is an issue many people need to deal with and may especially be valid for learners of foreign languages. On top of that, our lesson plan includes a set of common telephone English phrases and of course a couple of roleplays to practise them.
B1 / Intermediate60 minStandard LessonPrintable & Digital$6 Plan
The lesson starts with a couple of standard questions related to telephoning to introduce the topic and get students engaged. The last question concerns phone anxiety and is related to the video.
VIDEO – PHONE ANXIETY
The video section includes 3 parts: vocabulary (phrasal verbs), video, discussion. First, ask your students to fill in the phrasal verbs with prepositions. They have the definitions of those phrasals provided to help them choose the right preposition. All of these phrasal verbs come from the short video so let them watch it and check their answers. Afterwards, play the video again so that they can focus more on the content so that they don’t have a lot of problems with the language.
The last part is a discussion. Let your students discuss the provided questions, what will allow them to reflect on the content of the video and express their opinions.
TELEPHONE ENGLISH PHRASES
In the next exercise, your students will discover some common telephone English phrases and learn the target language they will need for the roleplays. In this task, students need to categorize the phrases they get according to their functions.
Cut out two sets of phrases for pairs of students (available on page 3 of the Teacher’s Version below). Each student should get one set and put the phrases there in suitable categories. This way they will have half of their categories completed and to get the second part they need to share and check their partners’ handout. As a result, your students will be equipped with 20 different telephone English phrases grouped by their functions.
PRACTISING TELEPHONE ENGLISH PHRASES – ROLEPLAYS
The last activity brings together all that your students have learnt so far on the lesson. They will have to put those phrasal verbs and telephone English phrases into practice by role playing two scenarios. There’s plenty of information provided in their role cards so let them absorb it before starting the roleplays. The best way to do those roleplays is to make them as real as possible:
- Put your students in pairs and ask them to actually call each other and do the task over the phone – ask half of your students to leave the classroom and call their partners.
- Alternatively, ask your students to sit back to back so that they can’t see each other. This way at least your students can’t rely on body language and need to communicate using only their voice – just like when they talk on the phone.
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