Sunday, 15 November 2009

How to make a telephone call (Elementary)

This is now superseded by this one:
http://acliltoclimb.blogspot.com/2010/11/how-to-make-telephone-call-games.html


Last amended on 15 Nov 2009 to add another matching game.

Do you have trouble making a telephone call in English? Do you get nervous when you don't understand the person on the other end? Are you familiar with most of  the basic telephone language? In this post, I will  try to help you improve your telephone skills by looking at the most common words and expressions used in telephone conversations followed by some practice. If you have any doubts, please don't hesitate to ask.

Watch this short video and see if you can understand some of the vocabulary used. Then, study the list below, and watch the video again, if necessary.


The problem facing learners in understanding telephone conversations, apart from a general weakness in listening skills, is that there are many ways of saying the same thing, and often, the learner gets confused. Here, I will explain some of the most common words and expressions which you should try to learn.

Then watch the video below, and try to fill in the gaps in the lyrics. After that, play the two matching games at the end. The first is a telephone conversation of someone making an appointment with her hairdresser. The second one is slightly more challenging. The conversation is in jumbled order. First, you'll have to match the dialogue, then put the conversation in the right order.

Crucial vocabulary

answer (to pick the phone up when it rings)
answering machine (a machine that answers your telephone and records messages that people leave for you)
busy (if someone's telephone is busy, they are using the phone when you try to call)
call (= ring, phone, telephone; make a call)
caller (the person making the call)
call back / phone back (to telephone someone again)
cell phone (= mobile phone)
cordless phone (a phone which works without a cable connecting the phone to the electric supply)
dial (to press the buttons on the phone to make a call)
dial tone (the sound which the phone makes when you pick the phone up. Note that most modern phones no longer have this.)
directory / telephone directory / phone book (a book containing names, addresses and phone numbers)
hang up (to end a call)
phone (see 'call' above)
phone booth / pay phone / call box (a public telephone where you put in money to make a call)
pick up (to answer the phone)
receiver (the part of the phone you pick up to hear and speak, especially on an old-fashioned phone)
ring (noun: the sound the phone makes, or verb: to make a call)

Answering the phone

Hello?
Pizzie's Pizza, how can I help you?
The English Academy, good evening, Paul speaking.

Introducing yourself

Hi Linda, it's me, George.
Hello, this is Julie calling.
Good morning, it's Jane from the hairdresser's here.
This is him / Speaking / You're speaking to him (These are expressions used when the caller asks to speak to you, but didn't realise that you were the one he wanted to speak to)

Asking to speak to someone

Informal

Is Jane in, please?
Is Jane there, please?
Can I speak to your mother, please?

Formal

May I speak to Dr. Jones, please?
Is the doctor available, please?
Good afternoon, I'd like to make an appointment.
Could you put me through to the accounts department, please?

Putting someone through

Just a sec (=second). I'll get him. (informal)
Hang on one sec / Hang on a mo (= moment) (informal)
Please hold the line; I'll put you through to his office.
One moment please.

Having problems understanding

Could you spell that for me, please?
Could you speak a little slower, please?
Could you please repeat that?
I'm sorry. My English isn't so good - could you speak a little clearer, please?

Messages

Julie isn't in, I'm afraid. Who's this? (Informal)
I'm sorry, but Pedro isn't available right now. Can I take a message?
He's busy right now. Would you like to leave a message?

Yes, can you tell her that her husband called?
No, that's all right; I'll call back.
Yes, could you take my number down, please? It's José from the Jules Academy.My number is ...




ELO - Telephone Line

Hello, how are you?
Have you been all right,
Through all the lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely nights,
That's what I'd say, I'd tell you everything,
If you'd pick up that _________ .

Hey, how you feelin'?
Are you still the same?
Don't you realise the things we did, we did,
Were all for real, not a dream,
I just can't believe,
They've all faded out of view

Doo wop, dooby dooby wop,
Doo wop, do la la la la la,
Blue Days, black nights,
Doo wop, do la la la la la

I look into the sky,
(The love you need ain't gonna see you through),
And I wonder why,
(The little things are finally coming true)

_________ line, give me some time,
I'm living in twilight,
Oh, _________ line, give me some time,
I'm living in twilight

OK, so no one's_________,
Well can't you just let it ____ a little longer, longer, longer?
I'll just sit tight, through the shadows of the night,
And let it ____ for evermore

Doo wop, dooby dooby wop,
Doo wop, do la la la la la,
Blue Days, black nights,
Doo wop, do la la la la la

I look into the sky,
(The love you need ain't gonna see you through),
And I wonder why,
(The little things are finally coming true)

_________ line, give me some time,
I'm living in twilight,
Oh, _________ line, give me some time,
I'm living in twilight

Now, play this matching game by clicking on the icon below.
It's a dialogue of someone making an appointment at the hairdresser's.
Chiew's ESL EFL CLIL Online Games Juegos Activities Actividades for Education, 游戏学英语

Click on the icon below to play the next game.

It's also a telephone conversation, but it's in jumbled order. First, you'll have to match the dialogue, and when you've finished, put the conversation in the correct order. Post your answers in the comments section below.

Chiew's ESL EFL CLIL Online Games Juegos Activities Actividades for Education, 游戏学英语

If you like this and the other games on this blog, please link to them by copying and pasting this HTML code (click anywhere inside the box, click ctrl+A, then ctrl+C) into your own blog or web template. This is the badge you'll get:

Games for Education

16 comments:

  1. <span style="color: #808080;">¿En qué estás pensando...? el video dice como usar el telefono qe en verdad es publicidad </span>

    ReplyDelete
  2. ainara carrillo Harven24 November 2009 at 21:47

    <span style="color: #808080;">Sing:</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">a. Telephone</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">b. Telephone line </span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">c. telephone line</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">d. answering</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">e.</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">f. ring</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">g. telephone line</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">h. telephone line</span>

    ReplyDelete
  3. ainara carrillo Harven24 November 2009 at 21:49

    <span style="color: #808080;">jaja fernando estas mas loko .. xD  en verda si .. xD pero tienes k reyenar los huecos .. xD </span>

    ReplyDelete
  4. ainara carrillo Harven24 November 2009 at 22:18

    <span><span>Hello Chiew ! I´m Ainara Carrillo I study in Harven school. This is my composition. If you can, I good like you to correct it: </span> <span>  I´m going to speak about the crisis. It´s a problem very important in the economy becouse the crisis affect in millions life of people. In this situation a lot of people have lost them houses and then families have got hungry. The poverty is the principal result.</span> <span>   The governement and the shopkeepers can put to fanish to this situation if they down the prices and they pay rise. </span> <span></span> <span></span> <span></span> <span></span> <span>My e-mail is ainara_rosa_94@hotmail.com  </span><span></span> <span>                                                               Bye !</span></span>

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yes, of course, Fernando. It was an advertisement on how to use a rotary telephone. The idea is for you to learn the vocabulary associated with telephones such as dial tone, ring, call, directory, receiver, off the hook, ringing signal, busy signal, make a call, etc. Did you manage to get all that? :-P

    ReplyDelete
  6. Ainara, I've replied to your email.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Claudia O&#39;Shanahan Perera (harven)25 November 2009 at 16:30

    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">chiew no se bien lo k ahi que hacer en los ejercicios de lo de los puzles, ademas no entiendo !</span></span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;"></span></span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">la cancion:</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;"></span> </span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">1. </span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">2. Telephone line </span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">3. telephone line</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">4. answering</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">5.</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">6. ring</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">7. telephone line</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">8. telephone line</span></span></span>

    ReplyDelete
  8. <span style="color: #808080;">Chiew the two games is a good and easy. </span>

    ReplyDelete
  9. <span style="color: #808080;">1.telephone</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">2.telephone line</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">3.telephone  line</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">4.answering</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">5.</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">6.ring</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">7.telephone line</span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">8.telephone line</span>

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thanks, girls, :) for doing the activities. Hope you've learned something!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Victor´s dad:Hello.
    Noelia:Hi! Can I speak to Victor, please?
    Victor:Hi! Noelia.
    Noelia:Hi! Victor.What are you doing on Saturday morning?
    Victor: I play football .And you?
    Noelia:I go shopping and I meet my friends.Can I  watch film with you on Saturday afternoon?
    Victor:Yes, :-P K.
    Noelia:OK,see you at the cinema.
    Victor: :-P K,bye.

    ReplyDelete
  12. <span>Paola:hello Marta </span>
    <span>Marta:hi! Paola</span>
    <span>Paola:how are you?</span>
    <span>Marta:i fine thank you. And you ?</span>
    <span>Paola : very well thank</span>
    <span>Paola:todat is very hot</span>
    <span>Marta:yes , i go to the beach</span>
    <span>Marta: do you want  to go with me ?</span>
    <span>Paola:ok . I wait for you in the beach</span>
    <span>Marta:good bye</span>
    <span>Paola:bye</span>
    <span></span>

    ReplyDelete
  13. ainara carrillo Harven7 July 2011 at 09:01

    <span><span>Hello Chiew ! I´m Ainara Carrillo I study in Harven school. This is my composition. If you can, I good like you to correct it: </span> <span>  I´m going to speak about the crisis. It´s a problem very important in the economy becouse the crisis affect in millions life of people. In this situation a lot of people have lost them houses and then families have got hungry. The poverty is the principal result.</span> <span>   The governement and the shopkeepers can put to fanish to this situation if they down the prices and they pay rise. </span> <span></span> <span></span> <span></span> <span></span> <span>My e-mail is ainara_rosa_94@hotmail.com  </span><span></span> <span>                                                               Bye !</span></span>

    ReplyDelete
  14. Victor´s dad:Hello.
    Noelia:Hi! Can I speak to Victor, please?
    Victor:Hi! Noelia.
    Noelia:Hi! Victor.What are you doing on Saturday morning?
    Victor: I play football .And you?
    Noelia:I go shopping and I meet my friends.Can I  watch film with you on Saturday afternoon?
    Victor:Yes, :-P K.
    Noelia:OK,see you at the cinema.
    Victor: :-P K,bye.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Claudia O&#39;Shanahan Perera (har7 July 2011 at 09:01

    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">chiew no se bien lo k ahi que hacer en los ejercicios de lo de los puzles, ademas no entiendo !</span></span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;"></span></span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">la cancion:</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;"></span> </span></span>
    <span style="color: #808080;"><span><span style="color: #808080;">1. </span>
    <span style="color: #808080;">2. Telephone line </span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">3. telephone line</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">4. answering</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">5.</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">6. ring</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">7. telephone line</span> 
    <span style="color: #808080;">8. telephone line</span></span></span>

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks, girls, :) for doing the activities. Hope you've learned something!

    ReplyDelete

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