"phone someone" = call someone

"Why don't you phone him and see if he's coming to the party?"

"call it day" = finish work and leave your workplace

"Let's call it a day . We can finish this project tomorrow."

Smart Phones

1. Pre-Listening Exercises

In today's world, is a phone a necessity for people of all ages, or is it just a luxury item? Why or why not? How do people who grew up without mobile phones feel about this?

HELPFUL TIP : Although texting is a very popular form of communication for short messages, talking on the phone can be even better when you want to avoid misunderstandings on important topics.
cell phone

2. Listening Exercises

Listen to the telephone message by pressing the "Play Audio" button and answer the questions.

1. The young man says he needs a new phone because __________.
A. his parents took his last one
B. someone stole his last one
C. his phone is an older model

2. How many phones does the young man already have?
A. two
B. three
C. four

3. According to the conversation, what are the young man's parents like?
A. friendly
B. generous
C. kind

4. What do his parents want their son to do to get a phone?
A. take out money from his bank account
B. find a job and work to earn money
C. ask his brother if he can use an old phone

5. What is the BEST word to describe the young man's personality?
A. talkative
B. mean
C. self-centered


1. his phone is an older model
2. two
3. kind
4. find a job and work to earn money
5. self-centered


Woman: Hey. Uh, you look really unhappy. What's going on?

Young Man: Ah, you don't want to know.

Woman: Okay, see ya.

Young Man: Wait, wait, wait! Why are you walking away?

Woman: Well, you said I didn't want to know.

Young Man: No, wait. You see my parents don't really love me.

Woman: What do you mean? When I met them last week, they seemed really caring.

Young Man: Uh, you don't understand! You see. I want a new smart phone . . . I mean, I need one, and my parents won't buy me it!

Woman: Uh, excuse me, but uh, don't you already have a iPhone?

Young Man: Man, yeah, but it's three months old, and it has a small scratch on it.

Woman: Where? Let me see. [Look!] I don't see a scratch.

Young Man: Look, look right here!. [THAT?] [Do] you see it?

Woman: It's just a speck of dust.

Young Man: Anyway. And my other phone . . .

Woman: What? You have two phones?

Young Man: That's beside the point.

Woman: So, so, did your parents give you a reason for not buying you a new phone?

Young Man: Not a good one. Only something about being self-reliant and not being so entitled, or something like that. And now they want to work . . . on the neighbor's farm to pay for it. [Good idea!] It's not fair.

Woman: Hey, I think I know the problem. [What?] Take a look in the mirror. You'll see both the problem and the solution.

Young Man: Uh! You're no help.

3. Post-Listening Exercises

Many teachers have concerns about students' use of cell phones at school and in the classroom. Think of three reasons for and against this issue and explain your ideas from your own experience.

4. Online Investigations

Write one of your teachers an email about one of the topics or questions below. Then, summarize the teacher's response and compare his or her answer to your own opinion.

  1. At what age is it appropriate for a child to have his or her own phone?
  2. How important is it for parents to track their children's phone calls, text messages, or Internet use on the phone?
  3. Should children pay at least a part of their phone bill, and if so, how much?
  4. Which method is better to ask someone out on a date: sending a text message or calling the person?
  5. Which method is better to end a relationship: sending a text message or calling the person?
  6. Is it illegal to text and drive in your city or region? If so, what is the penalty?
  7. If a student cheats on a test by taking pictures of it and sending them to a friend, how do you handle the situation?
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