911, What’s Your Emergency?

Stefanie Simmons - author of the lesson   Stefanie I May 06, 2023
General English, Free Lessons, Speaking Lessons
B2 Upper-Intermediate, C1 Advanced
Pronouns, Compound Relative Pronouns
Grammar, Speaking, Vocabulary, Listening
Lesson ID
Lesson Time
30 minutes
Illustration depicting students learning how to call 911 and practicing compound relative pronouns and idioms related to this topic in an English lesson.

Lesson Overview

911, what’s your emergency? In this lesson, students will learn how to call 911 and identify possible reasons for calling in an emergency situation. Students will listen to a 911 call and discuss important things to do and remember in an emergency. Students will also learn and practice compound relative pronouns and learn and practice vocabulary and idioms relating to this topic. Aimed at both adults and teens, it includes exercises to make learning practical. Students will also work on worksheets and review key vocabulary terms for homework, helping them remember important points.

Lesson Objectives

  • Grammar: Students will learn how to use compound relative pronouns such as "whoever calls 911" and "whatever the emergency." This will help them form complex sentences suitable for various situations.

  • Speaking: They will practice discussing the steps involved in calling 911, including key information and procedures to follow in emergency situations, enhancing their ability to communicate in critical times.

  • Vocabulary: Their vocabulary will expand with terms and idioms related to emergencies, practicing expressions commonly heard during 911 calls, which will deepen their understanding of language used in urgent communications.

  • Listening: They will improve their listening skills by focusing on the context and specifics of 911 calls, learning to identify key details in emergency communications, crucial for understanding real-world emergency scenarios.

  • Homework: Students will complete exercises to practice using compound relative pronouns in contexts related to emergencies, identify the appropriate use of these pronouns in various sentences, and apply this knowledge to describe actions and decisions in simulated emergency scenarios, such as a subway incident.


Listen to the audio of a 911 call between an operator and a young man who is in a park during an emergency situation. The young man might have to perform CPR on his friend if the ambulance does not race to arrive on time!

Audio Transcript

Vocabulary and Pronunciation

stop, drop, and roll [noun]: a simple fire safety technique taught to children, emergency personnel, and workers as part of health and safety training in North America and most other English-speaking countries
first aid kit [noun]: a set of materials and tools used for giving emergency treatment to a sick or injured person
first responder [noun]: a person (such as a police officer or an EMT) who is first to arrive at the scene of an accident or emergency to provide assistance
burglary [noun]: the act of breaking and entering a place to commit a crime
kidnapping [noun]: the illegal act of holding a person against their will, often including transportation
pepper spray [noun]: a type of disabling spray that causes irritation and blinding of the eyes, nose, throat, and skin
dead phone battery [noun]: a phone battery that has no more electricity
collapse [verb]: to fall abruptly and completely
unconscious [adjective]: not knowing or perceiving; not aware
pulse [noun]: a rhythmical beating, vibrating, or sounding caused by the heart
in safe hands [idiom]: means you are looked after by a reliable person, and there is no risk
on the line [idiom]: the act of speaking on the telephone
CPR [noun]: a medical treatment in which you breathe air into someone’s mouth and press on their chest to make them start breathing
Heimlich maneuver [noun]: a first aid procedure used to treat choking in which a person does chest thrusts to help clear the airway
hang on for dear life [idiom]: used when you are in a dangerous situation, and you need to grip something firmly, so you do not fall
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