Lesson 2

The Telephone

Lesson Goal:
To encourage children to learn their telephone number.
Lesson Objectives:
  • Recite personal telephone number.
  • Dial the local emergency number and give the needed information.


Content Standards Addressed:
Common Core State Standards
National Standards 


Some people use the telephone to gain information about you and your family. Sometimes they want to know if you are home or not. While it is fun to talk on the phone, it is also important to follow the safety rules.


Important points to discuss include:

1. Some callers are not nice. They do not use the phone correctly.

2. Never give your name or address to callers who will not give their names or are strangers. A stranger is someone you do not know well or have never met before.

3. If frightened for any reason by the caller, hang up.

4. Some sample responses if your parents cannot come to the phone: "My parents cannot come of the phone right now. People leave your number, and my parents will return your call."

5. If you cannot write down numbers, the best response is: "My parents cannot come to the phone right now; please call later."

6. Another common answer: "I don't know. Please call later."

7. Be assured you will not get in trouble for giving these answers. If the caller in honest and an understanding person, he/she will call back later and respect you for handling the phone in such a grown-up manner.

8. If there is an emergency at home, dial 911 and tell the operator the situation, give your name and address, and answer any questions the operator may have. The operator is a "safe stranger."

9. If dialing 911 is difficult, dial 0 for the operator.

10. 911 is for emergency purposes only.

11. When calling, always identify yourself.

12. If a phone is not in the home, go to a trusted neighbors house to call 911.​



Depending on the age of the participants, it may never be appropriate for the children to be home alone. Very young children should always have supervision.



Practicing Calls

Children will practice making outgoing calls.

1. Provide a copy of the Telephone Keypad reproducible for each child.

2. Have each child practice dialing important numbers, their personal telephone number and 911 on their keypad sheet.

3. Have each child practice giving the operator their name and address.


Reproducible: Telephone Keypad



1. Have children keep a journal throughout the program. To keep parents involved in the program, have the children take it home after each lesson.

2. A journal can be made by taking lined 8 1/2" x 11" paper and stapling on a construction paper cover.

3. Have students write a sentence after each lesson or draw a picture about what they learned.


Guest Speaker

1. Have a guest speaker from the 911 dispatch or police department come and talk to the group.

2. Another option would be to take a field trip to the police station of 911-dispatch office.


What If?

A child should be respectful, without providing too much information to a caller. This activity allows children to practice what they would do and say in certain situations.

Ask the children, "What would you do if you, (child's name), received a phone call and the caller says:"

    1. "Who is this?"
    2. "Is your mommy home?"
    3. "What number did I reach?"
    4. "Whose home is this?"
    5. "Are you alone?"
    6. "Do your parents work? What time will they be home?"
    7. "Hi! Your mother ordered a magazine subscription, and I'm checking to see if the name and address I have is correct."
    8. "This is Jones Department Store. We are delivering your package at 1p.m. Wednesday. Will someone be home?"
    9. "I'm Rob Smith, a friend of your father's. We grew up together. I'm in town for a few days. I want to see him. Will the family be home this weekend?"


Leader's Fast Facts:

1. Pay phones are free for 911 calls.

2. 911 started in 1957 in response to requests from the National Associate of Fire Chiefs recommendations of a single number for reporting fires nationwide. ​