“One Call Away”

Charlie Puth, 2016

Choose from the following activities:

  • Pre-Listening Read through the lyrics. Clarify the annotated expressions.

One Call Away, lyrics.docx          One Call Away, lyrics.pdf

  • Listening Listen to the song while reading the lyrics.
  • Post-Listening Watch the official video.
  • Post-Listening Summarize the video, which tells a story. Working together, my high-beginning students wrote the summary below. I followed up with the “Disappearing Summary” activity described in Activity #2: Summarizing.

He is in love.
But she has a boyfriend.
Her boyfriend is mean.
He thinks about her, but he doesn’t say anything.
He gives her a surprise.
It’s a movie especially for her.

  • Post-Listening Practice offering help and making promises using the construction I’ll + a verb in the simple form. This construction is used in the line I’ll be there to save the day, which is both an offer to help and a promise. The line is repeated four times in the song. The first worksheet below focuses on making offers to help. The second worksheet/activity focuses on making promises. Both worksheets are for levels high beginning and up, although the worksheet “making promises” is slightly more difficult. Part 2 of the “making promises” worksheet asks students to evaluate promises (all beginning with I will) that people make when they get married. It prompted a lot of interaction and laughter in my class of adults in their 20s and 30s. Permission is granted to reproduce for classroom use.

will, offering to help.docx     will, offering to help.pdf

will, making promises.docx          will, making promises.pdf

  • Post-Listening Talk about keeping in kouch. Students sketch someone they love and don’t see often. They answer a few questions under their drawing, then share their drawing and their writing with a partner or in a small group. (For more on this activity, please Activity #3: Class Discussion on a Song’s Theme.) This activity is for levels beginning and up. In my class, the activity stretched beyond the time I had allotted for it because students were exchanging information on apps that helped them keep in touch with friends and family far away. Permission is granted to reproduce for classroom use.

keeping in touch.docx         keeping in touch.pdf

  • Post-Listening Sing along with the chorus as the the song plays a final time. I had thought the chorus was too difficult to sing, but many of my students spontaneously sang it.

I’m only one call away.
I’ll be there to save the day.
Superman got nothing on me.
I’m only one call away.