ESL Discussion Worksheet: Robot Police in San Francisco

Crime is just… different in America. And apparently, so are the solutions to the problem. Discuss new capabilities for robot police in San Francisco with your students along with an imaginary future where crime is fought with autonomous and intelligent robots.

I just thought of a great warm up for this discussion… Find a clip or trailer for Robocop (either the 1987 classic or the 2014 reboot) and ask your students what they think of this idea for a movie. Or maybe they’ve already seen it?
Then you can move on to the topic at hand which is a controversial decision about robot police in San Francisco. It’s not quite as dramatic as Robocop, but it’s related, I promise!


Use this ESL Discussion Worksheet however you’d like, but here’s what we recommend:

  1. Warm-up question(s) (choose one or two):Have you had any interactions with police officers, can you tell us about one? How do police differ from country to country, in your opinion? Which country have you visited with the nicest/meanest/etc. police officers? Then, watch the Robocop trailer and ask your students to give you a plot summary based on just the trailer.
  2. Watch the videos once: Tell your students they will now hear about robots actually being used by police today in America. Ask them if they would have voted yes or no for this measure and why. The first time around, they may not have understood that these are NOT autonomous or intelligent robots, they are remote-controlled. There is no need to correct them now, as one of the questions on the worksheet deals with this response.
  3. Vocabulary: Check out the vocabulary on the PDF and answer any questions.
  4. Watch the a second time: Answer the questions on the PDF in pairs.
  5. Speaking activity: Put students in pairs to complete the speaking activity – directions on the PDF. Be sure they understand that this time, we are thinking about an imaginary future where the police robots are autonomous and intelligent.
  6. If you’ve still got time left over, put your students in new pairs or small groups and discuss the group activity.


Looking for more? Check all our Advanced Activities and our Discussion Worksheets.


There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “ESL Discussion Worksheet: Robot Police in San Francisco”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

Ian Kime

Ian Kime

I have been teaching English abroad since receiving my CELTA certificate in Poland in 2018. I enjoy tracking my individual students’ development but love having lessons with big groups! Now that I teach online, I am accompanied by my sidekicks Olaf, Mała, Pirate and Bandit on a regular basis.

It takes a team of 13 to create and produce this material. In order for that to continue, please think about purchasing your own subscription to ESL Expertz and encourage your colleagues to do the same. We appreciate your confidence and support!

Featured now

Newest activities