Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Farmer, the Son, and the Donkey

A farmer and his son were walking their donkey to market, where they were going to sell him. They had not gone far when they met a bunch of giggling girls.
“Look there!” cried one of them. “Aren’t they a foolish pair to be trudging along on foot when one of them could be riding?”
When the farmer heard this, he told his son to get up on the donkey. They then went along happily until they came to a group of men talking by the side of the road.
“My, my!” said one of the men. “Just look at that young fellow riding in comfort while his poor old father has to walk.”
“Get off that donkey, you lazy boy!” shouted another, “and let your father ride.”
Right away, the son slid off the donkey, and the farmer took his place. Before they had gone far, they passed a group of housewives.
“Why, you heartless old fellow!” cried several of the women at once. “How can you ride when your poor tired child can hardly keep up with you? What mean fathers there are nowadays!”
So the good-natured farmer pulled his son up behind him, and they both rode along on the donkey’s back. When they reached the town, a villager pointed at them. “Tell me,” he asked the farmer, “is that donkey yours?”
“Yes,” replied the farmer.
“I would never have thought so,” said the villager, “from the way you load him down. You should be ashamed of yourself! The two of you are better able to carry that poor beast than he is to carry you.”
“You are right!” agreed the farmer. Then he and his son got down from the donkey’s back.
How could they possibly carry the donkey? The farmer puzzled over this for a long time. Then at last an idea came to him. Cutting a think branch from a nearby tree, he trimmed it into a stout pole. With some difficulty, he and his son tied the donkey’s feet to the pole and lifted both the pole and the donkey to their shoulders.
By the time they reached the town bridge, a whole crowd of people had gathered to hoot and laugh at the funny-looking sight. The donkey, frightened by the racket, took it into his head to kick at the ropes. All of a sudden, he pulled loose from the pole and tumbled off the bridge into the water. Since he was unable to swim, he soon drowned.
The farmer and his son hung their heads in shame and started back home.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The moral of this story is this:
If you try to please everyone, you may end up pleasing no one at all.

Look at these words from the story and choose the meaning from a, b, or c.
1. giggling (adj.) “a bunch of giggling girls”
a. sewing
b. laughing
c. dancing

2. foolish (adj.) “Aren’t they a foolish pair?
a. stupid
b. smart
c. determined

3. trudging (verb) “They were trudging along on foot.”
a. tripping
b. running
c. walking in a heavy-footed laborious way

4. fellow (noun) “That young fellow was riding in comfort.”
a. a young man
b. a young woman
c. to be behind someone

5. slid off (verb) “The son slid off the donkey.”
a. took the lid off
b. bell down from
c. felt shy

6. heartless (adj.) “He’s a heartless man.”
a. having a bad heart
b. in love
c. lacking kindness

7. cried (verb) “Several women cried at once.”
a. felt very sad
b. shouted
c. talked softly

8. at once (adverbial “noun”)
a. by themselves
b. at the same time
c. for the first time

9. hardly (adverb) “The child can hardly keep up with you.”
a. barely; with difficulty
b. very difficult
c. certainly

10. mean (adj.) “What mean fathers there are nowadays!”
a. bad-tempered, nasty, unsympathetic, hard-hearted
b. definite
c. for men only

11. nowadays (adverbial “noun”)
a. in your free time
b. a long time ago
c. during the present time

12. good-natured (adj.) “The good-natured farmer pulled his son up behind him.”
a. healthy
b. easy-going and cheerful
c. vegetarian

*13. poor (adj.) “That poor beast is carrying too heavy a load.
a. used when you feel sorry for someone
b. having llittle money
c. dirty

POOR in idioms: “You poor thing!”
“Poor you!”
“Poor guy/girl”

14. beast (noun)
a. a monster or dragon
b. any four-footed animal used for labor, food or sport
c. a bird

15. trimmed (verb) “He trimmed the tree into a stout pole.”
a. tripped over some wood
b. cooked with wood, like a barbeque
c. to make neat by clipping or to cut the excess

16. stout (adj.)
a. short
b. fat
c. tall

17. hoot (verb) “The whole crowd of people gathered to hoot and laugh at the
funny-looking sight.”
a. to shout, especially in a negative way
b. to ask who
c. to vote

18. funny-looking (adj.)
a. a joke
b. handsome
c. strange or odd; not good-looking

19. racket (noun) “He was frightened by the racket.”
a. lots of noise
b. something used to play tennis with
c. a rocket ship

20. pulled loose (verb) “He pulled loose from the pole.”
a. got free
b. got tied up
c. got lost

21. to please (verb)
a. to give enjoyment or pleasure; to satisfy
b. to place something down
c. to call the police

1.Please circle all the past tense verbs in the story.
2. How many past tense verbs did you circle? __________________
3. Choose 5 of those past tense verbs and write your own sentences

b. _________________________________________________________________



e. _________________________________________________________________

B. There are 3 PAST PERFECT VERBS in the story. HAD + past participle
Please write these here:

a.___________________ b.___________________ c. ___________________

PAST PERFECT TENSE is used when two past tenses are in the same sentence, one thing happened before the other. For that first happening, use the PAST PERFECT.
For example:
I had already eaten dinner when my husband came home from work.
By the time my husband came home, I had already eaten dinner.

Which happened first? Your dinner or your husband’s coming home?

Because I had already graduated from college, I got a good job.

Which happened first? Your graduation or your getting a good job?

They had not gone far when they met a bunch of giggling girls.

Which happened first? Their going far or their meeting the girls?

Please try writing a sentence using past perfect tense. You may use ALREADY or
BY THE TIME to help you with the idea of something happening FIRST.
YOUR TURN: _____________________________________________________________



Possessive pronouns are possessives used WITHOUT NOUNS.


(as opposed to possessive adjectives which are used with nouns.)
My book/books Your book/books His book/books Her book/books
Our apartment Your car/cars Their child/children

Please write a pair of sentences to show me you understand the difference:
For example:

a. I love my new car, and she loves her car.
aa. I love MINE, and she loves HERS.

b. We drove to the hospital to see their new grandson.
bb. All the babies were cute, but THEIRS was the cutest.


c. ___________________________________________________________

cc . ___________________________________________________________

D. WHAT used in sentences of surprise with an exclamation point.
This is NOT A QUESTION, so the subject and verb are in regular order. S V

“What mean fathers there are nowadays!”

Examples: What + (plural or non-count noun) and

a. What beautiful/awful weather we’re having!
b. What tender meat this is!
c. What delicious vegetables you cooked!

YOUR TURN: ___________________________________________________
What a + (singular noun)

a. What a delicious dinner you cooked!
b. What a terrific time we had at your party!
c. What a mess you made in the kitchen!

YOUR TURN: ___________________________________________________

E. TOO adjective + A singular noun + infinitive (This is a negative idea.)

Examples: a. This is too heavy a box for me to carry.
b. Lance is too short a person to play basketball.
c. My grandmother is too weak a woman to climb up the stairs.

YOUR TURN: ___________________________________________________

[ or You could say it this way: (TOO adjective + noun)
aa. This box is too heavy for me to carry.
bb. Lance is _______________________________
cc. My grandmother is ______________________________________ ]

Talk to your partner and then write your answers in complete sentences.

1. Why were the farmer and his son walking their donkey to market?

2. Who rode on the donkey first and why?

3. Who rode on the donkey next and why?

4. Why did the farmer and the son decide to get off the donkey?

5. What finally happened?

6. What does the moral of this story mean? Tell me in your own words what this means:
If you try to please everyone, you may end up pleasing no one at all.


No comments: