Short story - reading comprehension (past time) Exercises with keys


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READ THE TEXT BELOW AND ANSWER THE QUESTIONS

Joe was the son of a farmer. His father's farm was poor, and Joe worked on it for a long time, but then his father died, and Joe said, "I needn't stay here now. I'll sell this farm and buy one in a better place. Then I'll soon be rich." 
He bought a farm in the east of the country, but then Ms new neighbours said to him, "The weather's often very bad here. The wind's very strong, and it breaks windows and doors. You must build a room under the ground, and then you and your family can go down there, and you'll be safe from the wind."
So Joe built a room under the ground. It was a lot of work, because the ground was hard. 
But after that, the weather was good for a very long time. There was no wind, and Joe spoke angrily. He said, "Why did I listen to my neighbours? I didn't have to make that room under the ground. The wind never blows strongly here." 
But then one day there was a very strong wind, and Joe and his family had to go down into their room under the ground. They were there for a long time. Then the wind stopped, and they came up. All the windows and doors in their house were broken. 
Joe was not angry about his work now. He smiled happily and said, "Ah! I'm glad I built that room!" 

EXERCISE 1
Look at these questions and find the right answers. 

1. What was Joe's father?
a) He was a farmer. 
b) He was a teacher.

2. Was his father rich?
a) No, he was not. 
b) Yes, he was.

3. Why did Joe leave his father's farm?
a) Because the wind was very strong there. 
b) Because he wanted a farm in a better place.

4. Why did he need a room under the ground?
a) Because the doors and windows of his farm were broken. 
b) Because there were very strong winds in that place.

5. Did the wind often blow strongly after that?
a) No, it did not. 
b) Yes, it did.

6. Was Joe happy about that?
a) No, he was not. 
b) Yes, he was.

7. Why did he go down into the room under the ground one day?
a) Because the weather was very cold. 
b) Because there was a very strong wind.

8. Who went with him?
a) His family did. 
b) His new neighbours did.

9. What did the wind do?
a) It broke the windows and doors of Joe's house. 
b) It went down into the room under the ground.

10. Was Joe sad then?
a) No, he was happy. 
b) Yes, he was. 

EXERCISE 2 
Write this story. Choose the right words each time:

Joe worked on his (father's/son's) farm. It was a (poor/rich) farm, because it was in a (bad/good) place. Then Joe bought (another/the) farm, and he (bought/made) a room under the ground, because his (father/neighbours) said, "The (weather/wind) can (be/blow) very (good/strongly) here, and you will not be safe in your house then." But the (weather was/wind did) not (blow/good) for a long time, and Joe was (angry/happy), because he (did not need/needed) his room under the ground, Then (the wind stopped/there was a very strong wind), and it broke the doors and windows of Joe's (house/room under the ground). He was (happy/sad) after that. 

EXERCISE 3 
Must shows obligation (e.g. "The wind is very strong, so Joe and his family must go down into the room under the ground.").
If we want to show that there is no obligation, we can use needn't (e.g. "Joe and his family needn't stay under the ground now, because the wind has stopped.").
For the past tense of must, we can use had to, and for the past tense of needn't, we can use didn't need to. 

Put must, had to, needn't or didn't need to in the empty places:
Joe said, "I want to be rich, so I  ______ buy a farm in a better place." He wanted to be rich, so he _______ buy a farm in a better place. Then Joe said, "I've got a lot of cows, so I ______ buy others." Joe had a lot of cows, so he ______ buy others. 

ANSWER KEYS

Exercise 1: 1a, 2a, 3b, 4b, 5a, 6a, 7b, 8a, 9a, 10a

Exercise 2
Joe worked on his father's farm. It was a poor farm, because it was in a bad place. Then Joe bought another farm, and he made a room under the ground, because his neighbours said, "The wind can blow very strongly here, and you will not be safe in your house then." But the wind did not blow for a long time, and Joe was angry, because he did not need his room under the ground, Then there was a very strong wind, and it broke the doors and windows of Joe's house. He was happy after that. 

Exercise 3
Joe said, "I want to be rich, so I must buy a farm in a better place." He wanted to be rich, so he had to buy a farm in a better place. Then Joe said, "I've got a lot of cows, so I needn't buy others." Joe had a lot of cows, so he didn't need to buy others. 

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