Aesop’s fable: the tortoise and the hare

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Once upon a time, there was a tortoise that moved very slowly. One day, while traveling through the forest, the tortoise met a hare. When the hare saw how slowly the tortoise moved. The hare made fun of him. The tortoise was not bothered by the hare’s teasing. Instead, the tortoise challenged the hare to a race.
“Because you run so fast, you have to keep stopping. One of these days you will stop and be too tired to start again,” said the tortoise.
The hare laughed. “You’re wrong. You are so slow, you’ll never cross the finish line.”
When the day of the race arrived, all the animals in the forest gathered to watch.
Some said, “If the race is a long one, I think the hare will lose because he always runs so fast, he will run out of energy.”
I think the tortoise will lose,” said others. “He is so slow that he will never finish the race.”
The tortoise and the hare stood on the starting line. The race began. The hare ran off, leaving the tortoise behind.
Soon the hare began to tire. “I’m far ahead of the tortoise,” he said. “I have plenty of time to get to the finish line. I’ll lie down here and take a little nap.”
So the hare slept while the tortoise plodded slowly along at a steady pace.
When the animals saw the tortoise as he got near the finish line, they started cheering for him. The cheering woke up the hare. The hare saw the tortoise near the end of the race and began running, but it was too late. The tortoise had won the race.


1. Write F for fact or O for opinion in the blank next to each sentence.

A.___A hare could never lose a race.

B.___The tortoise was slow.

C.___A tortoise could never win a race.

D.___The hare was fast.

2. Write S for same or D for different in the blank next to each sentence.

A.___All of the animals watched the race.

B.___The hare was fast. The tortoise was slow.

C.___Some of the animals thought the hare would win the race; others thought the tortoise would.

D.___The tortoise and the hare were both traveling through the forest.
3. Circle the correct answer.

A. The hare ran so fast that he got tired and ________.

cried fell asleep lied
B. The tortoise was slow, but he ____________.

kept going was cute sang

C. The tortoise and the hare began the race at the __________.

store pond starting line

D. The tortoise won the ______________.

prize race money

4. Bonus Word Play

Antonyms are words that have opposite meanings. Find the antonym in the story for each of the following words:

fast _______________________

never _______________________

right _______________________

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