Easy Stories in English

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The Elephant and the Hare

New Vocabulary: , , , , , , , , ,
Word Count:
Original Author: ,


Hey, this is Ariel. I just want to remind you that there are live streams on my YouTube channel every Saturday at 13:00pm British Summer Time (GMT+1). So if you want to come, make sure you go to my YouTube channel, or you can join the email newsletter at EasyStoriesInEnglish.com and I will email you before the live stream. I love doing the live streams and I hope to see you there. Bye!

Welcome to Easy Stories in English, the podcast that will take your English from OK to Good, and from Good to Great.

I am Ariel Goodbody, your host for this show. Today’s story is for beginners. The name of the story is The Elephant and the Hare. You can find a transcript of the episode at EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Elephant. That’s EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Elephant. This contains the full story, as well as my conversation before it.

So today’s episode actually has two stories. One of the listeners emailed in. A 16-year-old French guy called Leo Gigon emailed a personal story to me, and it’s quite short so I decided to put the story before today’s main story. So we will first have Leo Gigon’s personal story and then we will have The Elephant and the Hare.

So thank you so much for sending in your story, Leo!

A referee blowing her whistle, by Liondartois under CC BY-SA 4.0

Before I tell Leo’s story, I just want to explain one word in it, and that word is referee. A referee is a person who helps in sports games to make decisions. They usually wear black and white stripes. When a referee sees that a player breaks a rule, they blow their whistle and tell off the player. In football, referees can give yellow or red cards to the player. If a player gets two yellow cards or one red card, they cannot play anymore. Sometimes, people watching get very angry at referees because they think they are making very bad decisions.

OK, and now onto Leo’s story.

My name is Leo Gigon. I am 16 years old and I come from France. I am in high school and I do a lot of sports, but I mainly play football. To play in competitions, our team needed a referee, so the coach asked me to be the referee for the team. I accepted, and we managed to get to the French Futsal Championship. Futsal is a type of indoor football. This competition was the highest in the country.

We went to the championship in Brittany, a region of France. My team went through the qualifying round with me as the referee, and then we won three times, reaching the final of the championship. We played against the title holders, the team that won last year, and beat them! Of course, we were so happy. We qualified for the World Championship of Futsal, which took place in Tel Aviv.

Without my help, they couldn’t have gone to the French championship, so they took me along with them, and I was so excited.

One month later, we took the flight from Paris to Tel Aviv. After landing, we went to the hotel, and it was amazing—five stars!

The championship was organized into four groups of four countries, making sixteen in total. There were people from all over the world, like China and Brazil, and some countries even had two teams.

The competition was difficult, but we kept winning, and made it to the semi-final. We went against Croatia, but unfortunately they beat us. So we finished 4th in the world championship. Still, Croatia went into the final against Brazil, but Brazil beat them. They were an amazing team. In the end, they were more than 10 goals ahead of Croatia. It was an amazing match to watch.

During our time there, we also visited Jerusalem, which is an amazing city. Overall, it was a great time and a fantastic experience.

Thanks again for sending in the story, Leo! Remember, if you want to send in a story, and it can be a personal story or a fictional story, email me at .

Today’s main story comes from the Maasai people. The Maasai people live in central and southern Kenya, and northern Tanzania, two African countries. Basically, we’ve had a lot of European and some Asian stories, so I thought today we would do something a bit different.

Maasai dancers, by K15photos under CC BY-SA 4.0

OK, I’ll just explain some words that are in today’s story.

A hare is like a rabbit, but it is bigger than a rabbit. It has much longer legs than a rabbit as well.

Smell is when you go sniff sniff. You use your nose to smell something. Usually, you smell without having to try. It is automatic. But my sense of smell is quite bad, so sometimes I don’t notice a smell when other people do.

A stone is a big grey thing that you find on the ground. Stones are used to build certain things, like houses. You can also throw stones at someone if you want to hurt them.

Drop is when you have something in your hands and you let it fall to the ground, you stop holding it. For example, when I am teaching I always drop my pen on the floor. If you are eating ice cream and you drop it on the floor it is very sad because you cannot finish it.

Rip off is when you pull something off something else very quickly. For example, you might rip off a sticker or a plaster. If it’s really, really hot, you might rip off your shirt. Usually, when you rip something it hurts or can cause damage. One of the worst things that can happen is when your trousers rip and you have to buy new ones.

Skin is the outside part of the body. Humans can have dark skin or light skin. Some people have lots of hair on their skin, but others don’t. If your skin is hard or rough, you can use moisturiser to make it nice and smooth. Personally, I have quite dry skin and I often have to put cream on my hands.

Catch up to, and the past tense is caught up to, is when you are running after someone and you finally get to them. In a race, one person might be faster than all the other runners, and they are trying to catch up to the fastest runner.

An antelope, by Charles J Sharp under CC BY-SA 4.0

An antelope is an animal that lives mainly in Africa and Asia. Antelopes look like deer, but they have white stomachs and long horns. Lions and cheetahs eat antelopes.

When you play a trick on someone, you tell them something that isn’t true but make them believe it. For example, maybe you tell someone that you have a cake for them, but when they ask for it, you throw the cake in their face. The idea is to make fun of someone else.

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OK, so listen and enjoy!

The Elephant and the Hare

Once there was a group of elephants. They were going to visit their family, and they wanted to bring them honey. So they went and collected honey, and started walking.

On the road, they came across a hare. The hare wanted to go across a river, but the water was too deep.

‘Oh, Mr. Elephant,’ said the hare. ‘You look very big. Can you carry me across the water?’

The elephant said, ‘Yes, of course. You can jump on my back.’

So the hare sat on the elephant’s back and they went across the river. The hare sniffed and smelled the honey. It smelled so good! The elephant was carrying two bags of honey. Slowly, the hare went down and ate one of the bags.

When she finished, she said, ‘Mr. Elephant, I am quite bored up here. Can you give me a stone to play with?’

So the elephant gave her a stone. She put the stone in the now empty bag of honey. Then she ate from the second bag of honey.

When she finished, she said, ‘Mr. Elephant, I dropped my stone. Could you give me another stone? I want to throw it at the birds.’

So the elephant gave her another stone. Then she asked for another, and another. Finally, she filled up both bags with stones.

‘Well, Mr. Elephant,’ said the hare, ‘I will be going now. Goodbye!’

And the hare jumped off the elephant’s back and ran away.

When the elephants arrived, they saw that the bags were full of stones.

‘Oh no!’ cried the elephant. ‘That hare stole my honey! I must catch her!’

So the elephant ran after the hare. The hare saw too late that the elephant was coming, and he took her tail and pulled on it hard. He ripped off the skin of the hare’s tail, but the hare ran away.

‘Not so fast!’ cried the elephant. ‘I will get you!’

As the hare ran, she saw some farmers. She said, ‘Hey, you farmers! Do you see that elephant over there? You should run away, because he is running after you.’

So the farmers ran away. When the elephant saw them running, he thought that they were running after the hare. Finally, he caught up to them.

‘Hey, you farmers. Have you seen a hare with a skinned tail around here?’

The farmers said, ‘She went that way.’

So the elephant ran after the hare.

Next, the hare saw some women cooking outside. ‘Hey you, women who are cooking! Do you see that elephant over there? You should run away, because he is running after you.’

So the women ran inside their houses. The elephant caught up to them and said, ‘Hey you, lovely women. Have you seen a hare with a skinned tail around here?’

The women answered, ‘She ran over there.’

The hare ran until she saw some antelopes who were eating grass. She said, ‘Hey, you antelopes. Do you see that elephant over there? You should run away, because he is running after you.’

The antelopes ran far away, but the elephant finally caught up to them. He said, ‘Hey, you antelopes. Have you seen a hare with a skinned tail around here?’

So the antelopes showed him where the hare went.

Finally, the hare came to a group of hares. She said, ‘Hey, other hares. Do you see that elephant over there? You should all rip the skin off your tails, because he is looking for a hare without skin on its tail.’

So all the hares quickly ripped the skin off their tails. The elephant caught up to them and said, ‘Hey, you hares. Have you seen a hare with a skinned tail around here?’

The hares said, ‘Don’t you see that all our tails are skinned?’

And they all showed their tails to the elephant. The elephant did not know what to do. He could not find the hare who stole the honey, because all the hares looked the same. The hare had played a trick on him!

So in the end, the elephant did not catch the hare. And from that day onwards, he never helped a hare again.


If you enjoyed the story, please consider supporting us on Patreon. Go to Patreon.com/EasyStoriesInEnglish. That’s Patreon.com/EasyStoriesInEnglish. For just a few dollars a month you can get extra episodes, exercises, and much more. Thank you for listening, and until next week.


12 responses to “The Elephant and the Hare”

  1. Archie avatar

    So the main idea is :
    _ The reason why everyone scares eleplants
    _ The reason why the hares tails are skinned
    But also, anyway, I really like the story, thanks
    And also thank you for Leo’s story

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      The idea behind the story is to teach children to be clever and resourceful. It’s quite a different perspective because in European stories the hare would be the villain, but here he is the hero. You’re very welcome 🙂

  2. It Was great…!!! I am starting with English and this is helping me a lot

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      Thanks for the comment, Andrés! 🙂

  3. Meriem boume avatar
    Meriem boume

    Thank you sooo much you are a good person.. And you’re helping me a lot ❤️❤️❤️

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      You’re very welcome, Meriem! 🙂

  4. Stefania avatar

    Poor elephant! 😜
    Every morning I have breakfast with your stories. First I listen, then I listen again reading the transcript.
    Thank you Ariel! 🤗

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      Thanks for the comment, Stefania! That’s a fantastic way to start the day 🙂

  5. hjjh avatar

    the hare was very sly , anyway the elephant learned that he should be clever when he deal with anyone.
    Thank you, I discovered a lot of vocabulary

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      I’m glad you enjoyed the video, hjjh! Thank you for the comment 🙂

  6. Joyson Sanga avatar
    Joyson Sanga

    I have enjoyed much from your story. It is very helpful especially to English learners.

    1. Ariel Goodbody avatar
      Ariel Goodbody

      Thank you, Joyson 🙂

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