A Treasury of Literary Classics -
Chinese Fables and Tales Series (2)


    Read the Chinese story and answer the following questions.

Quitting Halfway

Click here to read the text.

1. Where did Le Yangzi live?

A. He lived in a house near a roadside.
B. He lived in a small village.
C. He lived next to a school.
D. He lived in a big villa.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 1.

"During the Warring States Period, there was a poor man called Le Yangzi. He lived with his wife in a small village."

2. What did Le Yangzi find when he was returning home?

A. He found a basket of gold.
B. He found a bowl of gold.
C. He found a box of gold.
D. He found a piece of gold.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 2.

"One day, Le Yangzi saw a piece of gold near a roadside when he was heading back home."

3. How did Le Yangzi feel when he found the gold?

A. He was worried.
B. He was embarrassed.
C. He was excited.
D. He was moved.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 2.

"He picked it up at once and yelled happily, 'How lucky I am! Let me give it to my wife and she must be thrilled!' "

4. How did Le Yangzi's wife feel when she saw the gold?

A. She was unhappy.
B. She was thrilled.
C. She was ashamed.
D. She was moved.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 2.

"However, his wife was very sad."

5. What did Le Yangzi's wife ask her husband to do then?

A. She asked her husband to sell the gold.
B. She asked her husband to put the gold back.
C. She asked her husband to bury the gold.
D. She asked her husband to keep the gold at home.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 2.

" 'How can you bring this piece of gold home? Please put it

6. The wife quoted "an upright person does not drink the water from a thief's spring". What is "an upright person" like? An upright person is ____________.

A. tall and confident
B. friendly and cheerful
C. honest and responsible
D. persistent and hard-working

Your answer:

What is a thief?
Do you think a good person would drink the water from a thief's spring?
What did Le Yangzi's wife ask her husband to do with the gold?
What kind of person did she want her husband to be?

7. Speaking verbs are verbs such as "say" or "ask" which we use to report what someone said. These verbs have more specific meanings and give readers more information about the thoughts and feelings of the characters.

Read the following descriptions. Fill in each blank with a speaking verb from the list given. Each option can be used once only.

A. yelled B. questioned C. promised D. murmured
Description Speaking verb
7a. "I will finish my studies before I return home again," ___________ Le Yangzi.
7b. "How lucky I am to have this piece of gold!" _____________ Le Yangzi.
7c. "I am sorry that I have not yet completed my studies," _______________ Le Yangzi.
7d. "Why do you return home without completing your studies?" ____________ Le Yangzi's wife.

Read the sentences carefully to understand their meanings.

8. What did Le Yangzi's wife do at home?

A. She taught students at home.
B. She cooked food for her neighbours.
C. She grew vegetables at home.
D. She wove cloth at home.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 4.

" 'I worked so hard to weave this cloth bit by bit, and now I have cut it. It means that my previous time and hard work are wasted,' said his wife earnestly."

9. What did Le Yangzi do after listening to his wife's response?

A. He continued to pursue his studies.
B. He gave up his studies.
C. He started his business.
D. He continued to work in a school.

Your answer:

Read paragraph 5.

"Le Yangzi was moved by what his wife said. 'I promise I will continue my studies,' he said. He then went back to the school. A few years later, Le Yangzi became a famous scholar."

Quitting Halfway

Score Sheet

Questions Results
Question 1
Question 2
Question 3
Question 4
Question 5
Question 6
Question 7a
Question 7b
Question 7c
Question 7d
Question 8
Question 9

10. What is the moral lesson of the story? Based on the story, which Chinese saying can you think of?

Extension Activity

Watch the video clip "Climbing to a New Future", which is about how a Chinese clifftop village, Atulie'er, has changed after a steel staircase of 2,600 feet was built.

Acknowledgements: The China Current


Building a steel staircase of 2,600 feet on a cliff was a big challenge but people finally made it. What have you learnt from them? Think and share your ideas or experiences with your parents or classmates.