Vacation English Course

AUSTRALIAN ANIMALS

A Children's Story - The Wombat

BEFORE YOU READ

1. What do these words mean?

slim

bit

notice

put a spell on


2. Which words go with each picture?

3. Look at these questions.
Try to find the answers while you read.

1. What is the name of the wombat in the story?

2. Does the story happen in the past, present or future?


3. Was the wombat always fat?

4. Did the wombat help the Aboriginal people?

5. What did the wise old man do?


The Wombat

The wombat is fat. He has short legs and he moves slowly, but he was not always fat and slow!

Long ago the wombat was slim and fast. He was very good at running. A wombat called Wallace lived near an Aboriginal family. Every day Wallace went out to hunt for food. The Aboriginal family went out to hunt too. When Wallace had eaten enough for the day, he loved to lie in the dark and watch the family as they sat around their campsite. They ate and told stories and laughed.

One day it was very, very hot. Wallace was tired. He decided that today, instead of going out to hunt, he would take a little bit of food from the Aborigines. They wouldn't notice. The next day was very, very hot too. So he took a bit more food. This was very easy for Wallace. It became a habit. Soon he started getting very fat and lazy. His body was fat. His legs looked short and fat.

After a few months the Aboriginal family began to notice that food was missing. They noticed that every day there were footprints near the food. One day they all hid in the bush. Wallace woke up. He yawned and stretched. He saw that no-one was at the campsite, so he walked in and started taking food. The family jumped out and caught him.

The wise old man laughed when he saw how fat Wallace was. He put a spell on Wallace so that he would always be fat. Then they let Wallace go.

Wallace is the great grandfather of all wombats in the world today. That is why today all wombats are slow and have fat little legs and fat bodies.