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The Offering

The Offering

Look at the picture

Read the questions

Think about the topic

Read the questions. Think about the topic. Pre-Reading Questions What do you know about the Olympics? How often are they held? What types of people are involved? What do you think are the main purposes of the Olympics? What are some of the Olympic traditions?


Look at the picture of the beggar.

What is your opinion of people who must beg for a living?

What is the best way to help people in this situation?

Read and Pronounce

Read the text out loud. Your tutor will listen and help with pronunciation.

The Offering*

Two beggars were sitting on a busy street corner in the downtown section of the city. It was quite clear for a night in December, but the cold wind made them huddle together for heat and comfort. They watched helplessly as scores of people walked by, some purposely ignoring them and others too caught up in their own cares to even notice their existence. Every so often, a kind-hearted woman or a small child would drop a few coins in the hats which lay in front of them on the icy sidewalk. Some people, feeling particularly generous, would even pull out a bill or two from their wallets and stuff them into the beggars’ hats, trying to be as inconspicuous as possible.Today was not a bad day for begging. The men were able to collect enough for a decent meal at the coffee shop down the street and a few candles to light up their lean-to shacks in the alley behind the train station. As the crowd began to die down, they started to pack up their bundles and head for their evening shelter.Just as they were getting ready to leave the street corner, they noticed a man walking toward them. He was obviously a wealthy man–they could tell that from the finely tailored business suit he was wearing and the gold watch chain that adorned his left pocket.

What do you think will happen next in the story?

Continue reading here.


Author:  Glen Penrod

Questions to Talk About

 Were you surprised at the ending of the story?

Do you think the second beggar should tell his friend about the unusual gift?

How do you think the first beggar would feel if he found out the truth about the offering?

What do you think the beggars learned from this incident?

What do you think is the deep meaning of this story?

For additional practice:  Tell this story to a friend or speaking partner.

Talk with your tutor about this topic.

Use the expressions and vocabulary you learned.

Use the related resources below to learn more.

More Speaking Practice

Role play a situation in which you and your partner meet on the street. One is a beggar, and the other is a rich man / woman.

How will you interact with each other?

What will you say?

How will you react?

What will you do after the encounter?

*Story information:

Copyright: Glen Penrod. 2009. Dymon Publications. American Fork, UT USA.Picture source: “The Old Beggar” Lewis Dewis, Bordeaux France. (Wikipedia).

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