This is another post in my Read & Answer series of articles where I give a short passage in Japanese followed by one or more questions to test your understanding. You can see more about this series here, and a list of the other articles in it here.
This will be Level 2, which is the second easiest level and targets those who have studied roughly Japanese one or two years.
I’ve given a list of Kanji words with their definitions below the answer choices, so you only need to be able to read hiragana and katakana for this exercise. For more advanced students, I suggest trying to answer the questions without looking at the word readings and meanings.
I’ve tried to make this passage in the style of a classic Japanese children’s fairytale. Let me know if you like it.
How would you describe the old man’s feelings?
Answer Choices 1
a) He is happy
b) He is troubled by something
c) He is lonely
d) He is lost
What is the old man lacking?
Answer Choices 2
a) A place to live
d) A creative idea
What does the word 少し refer to in the 3rd sentence?
Answer Choices 3
a) The extent of the old woman’s emotion
b) The old man’s attention span
c) The amount of money the old money has
d) A short span of time
What is the purpose of the word 「こう」 in line 3
Answer Choices 4
a) It expresses that the old lady is thinking out loud.
b) It refers to the dialogue line on the next line (line 4).
c) It refers to the subject from the previous sentence.
d) It enhances the politeness of the sentence.
How would you describe the old woman’s response to the old man.
Answer Choices 5
a) Strict and realistic.
b) Kind and empathetic.
How would you describe the old man’s reaction to the old woman’s suggestion.
Answer Choices 6
a) He seems unconvinced and unsure of what to do.
b) He is upset, but remains quiet.
c) He agrees and decides to take action.
d) He seems to have not heard the old woman’s statement.
Bonus question: What part of the old woman’s dialogue has a feminine connotation to it?
Word readings and meanings
昔: mukashi (a long time ago)
お爺さん: ojiisann (old man, grandfather)
お婆さん: obaasan (old woman, grandmother)
日: hi (day, sun)
困る: komaru (to be troubled)
お金: okane (money)
言う: iu (to say)
少し: sukoshi (a little)
考え込む: kangaekomu (to think deeply about something)
笑う: warau（to laugh, to smile)
毎日: mainichi (every day)
入る: hairu (to enter, to come in, etc.)
納得する: nattoku suru (to understand, to be convinced)
就職活動: shuushoku katsudou (searching for work)
始める: hajimeru (to begin)
決める: kimeru (to decide)
Bonus: 「のよ」 in end of the the 4th line sounds feminine.
If you enjoyed this exercise, please comment or like this post so I know to continue writing these. Also, please let me know if you want more or less difficult passages.