Have you heard the one about the chicken and the frog? How about the one about the firing squad? And the one about the parrot who didn't want to talk? See if you can 'tell' the jokes yourself.

Three jokes


Do the Preparation task first. Then go to Text and read the poem or story (you can also listen to the audio while you read). Next go to Task and do the activity.

Audio icon Download audio 1.3MB (right click & save)

The chicken and the frog

One morning a chicken walked into a library.
It went up to the desk and said "Book! Book!"
The librarian gave the chicken two books, and it left.
Half an hour later the chicken returned.
Once more it approached the desk and said "Book! Book!"
This time the curious librarian followed the chicken.
She followed it through the streets to the park.
It went into the park and down to the lake.
It gave the books to a big fat frog.
The frog opened a book and looked at it.
Then it said "Read it!" and threw the book into the water.

The firing squad

Two men were travelling together in a foreign country.
One night they heard gun-shots and lots of shouting.
Next morning they were told that a revolution had broken out.
They were arrested and accused of being spies.
They were sentenced to death by firing squad.
The first man faced the guns …
“Ready! Aim! …”
“Earthquake!” he yelled, and the gunmen panicked.
In the confusion he made his escape.
The second man faced the guns …
“Ready! Aim! …”
"Ah … Fire!” he yelled!

The parrot

A man went into a pet shop one day.
“I’d like a parrot that talks”, he said.
“I’m sorry sir, but you have to teach your parrot to speak.”
So he chose a parrot and took it home with him.
Two weeks later he returned to the pet shop.
“My parrot still doesn’t speak”, he said.
“Ah, that's a shame. Buy this mirror. He’ll look at himself, and talk.”
The man bought the mirror and went away.
Two weeks later he returned a final time.
“My parrot is dead”, he said.
“I’m sorry, sir – but tell me, before he died, did he say anything?”
“Yes he did. But only one word.”
“Really? Which word was that?”

Task 1

Put the lines of the joke in the correct order.


Task 2

Put the lines of the joke in the correct order.


Task 3

Put the lines of the joke in the correct order.




First place- The firing squad
Second place- The parrot
Third place- The chicken and the frog:maybe I haven't understood this joke. please explain me

these exercise was very difficult and it take me 30 minutes but it was nice....i like it....

 Thanks britishcouncil 
I very like this site. 
Thanks a lot to all!

I am having some problem in downloading the audio.
Thank You,

 Hi Sesu64

Really sorry about that but the audio link was out of date. I've replaced it now and it should work.

Thanks for letting us know.

Jack Radford

The LearnEnglish Team

Second Joke(The firing squad) is good.

what mean guns/?pleas

Hi Khaoula,

I'm afraid I don't really understand what you're asking. Do you want to know the meaning of 'gun'? If so, a gun is a weapon that fires bullets, pistols, shotguns, are all types of guns.

I think that you meant something else though. PLease explain a bit more and I'll try to help.


Jack Radford

The LearnEnglish Team

these tupe of exercises are veri important for writing skills