Reading Comprehension - Passage: 'Joy Adamson: Living with Lions'

Contributed by:
A passage on how the famous naturalist Joy Adamson describes her experiences raising a lion cub named Elsa.


Ip Adamson: .
The day that would change Joy Adamson’s life forever began like any other.
Joy was at home with her husband, George. At that time, George was the
senior game warden in Kenya, a country in East Africa.
Ayoung African tribesman came to the house to see George. The upset:
young man was in tears because a lion had killed his brother. The lion had
crept into their camp the previous night and had dragged the brother into
the bush. Tribal members had searched for the missing man all morning. The
gruesome fact was this: all they could find were his hands and feet.
The man wanted George to track and kill the lion that had eaten his brother.
George and Joy set out at once with the tribesman. They set up camp in the
area where the attack had taken place. While Joy set up her easel and began
to paint, George drove off with another hunter to search for the lion.
At the site of the lion attack, the hunters found lion tracks and followed
them up into the hills. Suddenly, a large lioness appeared on a rocky
outcropping, springing directly into the hunters’ path. She growled fiercely
at them. It seemed to George that she was about to attack, so he quickly raised
his rifle and fired a single accurate shot. The lioness fell to the ground, dead.
‘As George examined her body, he heard
some tiny mewing sounds coming from
crack in the rock outcropping. He reached
deep into the crack and pulled out three
tiny lion cubs. They were so little that their
eyes had not yet opened.

Now George understood why the lioness
had been so fierce! She was protecting her
babies from human threat. She was not the man-eater he had been seeking.
Sadly, he took the three little cubs and drove back to camp.
When George got out of the car with an armful of tiny, squirming baby
lions, Joy dropped her paintbrush and immediately took over. Joy had cared
for many young animals over the years, but she had never tried to raise baby
lions! Nevertheless, she was determined to save these babies. She and George
took them home and looked after them.

Reading * EMC 4533 + ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.
The lion cubs, all females, grew rapidly. Joy adored the cubs, but she did
Not want them to become too attached to her and George. They tried to raise
the lions as naturally as possible, hoping
to someday return them to the wild.
They allowed the cubs to roam freely
in the woods around their home.
But as the lions grew bigger and
stronger, Joy and George realized
they could not keep three large lions.
They decided to present two of the 1
Cubs to a Z00; they would keep the
smallest cub, which they named Elsa.
Joy and George took Elsa with them on safaris. They embarked on lessons
to teach her to hunt and to fend for herself. Although Elsa learned quickly, she
Femained much attached to Joy and George. She slept in their tent at night
and sometimes even took naps with Joy in her camp cot.
Elsa liked to play with her human friends, but as Elsa grew to her adult size,
this play became dangerous. More than once, Elsa knocked Joy to the ground,
biting and scratching her. Joy and George both realized that it was time to find
Elsa a new home. They knew she needed
a wild home where she could live
the life she was born to lead.
It took some time to find
the right location. Finally,
Joy and George decided to
release Elsa in Meru Park at
the foot of Mt. Kenya. They
found a remote location
and turned Elsa loose.
The Adamsons stayed
in the area for a time,
helping Elsa get food.
In time, she learned to
hunt for herself and
became more and more

©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp. « Reading * EMC 4533

Joy and George were thrilled when Elsa mated with a wild lion and had three
cubs of her own. Now they were certain she would truly become a wild lioness.
However, in spite of this success, Elsa never forgot Joy and George. Whenever
they camped nearby, Elsa would come to visit, rubbing her head against their
legs in greeting.
When her cubs were old enough to travel, Elsa brought them into camp to
meet Joy and George. But Joy and George kept their distance from the cubs.
They did not want them to get too used to people. They wanted Elsa to be
content in her new life with her lion family.
Joy missed Elsa, but was happy that she had made a successful life as a wild
lion. She believed that Elsa’s story was important. Joy wanted to write a book
about Elsa, but she was uncertain of her skills as a writer. She asked a friend to
write Elsa’s story. Her friend encouraged her to write the book herself since Joy
was the person who had raised Elsa and who had loved Elsa enough to set
her free.
So Joy set up a typewriter and went to work. The book she wrote about
Elsa, Born Free, became a huge international bestseller. Joy traveled all over
the world, signing books and giving talks about Elsa. She also talked about the
importance of saving the wild animals of the world. she spoke about the need
to preserve the places in which these animals lived.

70 Reading * EMC 4533 * ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.
‘A movie about Elsa, also entitled Born Free, was made in 1964. The movie
was very popular. But some people complained that the movie was not
realistic. \t did not show all the problems and difficulties that Joy and George
experienced in their efforts to retum Elsa to the wild.
However, the movie brought Elsa’s amazing story to the attention of
millions of people. It helped many people take a new interest in the survival
of the Earth's wild animals.
Joy lived out her life in Africa, working with wild animals. She wrote more:
books about her experiences. She traveled around the world speaking on
behalf of wildlife, She encouraged others to work for conservation. She gave
much of the money
she made from
her books to
this cause.

‘At the age of 70, Joy's life ended tragically. She was murdered by a poacher
in Meru National Park. But Joy's work lives on. Her heartfelt interest in animals
and her great love for Elsa helped inspire a worldwide movement to protect.
wildlife. For Joy Adamson, there was no greater gift than the beauty and spirit
of wild animals, living free.

©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp. * Reading + EMC 4533

6. Skills: Recalling Dotaits
Questions About

Fill in the circle that best answers cach question.
1, George Adamson found three lion cubs
® huddled in a hollow log
crouching under his car
© hiding in a crack in a rock
© clinging to the branches of a tree
2. Joy and George Ict the lions roam freely near their house because they
® wanted the lions to be as free as possible
wanted the lions to scare people away
© hoped the lions would run away
© didn’t want to care for the lions
3. Joy and George tried to teach Elsa to
® play ball
® do circus tricks
© hunt for her own food
© attack anyone who bothered them
4. After Elsa was released in the wild, she
@ lived alone and would not interact with other lions
® often came to visit Joy and George
© forgot all about Joy and George
© disappeared
5. Joy wrote a book entitled
® Taking Care of Animals
My Friends, the Lions
© Elsa, the Lioness
© Born Free )
6. Joy traveled the world speaking about the needs of
@ children
® wild animals
© artists
© musicians
72 Reading * EMC 4533 * ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.

7. ‘Skill: Recalling Dotatls; Making Inforoncos
1. Why were Joy and George so pleased when Elsa had three little
cubs of her own?

2. Why did Joy Adamson write books and give speeches?

3. What concerns did some people have about the movie Born Free?

4. In what way did the movie help the cause of wildlife?

5. Why is it important to preserve wild animals and the places where they live?
Give at least two reasons.

©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp. * Reading * EMC 4533

Skille: Understanding Word Meaning
Find cach bolded word in the story and read the sentence in which
itis found. Write the letter of the correct definition on the line
in front of cach word.
remote a. a ledge of rock that sticks out from its surroundings
international __. expeditions; trips
gruesome C. free; self-regulating
outcropping d. earlier; prior
previous @. distant; isolated
safaris f. protect; save
——_— independent _g. place
———_ realistic h. truthful; sensible
content i. global; worldwide
warden J. custodian; supervisor
—_____ preserve k. happy; satisfied
————_ location |. horrible; grisly
poacher Mm. someone who hunts illegally

4 Reading + EMC 4533 + ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.
9. ‘Skils: Undorstancing Word Meaning from Contoxt
1, Joy and George taught Elsa to hunt her own food and fend for herself”
Fend means

2. The hunters went to the site of the attack to try to find the lion.
Site means

3. When she reached her adult size, Elsa was big and strong.
Adult means

4. The survival of wild animals depends upon human protection.
Survival means
5. Because she loved animals so much, Joy was determined to save the lion cubs.
Determined means
6. The Adamsons embarked on a program to make the young lions independent.
Embarked on means

(©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp. * Reading * EMC 4533, B
10. Adverbs tell when, where, why, or how something
happens. Many adverbs end with the suffix -ly.
Fill in each blank with an adverb from the box.
suddenly fiercely finally quickly
truly tragically sadly freely
|. The large shaggy dog growled _____ at the burglar.
2.. We wanted to get through with our chores
could go outside and play.
3. Hannah whimpered as fat tears rolled down
her cheeks.
4. The unexpected thunderstorm appeared
5. many people were killed by the hurricane.
G. Ron gave of his time because he wanted to help
the children.
7. Jesse felt sorry for his mistake.
8. After practicing for days, Marie __________ learned to ride
her bike.

16 y tae Reading * EMC 4533 + ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.
11. killa: Idontitying Vorbs
Verbs are words that describe action.
In each group of four words below, three are verbs that mean about the same thing.
One word is not a verb. Circle the word that is not a verb.
Look at the 8 words you circled. All are
adjectives nouns
(©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp. + Reading + EMC 4533
adverbs prepositions



Old Bragwynn the Pirate was the most dastardly villain to ever roam
the seas. At least, that is what he told everyone who would listen.

When Bragwynn docked his boat and entered some coastal haunt, he
set about to brag of his exploits. “Of all the passengers on all the ships I
have taken, not a single one remains alive!” he boasted. It wasn't exactly
false. It was just that Old Bragwynn had never taken a ship before. Thus,
he had not yet had the opportunity to decide on the fate of a passenger.
Bragwynn had
spent many days out
at sea, most of them
paddling around
in his rowboat with
his dog, One-Eyed
Jack. Jack, it should
be noted, had two
perfectly good eyes.
The reason for his
name was unknown,
even to the old pirate.
Sometimes, the pair
would spot a ship
and row toward it
with the intention
of commandeering the vessel. The ships, however, always seemed to be
heading in the wrong direction.
No matter how hard Old Bragwynn rowed, or how hard the wind blew
into his little makeshift sail (which consisted of a broomstick and an old
bedsheet), he could never get close enough to get aboard. Bragwynn
concluded that the sea goddesses must be against him. The inferiority
of his vessel never occurred to him.
Reading * EMC 4533 + ©2005 by Evan-Moor Corp.