Session 4

Vocabulary: 9 uses of 'cut'

Sit back and enjoy the story of Little Red Riding Hood - and learn nine different ways to use the word 'cut'.

Sessions in this unit

Session 4 score

0 / 10

  • 0 / 5
    Activity 1
  • 0 / 5
    Activity 2

Activity 1

Little Red Riding Hood part one - 5 uses of 'cut'

A tale of bravery, adventure - and a big bad wolf...
The English word cut has many meanings and uses. In this session, we bring you BBC Learning English's own version of the classic fairytale Little Red Riding Hood - and we've found many different ways to use the word cut in it. 

To do

We've cut the story in half. As you watch part one of the story, listen out for the different uses of the word cut - and decide whether this summary of the story is correct or wrong:

  • When Little Red Riding Hood arrives at the cottage, Grandma is waiting for her in bed.

Watch the video and complete the activity

Show transcript Hide transcript

Hi there. I'm Mariam. And today I've got a story that might sound a bit familiar to you: it's a tale about bravery, adventure and a big bad wolf.

We begin in a faraway land, in a big, deep forest where the birds are singing and the sun occasionally peeks through the leaves, lighting up the forest floor below. This is where Little Red Riding Hood is walking, wearing a big red cloak. She's carefully carrying a basket of fruit to her Grandma's. She wanted to take a cake but Grandma's been told to cut out sweet things as she's getting a bit fat!

Anyway, to cut a long story short, Little Red Riding Hood is stopped in her tracks by a mean-looking wolf. "Where are you going, little girl?" asks the wolf. "Well, my Grandma's not very well so I'm going to visit her, because she doesn't have anyone else there, and my mum says…" Little Red can talk! The wolf cuts her short and says "Sorry, I've got to go, send her my best wishes, bye!" and he disappears into the forest.

The wolf might be bad but he's not stupid. He takes a shortcut through the trees to Grandma's house, breaks in and locks Grandma in a cupboard. Then, he puts on Grandma's clothes and jumps into her bed, waiting for Little Red Riding Hood. You can imagine how stupid he looks - but that's how the story goes!

A short while later, Little Red Riding Hood arrives at the cottage and walks into the bedroom. She's not the smartest of girls and doesn't realise that that's the cheeky wolf. She is surprised, however, by her big eyes and says "Grandma, what big eyes you have!" The quick-thinking wolf replies, "All the better to see you with, my dear." "Hold on... Grandma, what big ears you have!" By now, the wolf is losing his patience a bit and thinks 'cut to the chase' but he still mutters: "All the better to hear you with, my dear." By now, Little Red is a little suspicious but still continues with one final comment: "Grandma, what big teeth you have - are they false teeth?" "No…" cries the wolf, "These are for eating you with." And with that, he pounces on Little Red Riding Hood. As you can imagine, Little Red Riding Hood screams her head off.

What's the wolf going to do next? I'll tell you another time. Bye for now.

To do

How was that? The summary wasn't quite right - when Little Red Riding Hood arrives at the cottage, the wolf is in bed, pretending to be Grandma.

Now, have a go at our quiz to check you know the first 5 uses of cut.

Little Red Riding Hood - the story so far...

5 Questions

Let's check your understanding of the story - and the words and phrases with cut. Decide whether each statement about the story is true or false. Look at the vocabulary box if you need help.

Congratulations you completed the Quiz
Excellent! Great job! Bad luck! You scored:
x / y


It's time to find out what happens next - and to learn some more uses of cut! See you on the next page.

Session Vocabulary

  • cut out (C1)
    stop eating

    to cut a long story short (C1)
    to only talk about the most important or interesting details

    cut (someone) short (C2)
    stop (someone) from finishing what they are saying or doing

    shortcut (B2)
    different route or direction that saves time

    cut to the chase (C2)
    don't waste time, just get to the important bit