Session 4

Vocabulary: 8 uses of 'cry'

Enjoy our version of Rumplestiltskin - and learn 8 different ways to use the word 'cry'.

Wayiitiwwan marii boqonnaa kana keessaa

Wayitii marii qabxii 4

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    Activity 1
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    Activity 2

Activity 2

What will happen to the new queen?

What will happen to the new queen?

How do you think the story ends?

A) The queen loses her child
B) The strange little man takes all the gold 
C) The queen finds out the little man's name
D) Something else

To do

Watch the video and find out which option is correct. And listen out for three more uses of cry.

Vidiyoo daawwadhuuti shaakala kana xumuri

Barreeffama agarsiisi Barreeffama dhoksi

Hello again. I'm Darren. Let's find out if turning a roomful of straw into gold will impress the king – and why a little man is so keen to help a girl perform this incredible trick…

Next morning, the king is overjoyed by what he sees but still thinks he can get even more gold. He's been crying out for a woman who can make him this rich, so he promises her that this time, if she succeeds, she will be his wife. You know what happens next?! The little man appears offering to help her – but this time, in return, he makes her promise that if she becomes queen, she is to give him her first child. Creepy! Reluctantly, she agrees.

Now the king is very impressed and he marries the girl and she becomes queen. But a year later, when she gives birth, the little man arrives demanding the baby. When the baby starts to cry he says "if you can find out my name within three days, you can keep your child."

The challenge is on and she asks everyone across the land if they know the man's name but nobody knows.  It's not until the third day that a messenger reports finding a little house in the mountain where a ridiculous little man was dancing round a fire singing about having the queen's child and being called Rumplestiltskin.

'Aha!' the queen thinks. That's it – and she asks the little man. He's furious because she is right. "Oh, for crying out loud" he shouts and in his rage he pushes his right foot hard into the ground creating a big deep hole which he falls down, down, down into, crying out...and is never seen again. Wow, he was angry!

So the queen keeps her child – but I'm not sure she really wanted to marry the king. I blame her father! Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the story and will join me for a very different one very soon. Bye for now.

To do

So, the correct answer was C) the queen finds out that the little man is called Rumplestiltskin. He gets so angry that he makes a hole in the ground by stamping his foot and falls in!

Now something you must be crying out for - a fun quiz to practise the different uses of cry. Good luck!

What's the use of 'cry'?

5 Questions

Choose the best expression with cry to fill each gap.

Baga gammadde! Qormaata xumurteetta
Excellent! Great job! Carraa badaa! Qabxii argatte:
x / y

Over to you

How was that? Now it's time for you to tell us a story! It can be a true story or an imagined one - but it must be your own original work. Try to use as many of the phrases with cry as possible:

  • a far cry from
  • cry
  • a shoulder to cry on
  • cries
  • cry your eyes out
  • crying out for
  • for crying out loud
  • crying out

Email your story to us at Make sure you write 'cry story' in the subject line and in your email too. Unfortunately, we can't give individual feedback, but we do read every email, and we’ll publish our favourites here or on our social media sites.

Session Vocabulary

  • a far cry from (C1)
    very different to

    cry (A2)
    produce tears from her eyes

    a shoulder to cry on (C2)
    a person who listens to your problems and gives you sympathy

    cries (B1)
    says loudly

    cry your eyes out (C2)
    get very upset and cry a lot

    crying out for (C2)
    really wanting or needing

    for crying out loud (C2)
    (said to express anger)

    crying out (C2)
    shouting in fear or pain


    A1 = Beginner
    A2 = Elementary
    B1 = Lower Intermediate
    B2 = Higher Intermediate
    C1 = Towards Advanced
    C2 = Advanced