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The Banyan Tree

Question D:

  • In the spring, birds of all kinds would flock into the banyan tree’s branches.

  • I would spend the afternoons there.

  • Grandfather, at sixty-five, could no longer climb the banyan tree.

  • I could hide myself in its branches.

  • I could look down through the leaves at the world below.

  • I could read there.

‘Would’ tells us what the author used to do, or what used to happen.

‘Could’ tells us what the author was usually able to do, or grandfather is now not able to do.

Choose would and could to replace the italicised words in the following sentences.

Grandfather says, in the old days,

1. elephants were able to fly in the sky, like clouds. They were also able to change their shapes. They used to fly behind clouds and frighten them. People used to look up at the sky in wonder.

2. because there was no electricity, he used to get up with the sun, and he used to go to bed with the sun, like the birds.

3. like the owl, he was able to see quite well in the dark. He was able to tell who was coming by listening to their footsteps.


Grandfather says, in the old days,

1. elephants could fly in the sky like clouds. They could change their shapes. They would fly beh…

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