Module C – Weeks 1 to 17

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Click here for WEEK 2
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Click here for WEEK 5
Click here for WEEK 6
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Information about Core Knowledge (R) Teacher Read-Alouds (“Listening And Learning”) that should occur daily, in parallel with below AnyOneCanRead READING and PHONICS activities. Resources for:

Fairy Tales And Tall Tales:

Click this link for WEEKS 1 TO 3 



Early Asian Civilizations:
Click this link for WEEKS 4 TO 6


The Ancient Greek Civilization:
Click this link for WEEKS 7 TO 9 


Greek Myths:
Click this link for WEEKS  10 TO 12 


The War Of 1812:
Click this link for WEEKS  13 TO 14 


Cycles In Nature:
Click this link for WEEKS  15 TO 17 



Lesson 1 – Stories Misc
“Dino Lady” Zoe 

NEW WORDS: Arizona, Las, Phoenix, Vegas, Zoesaurus, chemicals, dino, dino’s, dinos, dinosaur, dinosaurs, effort, facts, fossil, grade, photos, proved, salvage, scientist, search, sites 

Our hero is named Zoe. She is the well-loved “Dino Lady.” She became popular by the time she was 30 years old!

One reason was this. She knew that kids love these strange creatures that we call “dinosaurs.” But there were too few dinosaur books that KIDS could read. Most of the books were pretty much just for grown-ups. The words were too hard. The sentences were too long.

First, the word “dinosaur” is, itself, hard to get! So she gave them a nick-name. Now, kids use this word all over the U.S.: “dinos.”

Second, the names of dinos are all long and hard to get. So, the people who print her books have done a cool new thing. You come to a crazy-long dino name in her books. You just touch the word for their name. The book says its name to you from a small speaker! You can do this in birthday cards. Why not books, too?!

Third, think about most dino books. All the facts and stories use words that are way too hard for 1st-, 2nd-, and 3rd-grade kids. So, Zoe used a whole lot of good words that work well for young kids. Her books are both fun and easier to read.

What else did Zoe do to be so well-known? Well, you see, Zoe is a scientist. She knew that it was hard to get dino bones out of the ground. You find them in fossil beds. They’ve been there for millions of years!


Zoe worked hard to find ways to get the bones out more safely. She came up with new tools, brushes, and chemicals. These are now used on dino searchsites all over the world.

Zoe proved these out a few years ago at a dino site out West. Zoe drove from where she lives, Phoenix, Arizona, to the Valley of Fire. That’s an hour from Las Vegas. It’s a great place to take photos. There are all kinds of strange-looking rocks. But Zoe was there to hunt for dino bones!

This was one of the hardest sites from which to get dino bones out of the ground. Too often, the bones would turn to dust. But the new set of tools worked like magic! They could now salvage bones that no one had been able to save in the past.

A month after she got there, Zoe had a big surprise. She had come to a new place that might have a lot of bones. They had been there for a few days. This was a spot that was worth taking more time with.

She knew that she had found the neck of a dino. But the bones looked nothing like ones that she had seen before. She moved the dig toward the dino’s head. It took many long, hard-working days of effort. But they finally got to where they could see the whole head.

No one could believe what they saw! You could hear the dig team cheer Zoe from a mile away. Zoe The Dino Lady had just found the first dino, ever, that had THREE eyes!

This will come as no surprise to you. This new dino was named after the great young scientist. It is called the “Zoesaurus!”

Lesson 2 – 3-Letter Vocab-Builder

NEW WORDS: China, Deb, Eva, Evy, Fay, Flo, Gil, Gio, Gus, Han, Ian, Ida, Ike, Io, Irv, Jeb, Jed, Jo, Jon, Jupiter, Kai, Kat, Kay, Keb, Kia, Kip, Len, Leo, Les, Lew, Lex, Lil, Lio, Liv, Mae, Mao, Mei, Mia, Mo, Nia, Paz, Rae, Rom, ands, arf, bakers, blues, buts, dam, dud, eel, eh, er, ewe, fin, gal, gap, hah, hairdo, haw, heh, hem, hic, hip, hm, ho, hon, ifs, ivy, jaw, jog, lag, lo, mm, nah, nip, oar, orbits, solo


Look bub, get out of here.

Here’s a cup of tea, Eva.

Evy, I hear it’s flooding at the dam.

Deb and Dee went home.

Dim the lights, Flo.

Dip your toe in, Gil.

What’s up, Doc?

I see a doe and her mom.

Don caught an eel!

Arf,” said the dog.

Dot bakes great cakes.

Gio, your bad joke was a dud.


Look Gus, our dog dug up an old pipe.

There’s a bug in my ear, Hal.

Han Solo is the best guy in Star Wars.

Eh, what did you say, Ian?

Ida, there’s no such thing as an elf.

Ike said, “Er, I haven’t done that yet.”

Io is a cool moon that orbits Jupiter.

Irv, a girl sheep is a “ewe.”

Hey Jeb, did Fay fib to you?

I think that’s a fig tree, Jed.

Get out Jim, I see a big fish fin!

That’s a tall fir tree, Jon.


I think Gay caught the flu.

Let’s fry up some catfish, Kai!

Len, do you know the blues singer, Keb Mo?

My mom drives a Kia Soul.

Leo, that pigpen made me gag.

She’s a good old gal!

Les, go through that gap in the hills.

God is good!

Can you buy me some gum, Lew?

Let’s play in the gym.

Hah, I knew it, Lil!

That joke made me laugh, “Haw, haw!”


Heh, what did you say, Lio?

Liv, you should sew up the hem on that cloth.

Uh-oh, Lou, I ate way too much, “HIC!”

Mel is a “hip” guy.

Hm, should we do that, Mal?

Mao was the leader in China for a long time.

Ho, ho, ho, that’s funny, Mei.

Mia, get rid of that weed with your hoe.

Hi, Hon, I’ll be home in a bit.

Huh, why would you say that, Nat?

They live in a small hut, Ned.

Ick, I can’t stand that!

Nia, it’s icy outside.


No ifs, ands, or buts about it!

They stayed in a nice inn.

Do you know the ins and outs of this, Paz?

Rae, there’s too much ivy on the house.

The boxer gave him a right jab.

Pass me that jar of jam, Rom.

He hit me in the jaw!

I want to fly in a jet.

Jo, are you going on a jog?

We should get a jug of milk.

Kat and Kay went to the pond to swim.

This key is for the door.

Kip, don’t lag, and keep up with the line.


Don’t break the law!

Lee and Lex are bakers.

I bit my lip!

I lit the fire.

Well, lo and behold, it’s Mae!

I love to eat mac and cheese.

Mm, that mug of tea is good!

That old nag isn’t nice!

Nah, I don’t want more to eat.

Nan got a nice hairdo today.

That cat will nip at you!

Don’t nod off to sleep.

What kind of nut would do that?

Let’s cool off by that oak tree.

I need that oar inside the boat.




That arb took some unnecessary risks and lost a lot of money in the process.


Dr. Frankenstein’s machine gave off an electric arc.


Betty, did you know that you are my best friend?


The dog yapped loudly, “Arf, arf!” 


How many pairs of animals were on Noah’s Ark?


The nurse asked, “Which arm would you like your shot in,” and I said, “NEITHER!”


Mom, look at what I drew in art class today!


Dad, we learned to read bar charts in math class today.


That car is driving WAY too fast!


I found out how far away the sun is from Earth; it’s 93 million miles away!


A gar is a creepy looking fish with a long snout and sharp teeth.


Har-har, that was so funny that I forgot to laugh.


Could you please pass me the jar of orange marmalade?


The lousy weather this weekend is going to mar our plans for outdoor activities.


In today’s golf round, I got a par on five different holes!


The mad scientist was experimenting with electric arcs between electrodes.


If I hear any more “arfs” from your noisy dog, I fear that I shall go crazy.


The pirate captain yelled, not unexpectedly, “ARGH, ye mateys!”


In U.S. colonial times, small arks were built to be used as riverboats.


My aunt does fundraising for the arts around our city.


If you cut yourself on barb wire, it’s going to really hurt.


My friend Barb is going to college with the hope of becoming a doctor.


The famous writer William Shakespeare was often called the “Bard of Avon.”


This soup tastes so bad that I’m afraid I’m going to barf.


Our dog is so docile that she doesn’t even bark at strangers.


Why is that cow mooing so loudly in the barn?


William Barr was U.S. Attorney General under two different presidents.


This year, my Halloween costume is going to be Bart Simpson.


Our family is trying out a new low-carb diet.


Her overly-pampered poodles don’t have a cark in the world.


My Uncle Carl is really good at archery.


Carp is an important food fish in many countries.


Our new teacher is named Mrs. Carr.


Have you ever heard the saying, “don’t upset the apple cart?”


Before the early 1900s, Russia’s monarch was called a “Czar.”


It’s too dark in here for me to see where I’m going.


One of my favorite movies as a kid was “That Darn Cat.”


I just saw a deer dart through the woods.


In this part of the zoo, you’re going to see lots of farm animals.


What’s that smell; did Danny fart again?!


That rock star’s garb is outrageously garish.


Coach Garr is having us practice the basics, like blocking and tackling.


My dog will gnar at you if you put your hand near his food bowl while he’s eating.


The sailor called the thick wet fog along the seacoast a “haar.”


The dancers found that getting their moves right was really hard work.


My favorite Christmas carol is “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing.”


Kids, it won’t harm you to turn off the TV and go outside to get a little exercise!


Our daughter is learning how to play the harp.


A male red deer is called a “hart” after it turns five years old.


Beth Hart has one of the most powerful rock singing voices that I’ve ever heard.


Long ago, a Scandinavian chieftain was called a “jarl” (pronounced “yarl”).


My high school friend Karl became a family doctor.


Dad and I are building a fast go-kart.


Wow, look at this wrinkled old knar in this tree trunk.


My Gran has an old pastry recipe that calls for using lard to make it more flaky.


I think that’s a lark in our birdbath.


The Thompsons named their new baby boy “Marc.”


Put a pencil mark here on the wall to show me where to hammer in this nail.


My big brother Mark got to fly in a helicopter!


The farmer used some marl as fertilizer since his soil was deficient in lime.


My dentist, Dr. Marr, said that my teeth are in great shape.


Honey, can you stop at the Quick-Mart on the way home and get a gallon of milk?







Lesson 3 – Poems And Rhymes OBM

NEW WORDS: Susie, Virginia, abolish, admit, alit, auburn, baboon, canary, capture, chigger, cockle, contrary, crowing, delighted, dragonfly, dumplings, feathers, fie, fingernail, fisherman’s, funnels, gales, gauze, harbor, highness, mermaid, monk’s, pause, popping, postman, salve, seahorse, sermon, shimmers, slender, spilling, stiffened, stillness, stir, strawberries, tropical, twitter, whiteness, wilderness, wound

Mister Postman
Hello there, Mr. Postman, I’ve been waiting here for you!

There’s something, Mr. Postman, that I want to say to you!

You bring my mother letters, Daddy, too, and Auntie Bea.

Are you never, never thinking that you should leave one for me?

With your pack all spilling over full of letters on your back,

You must have just one letter for Miss Virginia Black!

Poem by Olive Beaupre Miller

Dance, My Top
Oh, if my top would only spin, a monk’s gown I would give to him.

Dance my top, go dancing.

You do not care for dancing? You do not care how my grain is ground!

You do not care how my mill goes round!


Eager Mister Chigger
Eager Mister Chigger, so tiny and red,

I have to admit, that I wish you were dead.

You hide around the ground, where I walk or sit,

And before I know it, upon my body you’ve alit!

I don’t know it at the time, you’re already digging in,

Hours later, I’m aware, you’re way beneath my skin!

First it’s a bump, then later it’s a lump,

And like the spell of a witch, it’s become a terrible itch!

Well, I hate to say, all of you, I can’t abolish,

So to salve your wound, I must use fingernail polish!


The Lost Shoe
Doodle doodle doo, the Princess lost her shoe.

Her highness hopped, the fiddler stopped, not knowing what to do.


Water Boys
Oh, well, for the fisherman’s boy, that he shouts with his sister at play!

Oh, well, for the sailor lad, that he sings in his boat on the bay!

Poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson

The Man In The Wilderness
The man in the wilderness asked me, how many strawberries grew in the sea.

I answered him as I thought good, as many as red herrings grew in the wood.


The Harbor
Look, see the boat! Where? On the sea! Swish through the waves it goes, swish through the sea!

Look, see the smoke. See its funnels red! Hark! Hear the whistle! “Woo!” the whistle said.

Poem by Olive Beaupre Miller

As it fell upon a day, in the merry month of May,
Beasts did leap, and birds did sing, trees did grow, and plants did spring.

Poem by William Shakespeare

A Baby Sermon
The lightning and thunder, they go and come;

But the stars and the stillness are always at home.

Poem by George Macdonald

A dragonfly is very thin, straight and shining like a pin.

With narrow wings of stiffened gauze, and in the air he likes to pause.

And look at you, with popping eyes, he shimmers like a small surprise.

Poem by Florence Page Jaques

Little Kitty
I love little kitty, her coat is so warm,

And if I don’t hurt her, she’ll do me no harm.

I’ll sit by the fire and give her some food,

And kitty will love me, because I am good.

Poem by Jane Taylor

A Home For Teddy
Oh, I’ll build a square with my pretty red blocks,

And a yellow square, Susie, for you.

I’ll pile up and pile up the bright blocks of green,

You lay on the blocks of blue.

Now see what we’ve done with our great big square?

A house! A house for Teddy Bear!


The Old Baboon
I went to the Animal Fair, the birds and the beasts were there.

And the old baboon, by the light of the moon, was combing his auburn hair.


Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary
Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?

Silver bells and cockle-shells, and pretty maids all in a row.


Naughty Kitty
“Kitty, kitty, dear kitty,
Tell me, where have you been?”
“Meow, meow, in the garden.
Meow, with doggie I’ve been.”
“Kitty, kitty, dear kitty,
Where did you wet your chin?”
“Meow, meow, in the pantry.
Meow, on the shelf I’ve been.”
“You drank the milk in the bowl.
Now kitty, was that nice?
SCAT! You naughty kitty,
Run and chase some mice!”


First Snow
Snow makes whiteness where it falls. The bushes look like popcorn-balls.

And places where I always play, look like somewhere else today.

Poem by Mary Louise Allen

Kitty-Cat And The Dumplings
Kitty-Cat ate the dumplings, the dumplings, Kitty-Cat ate the dumplings.

Mama stood by, and cried, “Oh, fie!” Why did you eat the dumplings?


Mix A Pancake
Mix a pancake, stir a pancake, pop it in the pan.

Fry the pancake, toss the pancake, catch it if you can.

Poem by Christina Rossetti

Mary’s Canary
Mary had a pretty bird, feathers bright and yellow,

Slender legs, upon my word, he was a pretty fellow.

The sweetest note he always sung, which much delighted Mary.

She often, where the cage was hung, sat hearing her canary.


It’s Spring
The cock is crowing, the stream is flowing,

The small birds twitter, the lake does glitter,

The green field sleeps in the sun!

Poem by William Wordsworth

A Sea-Song From The Shore
Hail! Ho! Sail! Ho! Ahoy! Ahoy! Ahoy!
Who calls to me, so far at sea?
Only a little boy!
Sail! Ho! Sail! Ho!
The sailor he sails the sea.
I wish he would capture a little seahorse,
And send him home to me.
I wish, as he sails,
Through the tropical gales,
He would catch me a sea-bird, too,
With its silver wings,
And the song it sings,
And its breast of down and dew!
I wish he would catch me a little mermaid,
Some island where he lands,
With her dripping curls,
And her crown of pearls,
And the looking glass in her hands!

Poem by James Whitcomb Riley

Dragon Smoke
Breathe and blow white clouds with every puff.

It’s cold today, cold enough to see your breath, Huff!

Breathe dragon smoke today!

Poem by Lillian Moore


Lesson 4 – Dale-Chall Vocab Builder

NEW WORDS: Australian, Disney’s, Gramps, Lutz, October, Raphael, Tish, Wales, aboard, anthill, anybody, apron, arise, arithmetic, armful, attack, automobile, awfully, backward, bandage, beam, beating, besides, billboard, bind, birth, blackboard, blank, blush, boast, bookkeeper, bottle, bracelet, brake, bullies, bumblebee, butterscotch, cackle, cannon, canoe, canyon, carload, catbird, cereal, champion, charm, cheap, chocolate, chorus, churn, cigarette, classmate, claw, clerk, cloak, clover, codfish, colonel, comic, concern, conductor, connect, coop, copper, cord, couch, crank, cranky, curtain, dagger, daybreak, defeat, defend, defense, depend, devil, dinner’s, dismiss, diver, doorstep, drank, drill, eastern, eldest, electricity, elsewhere, enemy, erase, eraser, exact, exchange, eyebrow, factory, false, family’s, fashioned, fist, flashlight, flesh, floor’s, flutter, footprint, fractures, freeze, freight, frighten, furniture, goody, govern, grandchildren, grandfather, grandma, grandson, grandstand, grapefruit, gravy, halt, haste, hasten, hawks, hayfield, headache, heal, heart’s, hilltop, hitch, holder, homely, honeybee, hopeless, hospital, insult, jacks, jewels, judge, keen, kiddos, kindness, lasagna, laundry, leftovers, lemonade, liver, loser, lover, magazine, mailbox, manger, milkman, mines, misty, morrow, moth, murder’s, navy, neighborhood, onions, ore, overhear, overturn, package, painting, parade, pavement, payment, pencil, pierce, piggy, pineapple, playmate, policeman, ponies, post, postage, potatoes, prepare, prison, prove, public, punch, puss, pussycat, quart, queen’s, raisin, rapidly, re, reap, rebuild, reward, rocky, roller, roosters, rosebud, royal, ruler, rumble, rusted, saddle, sausage, saves, schoolmaster, seal, season, self, setting, settle, seventy, shalt, shan’t, sideways, sin, skater, slave, sleeve, slipper, slippery, snapping, snowy, sod, spank, spook, sprinkle, stitch, strawberry, strict, sweater, sweetheart, tardy, teaspoon, thirteen, throne, thy, tinkle, tiptoe, tireless, toothpick, tower, train’s, tramp, triple, undress, unfair, unhurt, unkind, unknown, unwilling, uptown, valuable, vegetable, victory, waken, washtub, wayside, weakness, whirl, whiskey, whom, wicked, worker, wove, yarn, youngster        

His birth came early.

That freight train’s loud.

Sit in the grandstand.

Here’s a postage stamp.

I depend on you.

Pass the cereal.

The floor’s slippery.

She turned thirteen.

Ali was The Champion!

Let’s sing the chorus.

Hawks have a keen eye.

What a rocky road!

You’re tardy to school!

Yum, sausage gravy!

Stop at the post office.

Can I hitch a ride?

A honeybee stung me.

What a cute youngster.

See you in the morrow.

That cat will claw you.

He’s so unkind!

That’s a copper wire.

Coach is a slave driver.

He’s such a loser!


I’ve got a headache.

Gran’s so old-fashioned.

Fix that with an eraser.

Arise and shine, kids!

You can’t go backward in time.

Golf season is over.

I’ll reward you for working hard.

She’ll boast about her grades.

Don’t waken the monster!

Halt, who goes there?

We’re from that neighborhood.

She’s in the hospital.

Roosters crow at daybreak.

Do your own laundry!

Don’t undress here!

Freeze these leftovers.

Nice charm bracelet!

The Colonel yelled, “ATTACK!”

Try using a toothpick.

We’ll defeat their team.

They’re from eastern Maine.

That bumblebee scares me!

Let’s resod our lawn.

Soap’s in the washtub.


Those jewels are valuable.

Start the letter, “To Whom It May Concern.”

Get a flashlight battery.

I hate that witch’s cackle.

October 31 is Halloween.

Tish joined the Navy.

She’s a homely girl.

He’s an enemy spy.

Electricity can shock you!

The cow’s in the hayfield.

The bus went uptown.

Erase the blackboard.

Fido chewed my left slipper.

It’s a snowy day.

Don’t spook me out!

Pull this cord.

It’s a cloak and dagger story.

It’s vegetable lasagna.

She’s a tireless worker.

He’s a diver on the swim team.

Chocolate’s my weakness.

He’ll govern with an iron fist.

It’s a Raphael painting.

Ponies are frisky.


Saddle up the horse.

My sweater is warm.

Bullies punch people.

Here’s the ice cream churn.

The Conductor yelled, “All aboard!”

Dinner’s codfish tonight.

He wove a wicked web.

Is that a U.S. or Australian catbird?

Read this magazine.

My shirt sleeve ripped.

We made a float for the parade.

He drank whiskey at the bar.

I read “Puss ‘N Boots.”

Put a rosebud on the table.

The Royal Family’s in Wales.

In your defense, you tried hard.

When will this heal?

We saw a beam of light.

Stop at a wayside inn.

Did you overhear me?

There’s a box at the doorstep.

A stitch in time saves nine.

They’ll rebuild their anthill.

I’m rapidly tiring.


My heart’s beating fast.

Bind up this package.

Mom’s apron is stained.

What famous baby lay in a manger?

The skater did a triple Lutz!

Thy shalt get to bed, NOW!

She bought it cheap!

Victory is at-hand!

Cats play with yarn.

The pavement is hot.

Gramps was a milkman.

She’s a goody-two-shoes.

Mom’s got an armful of laundry.

The rain’s misty.

Why, you little devil!

Their automobile rusted.

It’s a hopeless cause.

It was a pretty setting.

What an act of kindness!

Get a quart bottle.

Don’t frighten her!

I love Disney’s “Lady and the Tramp.”

There’s iron ore in those mines.

This little piggy went to market.


I’m boiling potatoes.

Watch that moth flutter about.

I go to public school.

Let’s sell lemonade.

What’s up, pussycat?

She’s driving a carload of kids.

He lit a cigarette.

Can you prove that?

We heard the rumble of thunder.

My grandfather is fun.

Here’s a 4-leaf clover!

I’m unwilling to do that.

I shan’t stay for dinner.

We hiked at the Grand Canyon.

Yuck, liver and onions!

Is that pineapple juice?

Is anybody home?

Put this in the mailbox.

His playmate came over.

That hilltop has a great view.

Measure it with this ruler.

Pass the Raisin Bran.

I’ll dismiss class in 5 minutes.

My mind went blank.


That’s strawberry ice cream.

Sprinkle these on the cake.

Dad works in a factory.

Gramps taught me to play jacks.

He’s the eldest of 3 sons.

I’ll prepare dinner now.

Here’s my arithmetic homework.

Put this bandage over the scab.

Seal this letter.

You reap what you sow.

This was unknown 100 years ago.

The baby dropped her bottle.

That policeman stopped traffic.

Murder’s a sin.

Sleep on the couch.

Defend against that tight end.

The clerk gave me change.

Where’s my pencil holder?

Watch the water whirl around.

A snapping turtle bites!

The bookkeeper was good at numbers.

Compound fractures pierce your flesh.

That schoolmaster was strict.

We have 3 grandchildren.


I tipped over my canoe.

Don’t insult me!

Hasten outside, there’s a fire drill!

I heard the tinkle of wind chimes.

He turned seventy.

She got new roller skates.

He’s locked in the castle tower.

We don’t spank kids.

ur grandson is a pilot.

This grapefruit is sour.

I’ll take a teaspoon of sugar.

I made my last payment!

Let’s put an ad on a billboard.

She made me blush.

The cannon fire was loud.

It’s unfair to punish me!

She’s behind the curtain.

Dust the furniture.

She’s his new sweetheart.

What do I get in exchange?

I’m a chocolate lover.

Dad’s cranky today!

He’s a classmate of mine.

Our left front brake needs fixing.


Grandma slept well.

Turn the crank to start it.

Besides, I made a promise!

It’s a large animal footprint.

Is that true or false?

The judge let her off easy.

I must clip my right eyebrow.

Yum, butterscotch pudding!

A fox is in the chicken coop.

Connect the dots.

Buy me a comic book.

The queen’s on her throne.

I’m awfully sorry!

He’s unhurt from the car wreck.

Settle down, kiddos!

Tiptoe, don’t wake her!

He’s in prison for 5 years.

You can’t overturn my decision.

Move with haste to finish this.

What’s the exact time?

Turn the TV sideways.

I’ll have to find it elsewhere.

She shows good self-control.






That police officer is called a “narc,” and he goes after drug dealers.


Remember that you can’t park the car next to a fire hydrant.


You call a young salmon or codfish a “parr.”


A man named Jack Parr was the second host of the famous TV show called “The Tonight Show.”


Mom, Dad, I got a big part in the school play!


That’s too small a cut to leave a scar on your leg.


The two boxers are going to spar for about a half-hour.


Benedict Cumberbatch is going to star in a new Avengers movie as Dr. Strange.


The leak in our roof is so bad that we need to put a tarp up there.


Mr. Tarr is going to pay me to mow his lawn once a week.


Be prepared to pucker, because this cherry juice is very tart.


Look Mom, there’s a deer in our back yard!


Our cat loves to play with a ball of yarn.


If my dog sees a cat, he will yarr at it.


My colleague at work yelled “aargh!” after our boss dumped more work on her.


The scientist turned on the power, and the two electrodes arced.


The submarine commander asked, “Are the torpedoes armed?”


The queen’s dress had a lace barbe around the neck.


That toddler has a weak stomach, and he probably barfs at least once a week.


My dog barks at anything that moves, even a gnat if it flies past him.


The ballet dancer was warming up by stretching at the barre.


Dad is complaining that he has too many carbs in his diet.


My granny carks about everything that she sees on the evening news.


I love the art of the great children’s book illustrator Eric Carle.


Mrs. Conner constantly carps at her poor husband.


Everything on this dinner menu is a la carte.


Tom, can you bring in all of the empty shopping carts that are in the parking lot?


It’s time to carve the turkey for our Thanksgiving dinner.


Clark Kent hid in the stairwell to get into his Superman uniform.


Can you bring out more texture in your darks in this black & white photo?


I hit the bullseye three times in tonight’s game of darts.


We’ve never had a cat that farts, but our new kitten seems to have a little problem with that!


Try to put the Christmas tree lights in the box so that they don’t gnarl up too much.


My dog will gnarr at anyone who rings the doorbell.


The store manager decided that he needed to hire a security guard.


My grandpa harks back to his childhood memories quite often.


Harmonicas are often called “blues harps.”


We just saw two harts scampering through the woods.


High blood pressure can lead to a heart attack.


All of the go-karts in today’s race were painted with bright colors.


A flock of larks flew over the football field.


Thankfully, Marc’s grades have improved a lot.


Timmy, could you please erase those marks on the blackboard?


Uncle Mark’s new motorcycle is really cool.


Most of the local shopping marts now have the new soda brand that I like.


Two of the city’s narcs cooperated to catch a drug dealer.


We like to rent cabins in our state’s State Parks system.


We need to parle with the pirate captain to see if he will release the hostages.


Class, we’re going to parse this complex sentence into its various components.


I couldn’t understand parts of this recorded interview because of lots of background noise.


Mom is pleased with the scarf that we got her for her birthday.


There’s a scarp a couple of miles from here that is great for rock-climbing.


Be careful that you don’t scart your new shoes on these rough-edged rocks.


The king said, “I’m not going to let that lackey’s smarm influence me in any way.”


My big sister is super smart.


At the campfire, Dad told us a scary tall tale about a snark that would take away children from a wooded campsite.


When the dog let out a vicious snarl, I backed away from it quickly.


If conditions are really dry, a single spark can start a forest fire.


Although there was breathable air on the newly discovered planet, the astronauts found general living conditions to be pretty stark.


In the popular Marvels comic, Tony Stark becomes the superhero Iron Man.


Bart Starr was the Packers quarterback who helped them to win the very first Super Bowl.


Dad moaned, “Uggh, I think that I’m going to have to start on a new diet.


Tarps were covering lots of roofs in the aftermath of the hurricane.


The waitress recommended the cherry or blueberry tarts for dessert.







Lesson 5 – Stories Misc

The Balloon Drone
NEW WORDS: Cummings, Defcon, Tyler, ample, ante, balled, balloon, balloons, bloated, bobbling, bomb’s, bomber, boor, brains, briefer, brute, bulge, bully, canine, capeesh, cleverly, cloaking, clodpoll, codes, could’ve, crafty, culprit, cunning, dab, deserved, device, devious, dolt, drench, drones, dropping, enlarged, faked, frig, harass, honest, imagined, insults, launch, life’s, loading, loathsome, lout, oaf, options, outsmart, panting, pelted, photon, pitchers, plunged, pokes, portrait, prodded, quest, quipped, rank, relentless, remote, sewer, sopping, splatter, splutter, spray, sputtered, stealth, tactic, tech, technology, thrives, tilt, torpedoes, tumid, unleash, upped, vetting, vigilante, whack, wily, wrongs, yelling, yesterday

I’m Tyler Cummings. And I’m SO sick and tired of Billy Bob Smith. He’s one foot taller than me. And I bet that he weighs thirty pounds more. His face is bloated. His eyes bulge. He thrives on picking his nose. He’s always spitting.

Billy Bob Smith! What a boor! I think he crawled out from under a rock. And the good Lord gave him little for brains. He’s a lout, an oaf. He’s a brute, a dolt. My best friend learned a great word for him. He’s a “clodpoll!”

He picks on me each chance that he gets. He calls me a sissy in front of my class. He pokes me, hard, with his finger. He gets an inch from my face. Then he insults me. His breath smells like the sewer. I’ve never smelled such a rank odor. My friend calls his breath “putrid.” Or “rancid.”

Look! I’m just not that big. So, I’m the size kid that a bully likes to harass. Well, I am NOT a sissy. No one else in class thinks I am, either. I’m just small. He’s likely a bully because of his home life. He needs someone to pick on. It makes him feel better about himself. I know things aren’t good in his family. That’s not his fault. I’ll give him that. The house he lives in is a mess. You can hear yelling inside there, all the time. I’ll be honest. I kind of feel sorry for him. But he’s got no excuse for picking on me!

Now, he’s never hit me. He’s balled his hand into a fist. He’s faked like he was going to. Kind of like an “air punch.” But he’s never landed a blow.


I talk to my Dad about him. Dad says, “life’s tough, Tyler. You have to learn to stand tall to bad people like that. You want to try to outsmart them. You just want them to leave you alone. But I have a firm rule. NEVER, EVER do anything to hurt them. Two wrongs don’t make a right! Understand?” I’d nod my head, ‘yes.’ And Dad would repeat. “That is the rule! Got it?! Mess with them a little, yes. Hurt them? NO! Your quest is to ‘best’ them. Just get them off your case. Make them go away.”

Well, last Saturday, I had a bit of luck. There was an opening in the clouds. Dad had a thought for me. We might find a way to get Billy Bob to ignore me. Dad took me down into the basement. He showed me something. He said it was way cool. Boy, was he right! Dad can be devious! He’s a GREAT dad!

Where Dad works, they make drones. He’s one of the big bosses there. They’re vetting a new kind of drone. He said we could test it with Billy Bob. He knew we’d have ample fun with it. And no one would get hurt. Just messed with!

This drone had new technology. It was silent while it was flying in the air. You couldn’t hear it at all! But it got better. It could be right over you. And you couldn’t even see it! It used more new tech to do that. It had a camera pointed at the sky. It had an LED screen at its base. The camera-view fed the screen. So, you’d look up and just see the sky! Now, if you were fifty feet away, you’d see the drone. It’s “cloaking device” worked only when straight overhead.

Then Dad built a box to hold things. You’d tilt the drone. Doors would open on the box. Things could drop out, like, well, WATER BALLOONS! It could hold twenty at a time! Like I said, Dad’s cunning. He’s wily. I’m glad he’s not my enemy!


Dad added to the design. Soon, the remote control gave me options. I could drop one, five, or all twenty balloons at a time!

I started slow. I had pitchers of water in the frig. I’d put them in the freezer before loading the balloons. The spray would always be ice cold!

Billy Bob lived on the next street over. His big chore was to walk his dog. The poor canine was old. He needed to pee, a LOT. So, Billy Bob was ALWAYS outside. He’d be by himself, walking his ugly mutt. What a pitiful dog! What a loathsome bully.

I got crafty. I’d hide by cars. I just had to be on the other side of the street. I’d drop one balloon at a time. This was good practice. At first, I wasn’t a good shot. He’d hear the splash on the ground. He’d look around. But he wouldn’t see it. I had to get closer in. I had to get right on top of him.

Practice makes perfect. I got good, fast. I could pilot the drone more cleverly. I brought it in from behind him. That way he’d never see it. And it was as quiet as a mouse! A stealth bomber! I could now drop the balloons within three feet of him. That would get his pants and shoes wet. He saw the balloons, now!

I soon became a pro. It took just a few days. I could now almost always land them perfectly. BOOM, smack dab on top of his head! BAM! SPLASH! He’d look up. He’d see nothing. Oh, the look on his puffy face! It was to die for! The brute deserved it.

A few days of this went on. I was getting to him. He’d try to keep the walks briefer. His face was a portrait of fear. He was always looking up. He’d try to see where the balloon was coming from. But then he’d look down. Tilt, drop, BOMB’S AWAY! I was too fast for him. SMACK, SPLUTTER, SPLATTER! I was driving him NUTS!


At school, I could tell a lot about him. He wasn’t getting much sleep. He had tumid bags under his eyes. He was getting worse grades than ever. But his picking on me did NOT let up. He HAD to know that I was the culprit. He had to know that I had the power to SOAK him! Little old me! Tiny Tyler. I had to wake him up even more.

So, I upped the ante. I played to win. Victory would be mine! I started dropping five balloons at a time. He’d get sopping wet. Water would drench his glasses. He couldn’t see until he dried them off. Then I’d whack him again! He’d now scream at each attack.

I had to unleash just one more tactic. I couldn’t let him know that I was the mad bomber. Not just yet. We were at DEFCON ONE. I pelted him three more days in a row. I imagined reading out launch codes in my head. Then, “THREE! TWO! ONE! FIRE PHOTON TORPEDOES!” I’d now drop all twenty balloons at once. He may as well have plunged straight into a pool. And, with all of his clothes on!

Yesterday, I walked up to him. I said, “Billy Bob? Why are your clothes always so wet?” His eyes enlarged. How could I know that? He was on the street alone. I wasn’t there to see it. Little did he know! But he didn’t speak a word.

Then I pulled a water balloon out from behind my back! I prodded, “do you want this to stop? Would you like to stay dry?”

His mouth was gaping wide. His teeth looked like those of a hippo. He sputtered, “You?! How?!”

I quipped, “My secret, buddy boy. I OWN you! You’ll NEVER know how I do it. So, here’s the deal. It can stop. I can return peace and calm to your life. I can keep you dry. You just have to do one thing. NEVER pick on me again! NEVER, EVER AGAIN, until the end of time. CAPEESH?”

Then I held out the balloon in my hand. I dropped it on his left shoe. I turned. I walked away. I led one more relentless attack over the next few minutes. Billy Bob was bobbling home. I could hear him panting. I let go of five balloons, four different times. I made sure that my warning would stick!

He got the message. He’s never picked on me again.

I could’ve stopped using the drone. But why not become a superhero? I became “Tyler, the vigilante!” I went after every other bully at school. They dropped like flies. I got ’em one at a time. Now, no one is scared of bullies at MY school!


Lesson 6 – Poems And Rhymes

Holiday Poems
NEW WORDS: Blixen, Dasher, Donder, Nicholas, Thanksgiving, arose, aside, bundle, chubby, coursers, dancer, dapple, dimples, dread, drew, droll, eagles, encircled, exclaim, fallen, flung, grandfather’s, grandmother’s, hoof, hound, hurricane, kerchief, laying, lively, luster, midday, miniature, mount, nestled, obstacle, pawing, peddler, prancer, prancing, rapid, reindeer, saint, sash, shutters, sleigh, stirring, sugarplums, tarnished, twinkled, twinkling, twist, visions, vixen, wink, wondering, wreath

Some Things That Easter Brings
Easter duck and Easter chick,
Easter eggs with chocolate thick.
Easter hats for one and all,
Easter Bunny makes a call!
Happy Easter always brings,
Such a lot of pleasant things.

Poem by Elsie Parrish

Thanksgiving Day
Over the river and through the wood,
To grandfather’s house we go.
The horse knows the way,
To carry the sleigh,
Through the white and drifted snow.
Over the river and through the wood,
Oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes,
And bites the nose,
As over the ground we go.
Over the river and through the wood,
To have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring,
Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!
Over the river and through the wood,
Trot fast, my dapple-gray.
Spring over the ground,
Like a hunting-hound!
For this is Thanksgiving Day.
Over the river and through the wood,
And straight through the barn-yard gate.
We seem to go,
Extremely slow,
It is so hard to wait!
Over the river and through the wood,
Now grandmother’s cap I spy.
Hurrah for the fun,
Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!

Poem by Lydia Maria Child

The Night Before Christmas
‘Twas the night before Christmas,
When all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring,
not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugarplums danced in their heads.
And mama in her kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave the luster of midday to objects below.
When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be Saint Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name.
“Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Donder and Blixen!
To the top of the porch! To the top of the wall!
Now Dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the housetop the coursers they flew,
With a sleigh full of toys and Saint Nicholas, too.


And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof,
The prancing and pawing of each tiny hoof.
As I drew in my head and was turning around,
Down the chimney Saint Nicholas came with a bound!

He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes, how they twinkled, his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up in a bow,
And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed like a bowl full of jelly.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him in spite of myself!
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!

He sprang to the sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

Poem by Clement C. Moore






It feels like it’s as cold as the North Pole outside today.


What in tarnation is that creature crawling on your shoulder?


Our teacher, Ms. Vance, let us watch a movie about the Revolutionary War today.


I’m doing lots of exercises to strengthen my abs.


There are a bunch of ads in today’s paper for used cars.


Al’s coming over to play at 4:00.


I think that Ed’s trying to grow a beard.


Aunt Em’s niece is named Dorothy.


Deb has a mild case of the flu.


Greg deposited all of his Christmas check money in his savings account.


Dad knows all of the ins and outs of the industry that he works in.


The audience erupted with “ohs” and “ahhs” when the magician finished his trick.


That opera singer has lots of “ons and offs” and performs inconsistently from night to night.


Three plus five adds up to eight.


The bartender told me that they offer seven different kinds of ales.


There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it; she was definitely the better player today.


Have you seen Ann’s colorful new parakeet?


Those three arbs made lots of trades on the stock market today.


I saw Barry waving his arms at me in the middle of the crowd.


Did you see that Aunt Babs got a funky new hair style?


The coach talked with the team about the goods, the bads, and the uglies of our performance in today’s game.


Mom, what’s in those shopping bags?


We heard loud bams on the front door, as my brother was trying to get inside, safe from the storm.


Our school’s dress code bans us from wearing certain types of clothing.


That little kid just loves to play on the monkey bars.


Kids, you need to make your beds before you go out to play.


Our dog always begs for scraps from the dinner table.


Mom put Ben’s teddy bear in the washing machine because the dog had drooled all over it.


Bev’s made the decision to take ballet lessons.


As our toddler continues to grow, I need to purchase larger sized bibs for him.


The bids for this famous painting keep going higher and higher.


The cook emptied the garbage bags into the trash bins behind the diner.


Bob’s taken up a new hobby, and he’s now into stamp collecting.


Did you know that cranberries grow in bogs?


There they are; I see my bubs across the street.


My Uncle Bud’s one of the tallest men I’ve ever seen.


Finally, I see some buds on the flowers in our garden.


Don’t you just love the animated movie “A Bug’s Life?”


We need to call an exterminator, because there are just too many bugs getting into our house.


The coach yelled, “Come on you lazy bums; get out there and run three laps around the track!”


I’ll bring the hot dog buns for the picnic.


I keep trying to hail cabs, but none of them will stop for me.


Her daughter said, “Mom, there are two boys in class that are just simply cads!”


I hear that Uncle Cal’s going to join Dad’s bowling team.


The cams in this engine need to be lubricated.


Honey, please get three cans of tuna fish at the grocery.


Collect all of our corn cobs and put them into the trash.


At work, most of us feel like we’re just cogs in a wheel.


This employer tries hard to help ex-cons by hiring them to work in his factory.


Those bear cubs are so cute, but if you get near them, the mama bear might try to kill you!


My favorite baseball team is the Chicago Cubs.


Look at all those cows chewing their cuds.


See how Mom just dabs a little bit of lotion on her hands to keep them from getting chapped.


Dad’s a little sunburned from his day out on the golf course.


Lots of dads were with their kids at the park today.


Dag’s favorite sandwich is a corned beef reuben.


We studied beaver dams in science today.


The rumor is that Dan’s about to get a promotion.







Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 
(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

Native Americans

Lesson 7 – Part One

NEW WORDS: America’s, American, Americans, Indians, alike, beads, breechcloths, canoes, cedar, cloaks, coastal, collected, continent, decorated, deserts, distances, elk, fibers, footsteps, forests, fringe, grandparents, harmful, harsh, herds, hogans, hooves, horseback, included, inner, intro, knowledge, leggings, longhouses, moccasins, native, nature, oceans, ovens, paths, paved, preferred, pueblos, quills, roamed, seashells, skirts, tipis, tribes, trimmed, varied, vegetables, wetus, yucca

Chapter One: Intro to Native Americans
It was long ago. Way before we can remember. Before your grandparents and their grandparents can remember! There were no people where we live today. Not yet. There were woods. There were plains. There were rivers. There were lakes. There were deserts. There were mountains. There were lots of birds and fish. There were animals and insects. But there were no people.

That was many thousands of years ago. One day, people came to America. They’re called “Native Americans.” Or call them “American Indians.” They lived in all parts of the continent. Some lived in the desert. Others in the mountains. Some lived in the woods. And others on the coast. They were near the ocean. Desert life was not the same as coastal life. Can you guess why? You’re going to learn why. You’ll see how America’s first-known people lived. Let’s learn about Indians.

Indians needed the same things we need now. Food and water, to stay alive. Shelter, to protect themselves. Weather could be harsh. Wild animals could be harmful. And they needed clothes. How else could they stay warm and dry?


Desert food was different than coastal food. Homes in the woods weren’t the same as those in the desert. Some lived in tipis. Some lived in wetus. Some lived in hogans. Some lived in pueblos. Others lived in longhouses.

Indians had to count on their knowledge of nature. They had to know the Earth. This included plants and the animals around them. They roamed many places. They had to be smart, each place they went. They found ways to borrow, or use, from the Earth. Earth gave them all that they needed to live. Some Indians grew vegetables and fruits. Others hunted buffalo. Some tribes hunted animals from the woods. Others caught fish. Rivers, lakes, and oceans were full of them. Some tribes cooked their food over a fire. Others baked food in ovens. Lots of the ovens were made of clay.

These people also needed water. But there weren’t sinks in their homes. Where did they find water? They collected rain water. And they got water from lakes, rivers, and streams.

Indians had no cars and trucks. There were no buses, trains, or planes. Do you know how they got around? At first, they went by foot. There were no paved roads. Indian paths were made over time. They were made from the pounding of their own footsteps. And from the hooves of animal herds.


Long years passed. They started to ride horses. Some traveled on horseback. Others went in canoes. What if you lived in the woods? You used your feet to make your way through thick forests. What if you lived on open plains. You used the speed of horses. And horses took them long distances. What if you lived near water? You would use canoes.

What about clothes? It didn’t matter where they lived. Indians made all of their own clothes. Women and girls wore skirts and dresses. Men and boys wore breechcloths and leggings. They used things found near them to make their clothes. Some Indians wore clothes made of animal skins. These could be from elk, deer, buffalo, and rabbit. They often decorated their clothes. They’d use beads, porcupine quills, and fringe.

What about in the winter months? They wore coats of animal fur. This kept them warm. Others wore clothes made from trees! They used the soft, inner bark of the cedar tree. These might be decorated with seashells. Others wore clothing made of plant fibers. Cotton and yucca were used. These clothes might be trimmed with animal bones. In winter, they used cloaks to stay warm. These were made from sheep’s wool.

Many tribes used moccasins. They wore them on their feet. But some preferred bare feet.

Our land is rich and varied. You can see that these people were just as rich and varied! They were alike in some ways. They were not the same in others. That’s like the people of America today.



Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

Native Americans

Lesson 8 – Part Two

NEW WORDS: Lakota, Sioux, agile, aimed, arrowheads, arrows, awls, bow’s, buckets, buffalo’s, centers, ceremony, charges, contests, cradles, crashing, designs, earthquake, galloping, glaring, handles, headdresses, herd, highest, hoops, killing, ladles, midst, muscle, nudge, ornaments, paintbrush, paintings, pemmican, perform, pillows, poles, pouches, rawhide, rider’s, robes, sacred, scouts, scrapers, sharing, shovels, sinew, skills, steam, stomping, straightest, stringing, targets, thrust, thunders, tribe, warriors, weapons, winners 

Chapter Two: The Lakota Sioux and the Buffalo

It’s like an earthquake! A herd of buffalo thunders by. Their hooves are crashing. The Earth trembles. Their heads are down. Their horns are thrust forward. Their eyes are glaring. These beasts are frightened. And they’re dangerous!

Into their midst charges a group of hunters. They are brave Lakota Sioux warriors. They’re on horseback. Each man has his spear or arrow ready. He’ll shoot as soon as he gets a bow’s length away. He’ll be almost close enough to touch the animal! Both of the hunter’s hands are busy with his weapons. He must cling to the galloping horse. He uses the strength of his leg muscles alone.

Lakota Sioux hunters killed buffalo. But only as many as they needed. They did this for food, clothing, shelter, and tools. Sharing with others was their way of life. They took the buffalo killed during the hunt. They divided them among everyone in the tribe. Even people who were too old or sick to hunt were given a share.

What was a well-planned buffalo hunt like? Both men and horses had to be well-trained. It took months of hard work to train a horse. The horse had to be brave and fast. It would have to run through a rushing buffalo herd. It would come face-to-face with the buffalo. These were stomping, steam-breathing, hairy beasts! Horses were trained to stop quickly. This was at the nudge of a rider’s knees. Not every horse was brave and fast. So, they weren’t picked to hunt.


Were all boys brave and fast enough to be in the hunt? Not all of them. Boys began to train at a young age. They learned to ride horses. They were good at it by the time they were five. They held riding contests. Who could ride the fastest? Who could jump the highest? Who could shoot the straightest? They let the winners ride with the scouts. The scouts searched for the herds before the hunt.

Boys had lots of practice shooting at targets that moved. They had to move quickly and easily. They learned to be quick and agile. They played games with hoops and poles. Round hoops were made from bent branches. They were rolled on the ground. The hoops would be spun down the hill side. They were as fast as the buffalo. Boys aimed their poles. They threw them through the hoops’ centers.

Rawhide” was wrapped around the hoops. Rawhide is tough, hard leather. It was made from a buffalo’s hide, or skin. It was used by the Lakota for lots of things. Things like drums, rattles, buckets, and ropes. Boiled rawhide was used to make a kind of glue.


The buffalo gave the Lakota so much. The Sioux had everything they needed for life on the Great Plains. That was thanks to the buffalo! Rawhide was tough. But the Lakota found ways to make the hides soft. They’d turn them into soft leather. They would then have lots of uses. Here’s a good one. Women made moccasins, cradles, and winter robes. They made bedding, shirts, dresses, pouches, and dolls.

Buffalo skins helped make their homes. The homes were called “tipis.” They might paint designs or pictures on the skins that they used for their homes. You’d see horse and buffalo paintings much of the time.

And how about the bones of the buffalo? They were made into lots of things. They’d turn them into knives, arrowheads, and shovels. They’d make scrapers, awls (a type of needle), and paintbrush handles. The horns were used, too. They made cups, spoons, ladles, and toys. And they used part of the buffalo’s muscle. That’s called “sinew.” This was made into thread. It was used for stringing bows and arrows. They even used the hair! They made headdresses and pillows. They made ropes and ornaments.

The Lakota had great skills. They knew how to make or get things they needed. Think of all those ways they used each part of the buffalo. There was no waste. And the buffalo meat lasted long after the hunt. The Lakota would make stew with the fresh meat. They also dried buffalo meat. They’d eat that in the winter. This helped when food was harder to find. They pounded this dry meat. They mixed it with buffalo fat. It made a snack called “pemmican.”

For them, the buffalo were sacred. They said special prayers to the animals. They did this before hunting and killing them. Each year they had a ceremony. It was called the Buffalo Dance. They did this at the start of the summer buffalo-hunting season. They still perform this today.







Deb’s mom is in the hospital for some tests.


You’ve got to check out Del’s new Chevy stingray.


Dens of lions are not good places for humans to explore!


I’ve got dibs on one of the turkey legs for Thanksgiving dinner!


Our dog digs lots of holes in the back yard to put bones into.


Dad typically dims the light before we watch TV.


The various dins in the factory are so loud that the workers are required to wear ear plugs for their own safety.


There were at least ten dogs at the dog park this afternoon.


Dom’s dad played college baseball, and he was a pitcher.


I think that Don’s taken a client out to lunch.


In this scene in the movie, the Queen dons her jewelry and her crown.


This is the part of the story where King Arthur dubs Sir Lancelot a knight of the round table.


Roy yelled to his brother, “Those are really cool duds that you’re wearing to the party!”


Are you absolutely sure that you won’t like green eggs and ham?


I bet that at least twenty percent of the trees in this forest are elms.


You are not going to believe how this movie ends!


Did you see that the Engs put up a ‘for sale’ sign in their yard?


My sister is always the first among her friends to adopt new fashion fads.


The Feds converged on the secret hideout of the criminal leader.


Johnny, I’m going to wash your mouth out with soap if you don’t stop telling fibs!


Yum, I think that there are some dried figs in this trail mix.


Look about twenty yards out; are those fins those of sharks or dolphins?


I hate it when the car window fogs up!


I’ll bet that Mrs. Crenshaw gabs about her weird relatives when she comes to dinner tonight.


The King gads about all of his palaces during the year.


Dad gags every time he has to change the baby’s dirty diaper.


My Aunt Gal’s giving a speech at a trade show next week.


I’ll email all the gals to try to set up an afternoon for playing bridge in the next week or two.


Gars are freshwater fish with long jaws and needlelike teeth.


Get me the gibs, so that we can fasten these various parts together.


Our band played one of its best gigs ever last night.


Gil’s gone back to the locker room to get his baseball mitt.


I’m going to ladle gobs of gravy on my mashed potatoes.


The Christian God’s story of creation is told in the first book of the Bible, “Genesis.”


Primitive societies might have thought that the gods were angry when there was thunder and lightning.


The enemy troops started to fire their guns at us.


The British man walked up and said, “How’re you doing, guvs?”


The actresses playing the witches were made up to look like old hags.


Hal’s gone on a fishing vacation.


The grocery is now selling hams for Thanksgiving dinner.


The hems on these two dresses need repairing.


The hogs rushed to their slop buckets.


I love getting hugs from my granny.


Dad always hums while he washes the car.


The Huns were a brutal tribe of conquerors from western Asia.


My grandpa suffers from many bodily ills.


Many inns in this part of the country have gourmet restaurants in them.


I’ve put three different jams on the table for breakfast.


Jan’s probably my very best friend.


Put these jars up on that shelf for me.


Jeb’s in the back chopping up some firewood.


I think that this is Jed’s wallet.


Aunt Jen’s just pulled up in the driveway.


The jibs are now picking up a nice breeze and the sailboat is moving.


Jigs are usually danced in three / four time.


Uncle Jim’s car ran out of gas.


My cousin Jin’s cat got in a fight with a poodle and won.








Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

Native Americans

Lesson 9 – Part Three

NEW WORDS: Chetan, Chetan’s, Mapiya, Mapiya’s, Nona, Tashna, Tashna’s, Winona, adult, allows, attached, beaded, chief’s, connected, continues, copies, cottonwood, cradleboard, deerskin, designed, families, formed, frame, horse’s, importance, joins, leans, mischief, notch, packing, parfleche, pegs, poking, raise, raising, respected, rugs, searching, shorten, sister’s, support, tightens, tipi, tipi’s, toddles, travois, unpacks, upright, worry

Chapter Three: Where’s Winona?
This is Mapiya. She’s a Lakota Sioux girl. Why is she so happy? Every year, she looks forward to moving with her family. They leave their winter camp. They go to their summer camp. It takes a few days to get there. They move here to hunt buffalo. The men do the hunting. All the Lakota families come. This way, they can support the men. They’ll live in this special spot until the days shorten. Fall will come then. And they’ll move back to winter camp.

Let’s learn about Mapiya’s family. With her are her mother, father, and grandma. Her little sister’s named Tashna. Her baby brother’s named Chetan. Remember what we learned about buffalo skins? Their clothes and moccasins are made from these skins. And so are their tipis. Think how easy it would be to move if you had a tipi. You’d carry your house! You can take apart a tipi quickly. You can set it back up in no time. Look at the picture. See the two poles near the horse’s head? There are poles behind the horse. A frame is connected to them. That forms a “travois.” This is a type of sled. It’s used to pull the family’s tipi and their things.

Mom packs and unpacks everything. She works hard to get ready! She planned things out before they left winter camp. Mom piled up clothes, blankets, and rugs. She placed them onto the backs of horses. Many things were placed onto a travois. Grandma and Tashna rode on a travois! Chetan was in a cradleboard on Mom’s back.


Mapiya packed her toys. She put them in a “parfleche.” This was a small bag. It was made of buffalo hide. She took care of her doll. The doll was named Winona. Mapiya wrapped her doll up in a fur blanket. Then she put her in the parfleche. Mom made Winona for Mapiya. Mom also helped Mapiya make things for the doll to wear. She sewed clothes and beaded moccasins for the doll. She loves her doll!

The Lakota are busy now. They’re setting up summer camp. There are strong winds on the plains. They come from the west. So, their tipis form a circle. All the doors face the same way, east. That’s away from the winds. They’re set up in order of the family’s importance. The chief is in charge of the tribe. So, his tipi is the most important. Mapiya’s dad is a respected hunter and warrior. So, their tipi is near the chief’s.

Mapiya’s family sees some cottonwood trees. That’s where they raise their tipi. Mom finds some shade. She leans Chetan’s cradleboard next to a tree trunk there. He is sound asleep. Mapiya often has to watch over Tashna. But not today. Grandma will look after her. She will take Tashna to visit her aunt. Her aunt’s tipi is all ready. Mapiya is glad to get a break. Tashna’s always getting into mischief!


Mom starts by raising the tipi’s frame. She puts up its long, thin, wooden poles. She ties three poles together. She has a long rope. She pulls the poles upright. They form the shape of a triangle. This makes a strong base. She adds more poles to the frame. She leans them against a notch. The notch was formed by the three poles at the top.

The tipi cover is attached to the last pole. Mom lifts that pole up. It’s at the back of the tipi. She leans it onto the other poles. Mapiya helps her with the cover. They pull it around the poles. This makes the walls of the tipi. They join the two sides of the cover with pegs. This leaves an opening for the doorway. That’s just under the last peg. The tipi is well-designed for the hot summer months. They’ll roll the cover up from the bottom. This lets in air. There’s a smoke hole at the top of the tipi. It can be opened and closed, too. This allows smoke to escape. And it lets more air flow in.

At last, the tipi is ready. Mapiya has her own toy tipi. She wants to set it up for her doll. She took the toy apart before packing it. She’ll put it together now. This will be just as her mom did with the family’s tipi. She copies her mom in her play. That’s a good thing. It helps her learn how to do grown-up things. She’ll be better prepared when she’s an adult.


Mapiya finds the parfleche with her toys. It lies open on the ground. She puts her hand in it. She pulls out the deerskin tipi cover. She grabs its wooden poles. The doll’s fur blanket is there, too. But Winona isn’t in the blanket. Mapiya pulls everything out of the bag. No Winona!

Now she’s worried. She looks through the other bags. But her doll isn’t in any of them. Did she fall out of the bag while on their trip here? Is she lost in the long grass that covers the plains? So much grass! Such a long trip! What if the doll fell out on the way? How will Mapiya find her? Her dad finds her searching for Winona. Mapiya is looking in the long grass.

“Have you seen my doll?” she asks him.

“No,” he says.

“My parfleche was open. Maybe she fell out on our trip!”

“Don’t worry,” says her dad. “I took all the parfleche off of the horses. I did that right when we got here. None were open. Your doll could not have fallen out.”

Mapiya joins her mom. She has made a fire, and she’s starting to cook. Father tightens his bow. Chetan continues to sleep.

“Mother, have you seen Winona?” asks Mapiya.


“No,” says her mom. “I haven’t seen your doll.”

Just then, Chetan wakes up. He starts to cry. Mapiya is good at getting Chetan to stop crying. She’s the best in her family at doing this! She walks to the tree. She makes a silly face. She sticks out her tongue. Chetan stops crying, and he laughs and laughs. And that’s when Mapiya sees them! Two little beaded moccasins. They’re poking upside down from the cradleboard! She tugs hard. Out come the legs. Then the dress. Then the arms and head of Winona! Mapiya gives her doll a huge hug. She asks, “How did you get in there you silly girl?!”

Right then, Tashna toddles over. She comes from her Aunt’s tipi. Grandma is trying her best to keep up. Tashna sees the doll. “Nona!” she calls out. She pulls the doll out of Mapiya’s hand. She sticks the doll back inside Chetan’s cradleboard.

“Now I know who did it!” says Mapiya. “It was Tashna!”

“You’re right!” says her mom. “I’ll need to do something tomorrow. I’ll make Tashna a doll of her own.”



Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

Native Americans

Lesson 10 – Part Four

NEW WORDS: Sioux’s, bear’s, depended, galloped, glimmer, grandpa, grasses, graze, grazed, hammers, horizon, mane, nuzzled, remains, rising, sewn, stored, stroked

Chapter Four: Little Bear Goes Hunting
Little Bear woke up. The sun wasn’t up yet. Today was a key day for him. He just turned ten years old. He could now join in to hunt buffalo. He was not scared. He was excited. He knew that a buffalo can weigh as much as ten grown men. But he didn’t care.

Little Bear was a Lakota Sioux Indian. He lived on the Great Plains. This wide stretch of land was fairly flat. It was filled with grass and buffalo. His home was where his tribe placed their tipis. And that depended on the buffalo. The buffalo lived on the Great Plains, too. There were many large herds of them. But they moved from place to place. Their main food was the grass. They grazed on the wild grasses. They moved to find more.

You’ve learned this. Buffalo was the Sioux’s main food. So, they moved with the herds. The buffalo was fresh meat for the Sioux. The meat could also be dried. They turned it into “pemmican.” Pemmican was stored for later use. It was needed in the cold winter months.


And you know this. Each part of the buffalo had a special use. The buffalo gave them warm fur. Its hair was used to make rope. Their bones were used to make knives, axes, and hammers. Toys were made from the bones. Their skin was also used. It helped make tipis, clothes, bedding, and moccasins. These were jobs for women and girls.

Little Bear learned much as he grew up. He had watched his grandma, mom, and sisters while they worked. They used the buffalo hide to make clothes. They stretched and scraped it. They soaked and dried it many times. They pulled and stretched it. This made it soft. At the end, it was ready to be cut and sewn. They made it into things their people needed. Little Bear’s sister was good at sewing. She made his first pair of moccasins. She added pretty beads to them. They were like a beautiful work of art!

Little Bear dressed quickly. He stepped out of his tipi. The sun was rising. It was just a faint glimmer on the horizon. It was already warm. Little Bear looked around. No one else was up. He was the only one. This made the day seem more important. He sniffed the air. He learned that from his grandpa. He could not smell rain. He could smell the remains of their fires. They had burned out the night before. Buffalo meat had been cooked on those fires. Little Bear could still taste the tasty meat.


He made his way to the horses. They’d ride these horses in the hunt. He knew where the horses liked to graze. Today, he’d ride his brother’s horse. He’d carry a bow and arrow. His father had made them. Little Bear had helped to shape the arrow tip.

Hunting buffalo was hard. They could run like the wind. It often took many men to take down just one of them. Little Bear hoped that he’d be brave. He hoped his father would be proud. He saw how his dad was proud of his brother.

Little Bear stroked his brother’s horse. He whispered to him. He asked the horse to help him catch the buffalo. The horse nuzzled him. The horse’s mane tickled his nose. Little Bear laughed.

Some time passed. The sun was rising. Now, some others were awake. They were coming out of their tipis. He saw his mom. She was breathing life back into their fire. She and his sisters would start to work. They would prepare food for the hunters. Then it would be time to go.

Little Bear went back to his tipi. He sat on the ground. He sat beside his mom. She smiled at him. She brushed his hair. She smiled and wished him well. “You’ll be a brave hunter, just like your brother.” Little Bear smiled at his mom. She was wise and kind. He loved her very much.

Little Bear was joined by his grandpa, dad, and brother. They were all around the fire. They were served tasty buffalo stew.

It was time to go. The men and boys got on their horses. They rode out of their village. Little Bear looked back at his mom. She stood by the fire. She smiled. She put her hand on her heart. Little Bear thought to himself. “She’s telling me I’ll be a brave hunter.” He smiled at his mom. He then galloped off. He would hunt the buffalo for the very first time.








There are lots of jobs open at the mall right now.


Dad usually jogs by the river a couple of times each week.


Poor Jon’s got a bad case of pinkeye.


Jud’s going on vacation next week.


Bring two jugs of milk in from the truck.


Keb’s going to play his acoustic guitar for us.


The bartender changed out two kegs of beer.


Ken’s found a good tailor who makes his suits for him.


Those kids at the far end of the swimming pool surely are noisy!


Kim’s going to try to do a flip off of the diving board.


Which of the two labs should I send this blood sample to?


That marathon runner usually lags behind the leader until the very end of the race.


Did you know that Lars is going to race sled dogs in the Iditarod?


The legs on this old dresser are pretty wobbly.


I think that Len’s going to be able to come to the party.


There’s a cool lens flare from the sun in this photograph.


It looks like Lib’s in her spring cleaning mood for this year.


It’s a bear getting the lids off of the jars for this brand of olives.


I hope that Aunt Lil’s bringing her new puppy for us to meet.


Liv’s going to bring potato salad to the potluck.


I need to put a couple of logs on the fire.


I don’t know why Dad lugs his tuba home from practice when he could easily store it at the church.


The only journals that my dad reads are sports mags.


Mal’s favorite sandwich is a reuben loaded with thousand island dressing.


Make sure that your team mans the phones while we’re in the training meeting.


Check out that man’s crazy hairstyle!


Do you think that humans will ever walk on Mars?


The nurse left my hospital room after bringing me my meds.


Meg’s tennis shoes need new shoelaces.


Let’s go get a bite to eat at Mel’s Diner.


I think Dad went to the men’s room to wash his hands.


In this photo, your mids need brightening a little bit.


We saw Russian MiGs in flight doing training exercises.


Min’s mean Siamese cat scratched me.


There are mobs of people all over the city protesting.


Mom’s gone upstairs to put on her make-up.


The soccer moms all chipped in for a gift for the coach.


The museum had an exhibit of different muds and their soil content from famous rivers around the world.


Put these root beer mugs in the freezer to chill.


Mom has a vase of multi-colored mums that she’s going to use to decorate the dinner table.


At the end of the movie, the detective finally nabs the killer.


Mom always nags me about keeping my room clean.


Have you seen Nan’s pretty new hairdo?


Ned’s finishing up a phone call, and he’ll be with you in a minute.


These cutting tools have diamond nibs on the points of them.


Dad often nods off to sleep when he’s on the couch watching a football game.


I’ve tried lots of nogs, but eggnog is still my favorite.


A bug just flew up my nose!


He’s chewed his fingernails down to little nubs.


My aunt has joined an order of Catholic Nuns.


What must be the odds that we’d run into each other in a city different than where we both live?


That poet wrote a number of odes to springtime.


My brother owes me two dollars.


Rise and shine, and get out of bed, sleepyhead!


That was a wise move that you just made on the chessboard.







Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

ative Americans

Lesson 11 – Part Five 

NEW WORDS: Wampanoags, appanaug, appanaugs, beings, celebration, chats, cornfield, crunchy, grateful, guests, heaps, heating, hiding, hooks, kernels, lobsters, marsh, nets, nuggets, raked, rockweed, saplings, shallow, shelled, shortly, spears, thanked, tide, uninvited, verdant, wading, walker, walkers, watering, wetu

Chapter Five: Bear, Gull, And Crow
It was long ago. There were three animal friends. They lived in a verdant land. There were wild forests. There were green fields. There were shining waters. Gull made her home in the marsh grass. This was near the bay. Bear lived in a cave. It was deep in the woods. Crow had a nest. It was in an old oak tree. It was at the edge of a garden.

Bear, Gull, and Crow got together a lot. They liked to spend time with each other. They enjoyed their long chats. They talked about one thing a lot. They talked about the “Upright Walker beings.” They lived nearby. They called themselves the “Wampanoags.” The animals called them Upright Walkers. That’s because of how they walked. They stayed upright on two legs all the time. And they could not fly.

The Upright Walkers lived in houses. They called each of them a wetu. They were built from bent saplings and tree bark. They could make fire. Wood burned just as if lightning had struck a tree. They grew corn from kernels. They planted it in small Earth hills. These kernels were sweet, crunchy nuggets. (Crow loved to steal them!) They fished in the bay. They used nets, spears, hooks, and lines. They hunted in the forest, too. They used bows and arrows. So, Bear took great care. He tried to steer clear of them.


One day, Gull was talking to Bear and Crow. “I just saw some Upright Walkers. They were wading in the bay. There was a man and a boy. They picked up lots of smooth rocks from the water. They took them to the woods. They said the rocks were for the appanaug. I don’t know what an ‘appanaug’ is.”

Crow thought hard. “An appanaug must be an animal. It might eat rocks!”

“Can there be any animal bigger than I am?” asked Bear. “I want to see this thing. Tomorrow, I’ll go and spy on it.”

The next day came. Bear found the stone pile. He hid behind the trees. He waited. Shortly, the Upright Walkers came. They dug a shallow hole in the ground. They gently laid the rocks into it. Then, they left. Bear waited a long time. But the appanaug did not come to eat the rocks.

Bear got tired and bored. He went to talk to Gull and Crow. He told them what he’d seen. “The Upright Walkers dug a hole. They filled it with rocks. But the thing did not come.”

“Leave it to me,” said Crow. “Tomorrow, I’ll find out what’s going on.”


The next day came. Crow perched in a tree. He was near the rock pit. The Upright Walkers came. They picked up lots of dry wood. They piled it next to the pit. Crow flew to find Bear and Gull.

“The Upright Walkers picked up wood. They will build a wetu for the appanaug!” said Crow. “Those things will live in our woods. It will live in its own wood house of wood!” He thought for a while. “But what if it’s not a nice appanaug?” Bear and Gull were scared.

It was now the next day at sunrise. Gull flew over the bay. She saw the Upright Walker man and boy. They were on the beach. A girl was with them. Low tide had let show some wet sand. It had been under the water at high tide.

The Upright Walkers poked in the wet sand. They looked for small holes. From time to time, water shot up from these holes. They were holes for breathing! That’s how soft-shelled clams got their air. They lived under the sand. Gull watched. The Upright Walkers dug the clams out. They used long sticks to do it. Some clams spit water after they were dug up.


Soon, a large basket had been filled with clams. They would wade back in the water. They filled another basket! In a bit, Gull came to Bear. He was excited. “The Upright Walkers got tons of clams. They said they were glad to have found so many. They were for their appanaug. I hope it does not eat up all the clams and fish in the bay!”

Gull went on. “Next, those Upright Walkers stayed in shallow water. They pulled rockweed off of the rocks.”

“That appanaug will eat rockweed, too,” said Bear. “What will it eat next?” Bear looked back and forth. “Where’s Crow? Wasn’t he to meet us here? Do appanaugs eat crows? I hope not!” But then, there came crow. He was flying to meet them.

“I saw the Upright Walkers in the cornfield!” yelled Crow. “They picked lots of corn. They said it was for the appanaug, TODAY! That thing will come today!” Bear, Crow, and Gull looked at each other.

“Let’s go!” said Bear. Off they set for the rock pit. They got there quickly. They hid among the trees. A bit of time passed. Upright Walkers started to show up. More and more came. There were men, women, and children. They were big and small. They were old and young.


Some of them took the dry wood from its pile. They laid it on top of the stones. One man got the wood to burn. Some stayed by the fire. They kept it going. They raked the burning wood. That way, hot ashes fell into the cracks between the rocks. Soon, ashes covered the rocks. They were heating the rocks up.

Then they laid rockweed on top of the ashes. Steam rose from the damp rockweed. It gave off a sharp smell of salt. They placed heaps of clams on top of the rockweed. They added lobsters, corn, and potatoes. The food was soon loaded on. Then, they covered it with more rockweed. Bear, Crow, and Gull sniffed. The food smelled good. It would be tasty. It made them hungry!

Now they all fell silent. An old Upright Walker stepped up. He said a prayer. It was to the Great Spirit. He thanked the Great Spirit. He was grateful for the animals, plants, rocks, and trees. All the Upright Walkers joined hands. They formed a circle. They all stood in silence. A flute and drum sounded. The Upright Walkers began to dance.

The dancing ended in a bit. The old Upright Walker spoke. “This is a fine day for our appanaug. This is a celebration. It is a time for our people to come together. We can give thanks to the Great Spirit. We can feast on delicious food.


“So, let the feast begin!” The rockweed was lifted off. The Upright Walkers began to load their bowls with food.

Bear, Gull, and Crow looked at each other. An appanaug was not a huge animal. It wasn’t a huge rock-eating thing with big teeth! An appanaug was a party. It was a clambake feast. It was a mouth-watering, nose-tickling feast! They wished they could leap out from their hiding place. They wished they could join in. But the Upright Walkers think them to be uninvited guests.

Just then, a girl walked toward them. She carried a bowl. It was piled high with food! It was the girl that Gull had seen. She’d been digging in the sand for clams. The girl laid the bowl on the ground. She waited to run back to the party. First, she called out some words. “To the birds and animals who share the forest and the bay with us Wampanoags. May you enjoy sharing our appanaug, our clambake feast!”

And that’s just what Bear, Gull, and Crow did!



Native Americans

Lesson 12 – Part Six

NEW WORDS: Atlantic, Lenape, adjust, appeared, bask, baskets, blossoms, burrows, changes, changing, chilly, collect, cornmeal, creation, crop, dugout, elders, firewood, furs, gathered, glided, gourds, guided, harvest, herring, huckleberries, molded, pottery, raccoon, raspberries, ripening, salmon, season’s, seasons, shad, smoothly, snowshoes, storage, strengthened, success, sunflowers, there’d, tobacco, trekked, turkey, wigwams, woodlands

Chapter Six: The Lenape – The People Of The Seasons
Let’s learn about the Lenape. They lived in the Eastern Woodlands of North America. They’d been there thousands of years. They mostly lived on the land. They hunted and gathered. Later, they began to farm. The seasons guided their day-to-day lives. Each season brought changes.

Spring meant warm, bright days. New life appeared all over. They looked for the first signs of spring. They’d see flowering plants and trees. They’d see the black cherry blossoms. These were pretty white blossoms. They made the Lenape smile. Most of the time, the blossoms meant there’d be no more snow. Thus, the animals would soon shed their winter coats.

The spring sun warmed the Earth. So, the Lenape set to work. They planted their spring crops. The men and boys prepared the fields. The women and girls planted the seeds. There were corn, squash, and beans. There were herbs, tobacco, and sunflowers.


The Lenape worked hard in their fields. And the land and sky creatures got to work, too. Some animals woke up from their winter sleep. Some dug burrows. Birds built nests. They prepared for their young. The Lenape and the animals and birds worked side-by-side.

Now the ice and snow were gone. So, men and older boys could go on longer trips to hunt. Most times, they would hunt on foot. Sometimes, they’d branch out further in their dugout canoes, which glided smoothly and silently. They were used in many rivers of the mid-Atlantic.

They would come back. Often, their trips brought great success. They brought back meat. They brought back animal furs. The Lenape would hunt for more than one kind of animal. They’d hunt bear, deer, elk, and raccoon. They’d hunt and trap birds, too.

Spring turned to summer. The sun’s heat was stronger. At this time, the Lenape fished a lot. They’d catch salmon, herring, and shad. They’d guard their ripening crops from birds. The children would gather berries. They’d collect firewood. They’d play in the sparkling rivers. There, they might search for turtles. The turtles liked to bask in the open, soaking up the sunshine.


They would harvest some food in the summer. They’d pick their corn, beans, and squash. Corn was a key food crop. It was ground to make cornmeal. It was used to make bread. They would roast corn in the fire. Kernels were stored for use in the winter.

They would harvest more in the autumn. They gathered gourds and pumpkins. They gathered nuts, roots, and berries. The Earth was rich. There were huckleberries, raspberries, and strawberries. They made pretty baskets. They stored their winter food in them. They strengthened their homes. They lived in wigwams or longhouses. They had to be ready for winter. There would be much wind and snow.

In late fall, more change came. The leaves turned gold, red, and orange. They fell from the trees. The children rushed to catch them. And they might jump in the large leaf piles. Soon, the leaves blew away. They were blown by the chilly winds. It got dark sooner. Winter came.


Now, the Lenape spent more time in their homes. These were called wigwams. They were made from saplings, rushes, bark, and fur. They were warm. Their elders told stories of times long past. They talked of the history of their people. They talked of the Earth’s creation. They talked of the Great Spirit. Women and girls worked hard. They made clothes and moccasins. They used animal skins and turkey feathers. They made pottery jars. These were for both cooking and storage. Men and boys made spears, bows, and arrows.

The sky was often dark. Lots of snow would fall. The children, just like kids everywhere, rushed out to play in it. Even in winter, men and older boys would hunt some. They trekked through the deep snow. They wore snowshoes. They looked for animal tracks in the snow. They hoped to come back with meat. The women and girls would cook up a warm stew or soup.

One season followed another. That’s how it has always been. The Lenape lived their lives around each season’s changes. They would adjust to spring, summer, fall, and winter. They’d change with the Earth’s rhythm of life. The Earth gave them what they needed. They were guided by the Earth’s turning. Their lives were molded by the changing seasons. Such was the way of the Lenape.








If you have an ace among your cards, you’ll win this game.


We watched the epic 1961 movie “El Cid,” starring Charleton Heston and Sophia Loren.


For some people, their nickname for a cigarette is a “cig.”


This cherry ice cream is quite tasty.


Dad, I’m pretty sure that I aced the test.


The losing side in the war had to cede its two most western states to the victor.


Is that your cell phone ringing?


My piggy bank doesn’t have a single cent left in it.


That kind of tasty mushroom is called a “cepe.”


Steer clear of that cete of badgers; those things are vicious!


I’m cutting down on my smoking, and I smoked only two cigs today.


I will cite this quote by Thomas Jefferson somewhere in my book report.


I rolled the dice and they added to the number seven.


Face it, he’s a better tennis player than you.


I’ll have some iced tea with lemon with my lunch.


My parents named my new baby brother “Jace.”


That’s a pretty lace collar on your dress.


Oh no, Lucy has lice in her hair!


I can taste some mace in this delicious eggnog.


Our cat loves to hunt mice that get into our basement.


Our science teacher is named Mr. Nace.


Boys and girls, I’m sure that you will be very nice to Ned, your new classmate.


That marathon runner is keeping up a fast pace.


Puce” is a dark or brownish purple color.


It was a race against time to get to higher ground to avoid the raging floodwaters.


Nothing is better than chicken-with-wild-rice soup seasoned with dill.


My biggest vice is that I absolutely adore eating chocolates!


The handsome man walked over to the shy lady and asked her if she’d like to dance.


Be careful, that two-faced slob will try to cheat you out of money!


The President’s press conference today was a complete farce.


He laced up his ski boots and proceeded to have an afternoon of adventure.


Her new boyfriend is named “Lance.”


The doctor said that he’d need to lance my finger to get that deep splinter out.


The young husband paced back-and-forth waiting to hear if his wife had given birth yet.


Frank raced to the kitchen to eat one of his mom’s fresh-baked cookies.


She chose rance marble as the material for her new kitchen countertops.


Cyrus Vance served both as U.S. Secretary of the Army and as Secretary of State.


As they were making their emergency landing, the plane’s captain yelled, “Brace for impact!”


The two leaders wrote, “It is time to cease this stupid war between our countries.”


The famous actress Grace Kelley married a real prince.


Timmy, will you please say grace before we dive into our Thanksgiving feast?


I’m looking forward to some peace and quiet this weekend.


I’ve never been to that place, but I’d like to go there one day.


I’d love to be able to travel to outer space some day.


Children, let’s all try to trace the outline of a dog on our paper.


At the end of the war, the King cedes territory to his enemies in order to get a peace treaty signed.


Congratulations, our latest lab work shows that there are no more cancer cells in your body!


I’ll give you my two cents worth on how I think that we can solve this problem.


Mom is cutting up some cepes to put into the tossed salad.


They encountered many cetes of badgers on their trip through the mountains.


The eggs were very fresh, and hence satisfactory.


Reece asked Elle to the prom, and she said, “YES!”


I would like to introduce my niece Alice to you.


Yes, I would love a piece of pineapple upside down cake.


I’m putting two cans of diced tomatoes into the stew.


The recipe says to mince the shallots.


Mom riced the cauliflower using a cheese grater.


Dad viced the piece of wood tightly on his lathe.


Vince Lombardi coached the Green Bay Packers to the first-ever Super Bowl title.


I watched my brother wince when the nurse gave him his shot.


What’s my price, with tax, after you give me my discount?


I’d like a big slice of gouda cheese.


I love this cinnamon spice tea.


In a trice, Harry Potter vanished from the scene.


Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me!


We’ve been studying about Ponce de Leon’s explorations of North America.


I got the wrong answer to that, and it makes me feel like a dunce.








Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

ative Americans

Lesson 13 – Part Seven

NEW WORDS: Anishinabe, Blackfeet, Cherokee, Cheyenne, Choctow, Cree, Dakota, Goshute, Hopi, Iroquois, Kachina, Kaw, Massachusetts, Micmac, Mohawk, Navajo, Penobscot, Rappahannock, Shinnecock, Taos, Tuscarora, Umpqua, Ute, Walla, Wampanoag, Wea, Zuni, adobe, alphabet, apartments, celebrations, ceremonies, crafted, dancers, dye, elaborate, exist, farmed, feasts, fishermen, forested, freely, fringed, gatherings, grandkids, harmony, herded, hogan, honor, jeans, juniper, listened, loom, mobile, porcupines, powwows, pueblo, replaced, roofs, sneakers, totem, traditional, traditions, travelers, tribal, turkeys, venison, waterways, weave

Chapter Seven: An Indian Alphabet
Long before you or me,
Native Americans were running free,
Many tribes with many names,
Shared this land for all to see.

“A” is for Adobe bricks. They made Pueblo homes.

“B” is for Buffalo. They roamed the plains.

“C” is for Canoes. They would drift on silent rivers.

“D” is for Drum. They gave rhythm to songs sung long ago.

“E” is for Elders. They led their tribes in prayer.

“F” is for Feasts. Feasts would have lots of clams and corn.

“G” is for Great tales. Tales were told with totem poles.


“H” is for Hopi ovens. They baked warm bread.

“I” is for Iroquois. They had fast runners on the trail.

“J” is for Juniper berries. They were used to dye tan blankets.

“K” is for Kachina dancers. They dance to bring the rain.

“L” is for Longhouses. They were built of logs and bark.

“M” is for Moccasins. They were made of leather and beads.

“N” is for Navajo. This tribe herded flocks of sheep.

“O” is for Ornaments. They made their clothes more beautiful.

“P” is for Powwows. These were held now and then.


“Q” is for Quills. They were from porcupines. They were used for weaving.

“R” is for Rugs. They would weave them on a loom.

“S” is for Salmon. They cooked it in a woven basket.

“T” is for Tipis. They were made with buffalo hides.

“U” is for Under. The Navajo slept under hogan roofs.

“V” is for Venison. This was stew cooked for Iroquois travelers.

“W” is for Wampanoag. They lived in wetus set near the coast.

“X” is for Xs, which decorated tribal dress.

“Y” is for Young children who listened to stories.

“Z” is for Zuni Pueblo who crafted water jars.


Chapter Eight: Native Americans Today
There were many Indian tribes. Here are some of them. Anishinabe, Mohawk, Goshute, and Cree. DakotaChoctow, Hopi, Wea, and Iroquois. Micmac, Crow, Wampanoag, Cheyenne, Blackfeet, and Sioux. There were these and many others. Their tribes were spread out. They lived across the North American continent. Many are still here now.

They lived in open plains. They were in forested woodlands. They were by coastal waters. They hunted, farmed, and fished. This brought to them their food, shelter, and clothing. Rabbits, turkeys, and squirrels dotted the forests. Buffalo, elk, and deer roamed freely. Fish, clams, and whales filled the waterways. These Indians taught themselves so much. They learned how to live in harmony with nature. They were hunters, farmers, and fishermen.

Some Indian tribes still hunt, farm, and fish. But North America doesn’t look the same. So, their tribes don’t just live just off the land, now. Many of their forests don’t exist now. Roads have replaced the buffalo on the open plains. Many rivers don’t have enough fish swimming in them.

So, how do Indians live now? What do they eat? Where do they sleep? What do they wear? What do YOU think?


They still eat corn, squash, fish, and meat. But they buy it at stores. They may use pueblos, tipis, wetus, and hogans. That’s just some of the time. Most sleep in houses, apartments, and mobile homes. They no longer wear fringed leggings and deerskin moccasins. They wear jeans and sneakers. They wear clothes worn by other Americans.

Many Indians still know their tribes’ traditions. The Wampanoag still have clambakes. You can see them on the coast of Massachusetts. They’re like the appanaug that Bear, Gull, and Crow went to. The Lakota have elaborate ceremonies. You can see them on the plains of North and South Dakota. They dance, drum, and sing. The Lenape pass down their stories. They tell them to their kids and grandkids. They still hold their traditional celebrations.

“Powwows” are gatherings of Indian tribes. They’re held across the U.S. The people may dress in native clothes. They’re trimmed with beads, feathers, shells, and bones. It’s there that they honor the past. And they tell family stories.

Here are some more tribe names. Penobscot, Navajo, Cherokee, and Taos. Rappahannock, Tuscarora, and Shinnecock. Kaw, Walla Walla, Umpqua, Zuni, and Ute. These are just a few of the tribes who live in the United States today. They were the first-known people here. And for a long time, they were the only people here. Today, they share their land with people from all over the world.


Lesson 14 – Poems And Rhymes

NEW WORDS: Bonner, California, Grundy, Mexico, Pacific, Solomon, babe, bedclothes, boatman, brilliant, burns, capable, ceasing, christened, cities, clippings, collects, counterpane, coverlet, desire, destroy, displeasing, drippings, dying, emerald, excellent, fabrics, ferry, fleets, flint, gladdest, grumpy, hapless, heaven, hums, leaden, licks, loss, mannerly, monsters, mothers, mourn, mower, opal, patter, pillow, pitter, prairies, purse, railroad, railway, rattlesnake, rejects, ruby, runny, sapphire, shrill, sighs, snoring, something’s, talkative, uniforms, vastly, whilst, woe

Five Little Monsters
Five little monsters,
By the light of the moon,
Stirring pudding with
A wooden pudding spoon.

The first one says,
“It mustn’t be runny.”
The second one says,
“That would make it taste funny.”

The third one says,
“It mustn’t be lumpy.”
The fourth one says,
“That would make me grumpy.”

The fifth one smiles,
Hums a little tune.
And licks all the drippings,
From the wooden pudding spoon.

Poem by Eve Merriam


The Old Woman Of Gloster
There was an old woman of Gloster,
Whose parrot, two dollars it cost her.
But it’s tongue never ceasing,
Was vastly displeasing,
To the talkative woman of Gloster.


The Blind Boy
O say, what is that thing called light,
Which I can never enjoy?
What is the blessing of the sight?
Oh, tell your poor blind boy!

You talk of wondrous things you see.
You say the sun shines bright.
I feel him warm. But how can he,
Then make it day or night?

My day or night myself I make,
Whenever I sleep or play.
And could I ever keep awake,
With me it were always day.

With heavy sighs I often hear,
You mourn my hapless woe.
But sure with patience I may bear,
A loss I never know.

Then let not what I cannot have,
My cheer of mind destroy.
Whilst thus I sing, I am a king,
Although a poor blind boy.

Poem by Colley Cibber

Ferry Me Across the Water
“Ferry me across the water. Do, boatman, do.”

“If you’ve a penny in your purse, I’ll ferry you.”

“I have a penny in my purse. And my eyes are blue.

So ferry me across the water. Do, boatman, do.”

“Step into my ferry-boat, be they black or blue.

And for the penny in your purse, I’ll ferry you.”

Poem by Christina Rossetti

White Fields
In the winter time we go,
Walking in the fields of snow,
Where there is no grass at all.

Where the top of every wall,
Every fence and every tree,
Is as white as white can be.

And our mothers always know,
By the footprints in the snow,
Where it is the children go.

Poem by James Stephens

Whole Duty of Children
A child should always say what’s true,
And speak when he is spoken to.
And behave mannerly at table,
At least as far as he is able.

Poem by Robert Louis Stevenson

An emerald is as green as grass,
A ruby red as blood.
A sapphire shines as blue as heaven,
A flint lies in the mud.

A diamond is a brilliant stone,
To catch the world’s desire.
An opal holds a fiery spark.
But a flint holds fire.

Poem by Christina Rossetti

Sewer And Sewer
My mom is an excellent sewer.
My dad is a capable mower.
The fabrics she rejects,
And the clippings he collects,
Both of them, they dump down the sewer.


It’s Raining, It’s Pouring
It’s raining. It’s pouring.
The old man is snoring.
He bumped his head,
And went to bed.
And he couldn’t get up in the morning.


Solomon Grundy
Solomon Grundy,
Born on a Monday.
Christened on Tuesday,
Married on Wednesday.
Took ill on Thursday,
Worse on Friday.
Died on Saturday,
Buried on Sunday.
This is the end
Of Solomon Grundy.


Policeman Joe
Down at the corner stands Policeman Joe.
He tells cars when to stop or go.
We stand waiting. Cars rush past.
Cars and trucks and buses whiz by fast.
But they all have to mind Policeman Joe.
Unless he lets them, they can’t go.
Up goes his hand! Hear his whistle, shrill.
Slow down, stop! They all stand still!
Then pitter, patter, patter, go our feet.
At last, we children cross the street!

Poem by Olive Beaupre Miller

Sweet And Low
Sweet and low, sweet and low,
Wind of the western sea.
Low, low, breathe and blow,
Wind of the western sea,
Over the rolling waters go.

Come from the dying moon, and blow.
Blow him again to me,
While my little one,
While my pretty one, sleeps.

Sleep and rest, sleep and rest.
Father will come to thee soon.
Rest, rest, on mother’s breast.
Father will come to thee soon.

Father will come to his babe in the nest,
Silver sails all out of the west,
Under the silver moon.
Sleep, my little one. Sleep, my pretty one.

Poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson

The Land of Counterpane
(Note: a “counterpane” is little-used word today. It means “quilt or coverlet for a bed. A bedspread.”)

When I was sick and lay in bed,
I had two pillows at my head.
And all my toys beside me lay,
To keep me happy all the day.

And sometimes for an hour or so,
I watched my leaden soldiers go,
With different uniforms and drills,
Among the bedclothes, through the hills.

And sometimes sent my ships in fleets,
All up and down among the sheets.
Or brought my trees and houses out,
And planted cities all about.

I was the giant, great and still,
That sits upon the pillow-hill.
And sees before him, valley and plain,
The pleasant land of Counterpane.

Poem by Robert Louis Stevenson

Afternoon On A Hill
I will be the gladdest thing,
Under the sun!
I will touch a hundred flowers,
And not pick one.

I will look at cliffs and clouds,
With quiet eyes.
Watch the wind bow down the grass,
And the grass rise.

And when lights begin to show,
Up from the town.
I will mark which must be mine,
And then start down.

Poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay
A Song Of The Railroad Men
The great Pacific railway,
For California, hail!
Bring on the great big engine.
Lay down the iron rail!

Across the rolling prairies,
By steam we’re bound to go.
The railroad cars are coming, humming,
Through New Mexico!

The little dogs in dog-town,
Will wag each little tail.
They’ll think that something’s coming,
A-riding on the rail.

The rattlesnake will show its fangs.
The owl, “too-whit, too-hoo!”
The railroad cars are coming, humming,
Through New Mexico!


A Pig
As I went to Bonner,
I met a pig,
Without a wig.
Upon my word and honor.


The Sleepy Song
As soon as the fire burns red and low,
And the house upstairs is still.
She sings me a strange little sleepy song,
Of sheep that go over the hill.

The good little sheep run quick and soft.
Their colors are gray and white.
They follow their leader, nose and tail,
For they must be home by night.

And one slips over. And one comes next.
And one runs after behind.
The gray one’s nose at the white one’s tail,
The top of the hill they find.

And when they get to the top of the hill,
They quietly slip away.
But one runs over. And one comes next.
Their colors are white and gray.

And one slips over. And one comes next.
The good little, gray little sheep!
I watch how the fire burns red and low.
And she says that I’ll fall asleep.

Poem by Josephine Daskam Bacon







She was already a great piano player at the young age of ten.


Gee whiz, that’s too expensive a gift that you got for me.


I like this new brand of gel that I got to shape my hair.


The gem on this ring is opal.


My dad drinks very little alcohol, but he’ll occasionally have a gin and tonic.


The new boy is named Roger, but he goes by the nickname “Rog.”


I’m going to veg out on the sofa all weekend and watch all of the “Lord of the Rings” movies.


My old friend had aged quite a bit due to the many stresses of his last fifteen years.


Make sure that our parrot doesn’t get out of his cage.


You need to back away from the edge of that dangerous cliff!


Show me the gage measurements that we’ve gotten from the radar in the last hour.


Geez, Louise, I thought that you could drive the golf ball further than that.


Which one of these hair gels will be gentler to my scalp?


A lady who’s an expert in gems talked to us at the science museum today.


Gene Hackman is one of my favorite actors of all time.


Wow, you inherited a gene for the brightest red hair that I’ve ever seen!


The well-dressed gent at the door is asking if we have a table for six people.


Do you know the gest of King Arthur pulling out a sword that was encased in a stone?


The boxer yelled a gibe at his opponent, hoping to taunt him.


In England, they now distill many different flavors of gins.


His speech was about a complicated topic, but I think that I got the gist of it.


Hundreds of years ago, a magician might also be called a “mage.”


Children, please turn to page sixty in your science textbook.


The Emperor flew into a rage when he heard that his flagship battleship had been sunk.


My grandfather gave me some sage advice today.


Queen Elizabeth announced that England would wage war on Spain.


In class, we’ve started to read “The Red Badge of Courage.”


A barge of coal lumbered slowly up the Ohio River.


Watch out, he’ll try to cadge that from you, and you’ll never get it back!


The boss is pacing back and forth in his office like a caged wild animal.


The child edged closer to his mother when he saw the barking dogs.


She gaged that the building was seven stories high.


The tire gauge says that the front right tire needs two more pounds of air.


Let’s order a large pepperoni and sausage pizza.


My Aunt Madge just published a mystery novel.


Our German shepherd has a terrible case of mange on his tummy.


Did you hear that Marge Turner just got her masters degree?


I just got paged to call the boss.


My friend Paige is going out for the cheerleading squad.


The blizzard raged on until there was a foot of snow on the ground.


The town is just on the other side of that mountain range.


Sarge says that he’ll give us a pass to go into town on Saturday night.


The countries waged war against each other for five long years.


The actress walked up to the stage to receive her Oscar award.









Lesson 15 – Stories Misc: Two Mid-1900s Short Stories

NEW WORDS:  Russ, Russ’s, adventurous, announced, aquamarine, artery, atop, automobiles, basin, blustery, bottles, brakes, bustled, buttoned, cease, clink, clinkety, clump, clumped, clumperty, clumsy, cluster, clutching, converse, countless, crammed, dapper, deposited, distinctive, dodging, embraced, endless, exploding, faucet, firecrackers, flashes, footways, gangles, gazing, gleefully, goggles, gracious, gradually, grasped, hook, indigo, legion, lumbering, lustrous, magazines, massaged, milkman’s, motor, motorcycle, motorcyclist, myriads, newspapers, numerous, paisley, pajamas, passenger, pedals, pedestrians, perch, pitz, plunked, plush, positioned, powdery, procession, pronounced, purring, races, racket, resonant, rooster, rumbling, sauntered, scour, scrambled, scuttles, securely, seemly, shuteye, smaller, snoozing, spluttered, sponged, spurt, sputter, squealed, staggering, statues, steady, storefronts, straddled, stride, swash, taxi, taxis, thorough, thuds, thumps, thwacked, toothbrush, touches, transported, tremendous, underpants, undershirt, uproar, ushered, vehicles, washbowl, washcloth, whizzes, wisps, workmen, zooming

Good Morning, Russ
Once there was a boy. His name was Russ. He was asleep in his pint-sized bed. There was a sound. What did Russ hear? “Cock-a-doodle-doo!” The rooster crowed! Russ opened his eyes.

Then he heard, “Rumble! Rumble!” That was the milkman’s truck. It came up the driveway. Then, “Clumperty, clump!” That was the milkman walking. He clumped up to the house. “Clinkety, clink!” It was a resonant song. It was the milk bottles. He deposited them at the door.

Now Russ was wide awake. He picked up his Teddy Bear. Bear slept each night in his bed.

“Hi, Teddy!” Russ pronounced. Then he hugged Bear. He embraced him securely. He massaged his face against Bear’s plush fur. He talked to Bear. They had quite a conversation.


By and by, the door flung open. Russ’s mom sauntered into the room. She said, “Well, well! Good morning! Are you awake yet? Did you get enough shuteye?” Russ sat up in bed.

“Russ get up!” he said. Mom let down the side of his bed. Russ scrambled over it. He bustled down to the floor. He was clutching Teddy under one arm. Mom took his other hand. She ushered him into the bathroom.

She took Bear. She plunked him down on the washbowl. Bear would watch Russ get dressed. Mom settled down on a stool. She removed Russ’s pajamas. She reached for the faucet. She turned on the water. It went “Swish, swish, spurt! Swish, swash! Sputter, splash!”

The water spluttered up high. It thwacked Bear on the nose. Russ chuckled. He had distinctive dimples. He squealed, “Water hit Bear’s nose!”


Mom took a washcloth. She sponged Russ’s face and hands. She reached for his toothbrush. It hung on a hook. She took it down. “Brush, scour, polish.” She gave Russ’s teeth a thorough scrub. She announced, “Bear sees Russ get all clean. Russ’s skin is sparkling!”

Mom took Russ’s underpants. She positioned them so he could step into them. Russ put in his left leg. Then he put in his right leg. She lifted up his undershirt. Russ put in one arm. Then the other arm. Mom said, “Bear sees Russ put on his underwear.”

Mom took Russ’s new suit. It was a lustrous indigo color. She held it for him. He gradually got each arm and leg into it. Mom buttoned it up. She said, “Bear sees Russ get into his dapper new suit. What pretty brass buttons!”

Mom grasped Russ’s socks. She pulled them onto his feet. She said, “Bear sees Russ’s seemly paisley socks.” So far, Mom has helped Russ. But now, he grabbed his shoes. What do you think he did? He put them on by himself! Mom didn’t have to help him. She said, “Good gracious! Well, I’ll be. Look at that! Bear sees Russ put his own shoes on! Excellent job!”

Mom took a brush and comb. “Slick, slick!” She brushed Russ’s hair down smooth. Then she took Bear from the basin. She put him in Russ’s arms. Russ held Teddy Bear gleefully. They ran off to play. They would have an adventurous day!


Big Street in the Big City
Somewhere there’s a street. It’s a long street. It’s a wide street. It runs through the middle of a huge city. There are sidewalks for pedestrians. They’re smooth, cement sidewalks. There’s one on each side of the street. Each day, countless feed stride atop the footways. Heavy feet stamp. Smaller feet tramp. Dainty feet skip and patter.

And what about the street? Myriads of wheels zip by. They pass in a long procession. They are lumbering and rumbling. Whizzing and zooming, they roll down the street. First comes a clumsy motor truck. It gangles along on its big wheels. It needs broad tires to stay steady. Inside, it’s crammed with bricks. There are wisps of straw between them. Where’s it taking them? Perhaps to workmen who are building a new house? It thumps and thuds down the street.


Then a cab with a passenger scuttles by. It is black and yellow. It flashes past the people. It is swerving and curving past the truck. It just misses the clumsy truck! Then a tremendous bus glides by. It has ample rows of seats inside. There are a legion of faces, too. They’re gazing out of the numerous windows. Some of their looks are happy. Some are sad. Some read books. Some read magazines or newspapers. Some are snoozing. Some converse with each other. The bus is its own little town. It’s enormous and smoothly purring. It’s shiny with its aquamarine and white paint.

Then there’s an uproar. “Pitz! Pitz!” What’s exploding? It’s like a moving cluster of firecrackers! All this noise from that small thing? It’s straddled by a man in goggles. Yes! It’s a tiny motorcycle. So much racket! And look at its speed. Whew! It rushes by. It’s dodging the truck. It’s darting past the bus. Look! It has caught up with the cab! It passes the whizzing taxi.

Another truck. It’s full of ashes. An immense cloth is spread over them. Two men sit on top. A blustery puff of wind blows. Powdery ashes fly out from under the cloth.


More taxis. More automobiles. More trucks! Then they all stop. A light shines red. The trucks stand still. The taxis and buses take a rest. The motorcyclist spreads his legs. He touches the pavement with his feet.

Green light! The truck driver takes off his brakes. He steps on the gas. But watch the cab. With a jerk, it is off first. Away it whizzes. Then the colorful bus. Pitz! Pitz! The motorcyclist has his feet on the pedals again. He passes the bus. He passes the cab. He’s gone!

There’s an endless movement of vehicles. They get going. Then they cease to move. They perch like statues. Then, green light! Off again! First the cabs. Then the bus. Then the motorcyclist who races ahead. Finally, the trucks. It’s like this all day long. First the red light. Then the green light. The long street is an artery for the city. People get to work. Kids get to school. Products are transported to storefronts. The wide street is designed to carry a staggering amount of traffic. The street helps the city to come alive!

Story by Lucy Sprague Mitchell

Lesson 16 – Stories Misc: Lost, Forever?

NEW WORDS: Hubble, Hubble’s, Latin, ancient, applause, assure, awesome, awestruck, awry, blond, bounty, classmates, closets, contact, cryptic, curtains, daughters, doubters, dramatic, expected, flourish, forever, forgive, frantic, genuine, gifted, glitter, gosh, graceful, hidden, laden, magician, mirrors, misapplied, naught, nether, outfit, palms, piercing, piping, presence, refused, reopened, scarves, secrets, serious, shoulders, skeptics, stage, stomped, suspect, suspicious, time’s, unbelievers, unforgivable, visiting, wrinkles, younger 

How could one NOT love a superb magic show? We got to see one last week! Thanks to our teacher, Mrs. Hubble, that is. She gave us a huge surprise. “Students! My mom and dad are visiting me. My dad’s a gifted magician. He’ll be at the school on Friday. He’ll put on a magic show. It’s JUST for our class!” We all clapped and cheered.

So, that day, he was to come at noon. We were in the gym. We were so looking forward to the show! Soon, a tall man walked to the stage. He was handsome. He had silver white hair. It fell to the top of his shoulders. It was thick, like a lion’s mane. His eyes were bright blue. He had a piercing look when he made eye contact. But he wasn’t scary. He smiled a lot. He looked like a caring soul. He was close to the age of my Gramps. I could tell by the wrinkles on his face.

“Hello, new friends,” he said. He had a deep, but soft, voice. We were caught in his spell. He had us right from the start. We were in the palms of his hands! “I’m Dr. Magic. I’ll surprise you many times today! But I must do one thing before we start. Let me have you meet my helper, Miss Ann.”


A pretty young lady came to the stage. She was graceful. She had long, blond hair. She was dressed in an outfit with red glitter. It was SO sparkling! She smiled warmly at us. Then she took a slow bow. What stage presence! (We found out more about her later. She was Mrs. Hubble’s younger sister. They looked a lot alike.)

Dr. Magic was awesome! He did great card tricks. He pulled a rabbit from a hat. He pulled an endless rope of scarves from his suit. He could tell us secrets about ourselves. He knew how to ask just the right questions. He even made a big parrot appear from out of nowhere. It flew around the gym. Then, it went back into a box on the stage. Dr. Magic closed the box. He then reopened it. The box was empty! No way! How did he do that?! It was like the bird had turned into a ghost.

The tricks just kept getting better. No one could figure out how he did it. Then he told us that his last act would be the best of all. He pulled something large onto the stage. It had been hidden. It had been back in the shadows. It was like a closet on wheels. One person could fit in it. Miss Ann got inside. The Dr. closed the door. He had a serious look. He called out strange chants. (They sounded Latin to me.) Then he gave a dramatic flourish. He opened the closet door. Miss Ann was gone! WOW! We all gasped!


Dr. Magic turned to us all. “I know what you think. You suspect that it was a trick. You don’t believe in REAL magic. Such doubters! Such unbelievers! Such skeptics!” Then he pointed at two of my classmates. He bid them to come to the stage. “Walk around. Test me. Challenge me. Go anywhere on the stage. Look for trap doors. Look for mirrors. See if Miss Ann is hanging on a rope. Bang on the closet. Go inside of it. See if she’s hiding in the shadows. I can assure you this. It will all be for naught!”

Ann and Chuck spent about five minutes poking around. The Doc said, “Time’s up. Come over to me. Did you find anything suspicious?” They both nodded their heads, “no.” And they shrugged their shoulders.  

“So, you found no monkey business? Of course, you didn’t!” he bellowed. “But now Ann will return,” said the good Doctor. “Here’s what can happen with GENUINE magic!” Another cryptic spell flowed from his lips. He opened the door. We expected him to be proud of his magic.


But, OH, MY GOSH. Ann wasn’t there! He threw his hands to his head. He circled the closet. He was frantic. He started to talk to himself, under his breath. Something was awry. What had gone wrong?

Then there was a huge scene. The Doctor cried out! “Oh no, Ann. Dear Ann! What have I done? Have I misapplied the ancient chants? Have I sent you to the nether world? Are you lost, forever? Oh, children, I fear it’s hopeless. Please, all of you. Come to the stage. Look everywhere once again. Look in supply closets. Look behind curtains. Maybe one of you will find her!”

We all rushed to the stage. Doctor Magic slumped on the edge of the stage. He started to sob, loudly. We were all in shock! We could hear him whispering to himself. “Please, forgive me, Ann. I have let you down. I have done you wrong. Such a mistake! Unforgivable!”


But forty-five seconds later, the magic happened. The Doc was also a GREAT actor. He had fooled us. From out of nowhere, in walked Miss Ann. She entered through a side door. She had a big smile on her face. AND, she was rolling in a table laden with boxes of piping hot pizza! What a bounty!

“Lunch time, kiddos!” she called out to us.

Then the Doc hugged his daughters. Ann, first. And then, Mrs. Hubble. They all three bowed. They looked like such a happy family. We cheered, stomped, and clapped. They deserved the applause!

We were awestruck by it all. What a magical day it had been! But we never did find out how they did that really cool and crazy last trick! Mrs. Hubble refused to tell us! But she did treat us to some cool magic tricks of her own!









My great-grandmother had good genes, and she lived to be 104 years old!


One of the handsome gents over there appears to be quite shy.


Beau Geste is a classic movie from 1939, about men who join to fight in the Foreign Legion.


Let me tell you the geste about Saint George slaying the dragon.


I love reading the gests of the Brothers Grimm.


Son, you did a very neat job of trimming the hedge.


Let’s carefully climb down to that ledge to get a better view.


The knight said, “I must venge the death of my brother in our next battle with the enemy.”


I’d like another lemon wedge for my iced tea.


The king led a siege on the enemy castle.


Gene’s gone to Home Depot to buy some new tools.


I’ve been on a barbecue binge, and I’ve tried ten different barbecue restaurants over the last three months.


The captain of the ship yelled, “Water has leaked into the bilge!”


A point was reached in the negotiation where neither side would budge any further.


When you get a blister, your skin will bulge out.


I’m in the mood for a delectable hot fudge sundae!


The judge sentenced the defendant to one year in prison.


The ski lodge was packed with vacationers.


The basketball player made a lunge for the ball, but it went out of bounds.


There’s a tinge of hot spice in this soup.


The basement in this old house is in a state of dinge.


The politician gibed at his opponent in their televised debate.


The boy yelled to the bully, “Your gibes do not bother me!”


She uses such big words that I never get the gists of her speeches.


This door hinge has gotten quite squeaky.


The pageboy called to his Lord, “My liege, shall I bring you your suit of armor?”


Arrgh, a midge just flew up my nose.


Let’s stop for a break when we get top that mountain ridge.


Don’t lean too close to the campfire or you’ll singe your hair.


The runner was able to dodge two tacklers and ran for a touchdown.


Check out that funny-looking wodge of petrified rock.


Give your dad a gentle nudge to wake him from his nap.







Lesson 17 – Space Hawk: Fun On Space Hawk

NEW WORDS: badminton, basketball, chess, circling, cricket, directions, diving, dodge, five’s, football, goal, gooey, gravity, groovy, gymnastics, hurrah, lengths, limits, maze, newer, paintball, pickleball, ping, player’s, polo, pong, rugby, slimy, softball, target, teams, territory, tetherball, tunnels, video, volleyball, wacky, wrestling, zillions

Hurrah! Fun times! Party time! Let’s play! READY! SET! GO!

We’re never bored! But there’s more. We stay in tip-top shape! Most of us could do an “Iron Man!”

Deck Five is “PLAY LAND.” It’s HUGE. And tall! We can even play golf. Only once has a golf ball hit the ceiling! 

PLAY LAND has it all. Older sports first. Tennis, basketball, football. A nine-hole golf course. Soccer, rugby, cricket. Volleyball. Track and Field. Baseball and softball. Pingpong. Swimming and diving. Ice skating and hockey. Wrestling. Gymnastics. Water polo. Pickleball. Tetherball. Badminton. Paintball. You name it. We have it!

Then, newer sports from the last hundred years. “Target Golf.” Shoot the other player’s golf ball out of the air. Groovy! Wicked! Brilliant!

Dodge Bubble.” You have to keep HOLLY’s “hologram bubbles” from circling you. Tough job!


Then, there’s “Splat The Monster!” The BEST! Tunnels keep changing direction. You have to get to the end. Quite a maze! AND monsters come out. They chase you! You zap them with “SLIMY-GOOP!” Gooey fun! A total hoot!

But here’s the best. “Air Ball.” We turn Deck Five’s gravity off. We float! Poles come down from the top. Different lengths. And they keep changing. You need the poles to push off of and move through the air.

There are three teams. Eight per team. There are twenty balls. Lots of sizes and colors. They’re shot into Deck Five. They aren’t moving at the same speeds! Some zip by. Some just float. A few are slow. AND, all go in different directions! Your brain goes nuts! It’s wacky! Good luck keeping up with it!

The teams try for the most points. Each ball is worth different points. You have to make a plan. You have to think. It’s rough! Lots of body blocks. Lots of throwing balls back and forth. AND, two teams can join to work against the third team! Sweet!!


Air Ball is the best! That’s my thought. But there’s also “No-gravity Basketball.” Almost as fun!

And there are more than just sports. Each game you can think of is on board. But the video games have limits. No more than an hour a day. SORRY! Too big a “time-suck!”

I like four-person chess the best. It’s hard. It hurts your brain! But it keeps you on your toes.

Want to have a real blast? Let Aliens try out PLAY LAND! They love it! We learn about their sports and games, too.

One of their games blows me away. “Light Wars.” Zillions of lights float above a field. There are a hundred colors. At least! The Aliens move the lights with their minds. The goal is to build territory. You can have as few as two players. Or up to ten. Watching them play is mind-blowing. One round could last for days! It’s a shame for us. Our brains just aren’t ready. We can’t play that game, yet! Maybe soon! We love to keep learning! And to keep getting better!

So! On SPACE HAWK, we work hard. But we play hard, too!! We’re always on our toes! And we’re in GREAT shape! Three cheers for PLAY LAND!


Lesson 18 – Poems And Rhymes

NEW WORDS: Annie, Barnum’s, Georgie, Keziah, Kilkenny, Mary’s, Porgie, Robert, Tommy’s, Yankee, beams, bearing, beetles, belief, billows, boughs, cabbage, consulted, donkeys, frosty, gaze, giggles, growls, jiggety, jumbo, kitty’s, lesson, mended, molasses, nails, nay, night’s, nursery, opinion, orchard, pails, petticoat, petticoat’s, rarely, scolding, snorter, sofa, swallows, sweetness, trailing, unfortunately, vanished, vulture, washers, weeping, wiggles

Georgie Porgie
Georgie Porgie, pudding and pie,
Kissed the girls, and made them cry.
When the boys, came out to play,
Georgie Porgie ran away.


Kitty-Cat Mew
Kitty-Cat Mew, jumped over a coal,

And in her best petticoat, burnt a great hole.

Poor Kitty’s weeping, she’ll have no more milk,

Until her best petticoat’s mended with silk.


Only My Opinion
Is a caterpillar ticklish?
Well, it’s always my belief,
That he giggles, as he wiggles,
Across a hairy leaf.

Poem by Monica Shannon

Chimney Sweep
Chimney sweep, you’re sooty, your clothes are black tonight.

All the washers in London, can never wash them white!


What Does the Bee Do?
What does the bee do?
Bring home honey.
And what does Father do?
Bring home money.

And what does Mother do?
Lay out the money.
And what does baby do?
Eat up the honey.

Poem by Christina Rossetti

Mr. Toad
Mr. Toad set out on a journey, his donkeys each bearing a pack.

Said Mrs. Toad, “My darling, when are you coming back?”


The Little Girl With A Curl
There was a little girl, who had a little curl,
Right in the middle of her forehead.
When she was good, she was very, very good.
And when she was bad, she was horrid.


Sleep, sleep, sleep!
Little beetles in the grass,
On their mothers’ backs are sleeping.
So on my back, baby mine,
Sleep, sleep, sleep!


Sing, Sing
Sing, sing, what shall I sing?
Cat’s run away with the pudding-string!
Do, do, what shall I do?
The cat has bitten it quite in two!


The Cabbage Field
Annie goes to the cabbage field,
She picks green leaves in the cabbage field, to feed her rabbits fine.
Johnny sees her, “Ha, ha, ha!”
Says, “I’ll catch you, tra, la, la!”
Nay,” says she. “Now go away!
I’ll not dance with you today!”


Jack Frost
Someone painted pictures on my
Window pane last night,
Willow trees with trailing boughs,
And flowers, frosty white.

And lovely crystal butterflies,
But when the morning sun,
Touched them with its golden beams,
They vanished one by one!

Poem by Helen Bayley Davis

Friday night’s dream, on Saturday told,
Is sure to come true, be it never so old.


The Vulture
The Vulture eats between his meals,
And that’s the reason why,
He very, very rarely feels,
As well as you and I.

His eye is dull, his head is bald,
His neck is growing thinner.
Oh! what a lesson for us all,
To only eat at dinner!

Poem by Hilaire Belloc

A Cat Meeting
All the cats consulted, what was it about?
How to catch a little mouse, running in and out!


Winter Sweetness
This little house is sugar.
Its roof with snow is piled.
And from its tiny window,
Peeps a maple-sugar child.

Poem by Langston Hughes

Up in the green orchard,
There is a green tree,
The finest of fruits,
That ever you’ll see.

The apples are ripe, 
And ready to fall,
And Robert and Roger,
Will gather them all.


For Baby
You shall have an apple, you shall have a plum,
You shall have a rattle, when papa comes home.


Dinosaurs lived so long ago,
They never had a chance to know,
How many kids would love to get,
A dinosaur to be their pet.

Poem by Bobbi Katz

To Market
To market, to market, to buy a fat pig.
Home again, home again, jiggety jig.
To market, to market, to buy a fat hog,
Home again, home again, jiggety jog.
To market, to market, to buy a plum bun,
Home again, home again, market is done.


Jumbo was an elephant,
As large as all creation,
He sailed across the ocean,
To join the Yankee nation.

He jars the ground as he turns around,
Jumbo, elephant Jumbo.
Biggest animal in this world,
Barnum’s elephant Jumbo!

He swallows peanuts by the ton.
I tell you, he’s a snorter!
Molasses, cake, and gingerbread,
And loves his soda water!

He lifts his trunk and growls a growl,
It’s like a clap of thunder.
When it comes, the people stare,
And gaze around in wonder!


Fears And Tears
Tommy’s tears, and Mary’s fears,
Will make them old, before their years.


I have a secret place to go.
Not anyone may know.
And sometimes when the wind is rough.
I cannot get there fast enough.

And sometimes when my mother,
Is scolding my big brother,
My secret place, it seems to me,
Is quite the only place to be.

Poem by Gwendolyn Brooks

The Kilkenny Cats
There were once two cats of Kilkenny.

Each thought there was one cat too many.

So they fought and they fit, and they scratched and they bit,

Till, excepting their nails, and the tips of their tails,

Instead of two cats, there weren’t any.


A Good Play
We built a ship upon the stairs, all made of the back-bedroom chairs,

And filled it full of sofa pillows, to go a-sailing on the billows.

We took a saw and several nails, and water in the nursery pails.

And Tom said, “Let us also take, an apple and a slice of cake,”

Which was enough for Tom and me, to go a-sailing on, till tea.

We sailed along for days and days, and had the very best of plays.

But Tom fell out and hurt his knee, so there was no one left but me.

Poem by Robert Louis Stevenson

Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 19 – Part One

NEW WORDS: adapted, affects, blazing, cactus, classroom, creates, dandelion, differences, earlier, environment, environments, hazel, indoors, introduction, largest, lawns, nutrients, photosynthesis, plant’s, prettier, reaches, recap, reminder, shady, smallest, soaks, sprout, stems, sunflower, survive, thrive, tree’s, trunk’s, underwater, veins, vitamins, wither

Chapter One: Introduction to Plants
Many kinds of things live in our world. We have people, animals, and plants. You’ll know lots of the living things in this picture. People, animals, and plants have things in common. They’re all alive. They need food, water, and air. These help them to grow. These help them to stay alive. But there are differences, too. Animals and people make sounds. Plants don’t. And plants can’t move places.

How can plants live and grow? They need four things. Food, water, air, and light. A plant can survive with these four things. Even in a crack in the sidewalk!

What happened a few weeks ago? A dandelion seed floated through the air. It landed in this crack. There was a little soil in it. Enough for it to begin to grow. This dandelion gets plenty of sun. It gets plenty of air, water, and nutrients.

Let’s look at this shady forest. It is home to lots of types of plants. You’ll find the tallest tree. You’ll see the smallest flower. A forest is a large land area. Here, lots of trees grow close together. Lots of animals live in such a forest. They depend on these plants for food. Some plants become their homes. This forest is just one kind of environment. There are lots of kinds of places like this. Living things thrive on Earth because of them.


This is another type of forest. The leaves here aren’t like the ones in the forest you just looked at. Their colors aren’t the same. Their shapes aren’t the same. Later, you’ll learn about two types of trees. 

This place isn’t like forests. All plants need food, water, air, and light. But, different places have varied amounts of these things. This is a desert. Here, it’s hot and dry all year. There are plants here like this cactus. They’ve adapted to a life in sandy soil. They survive with very little rainfall. They’re fine with a blazing sun. How would the tough dandelion and the trees you saw earlier do here? They’d wither. They’d die. And a cactus couldn’t live in the sidewalk crack or the forest! Different types of plants grow in different environments.

Here’s an underwater home. Of course, fish live here. But there are plants down there, too. Underwater plants need the same things other plants need. You got it! Food, water, air, and light.

This home is neither forest, desert, or underwater. It’s a city park. People gathered seeds and planted them. People plant grass seeds on lawns and in parks. This creates places to play and relax. We plant flowers and trees to make the world prettier.

Some plants grow indoors. You might have one in your classroom. If so, someone needs to water it. That keeps it healthy and green.

Let’s recap. Plants have four needs. Food, water, air, and light. But not all plants can grow in all the same places on Earth. A dandelion can’t grow in the desert. A corn plant can’t grow underwater. You’ll now learn about different types of plants. And you’ll learn why plants are so important. They’re needed for both animals and people.


Chapter Two: Plant Parts
There are all kinds of plants. All plants need food, water, air, and light. Most plants have basic parts that are alike. They’re roots, stems, leaves, flowers, and seeds.

Take this sunflower. See the parts at the bottom. They’re roots. They’re are covered with soil. We usually can’t see the roots as we walk by. We’d have to take the plants out of the ground.

The plant’s roots reach down. They go deep into the soil. They grow underground. They help to hold the plant in place. But what’s most important? The roots take up water and food that are in the soil. Nutrients help plants grow. They keep them healthy. That’s just like vitamins. They help YOU grow. They keep you healthy.

The water and food move through the roots. They go up into the plant’s stem. The stem holds the plant up tall. The plant reaches toward the light. The water and food move elsewhere, too. They’re able to reach other parts of the plant. They even get to the leaves. The leaves are attached to the stem. They grow out from the stem. The leaves are usually green. But they can be other colors.


Lots of plants have flowers. They’re called blossoms. See the blossoms on this sunflower. Check out the outside. It has bright yellow petals. The flower petals of different plants come in lots of colors!

See the center of the sunflower blossom. This part has lots of petals around it. It’s made up of small seeds. How big is a sunflower seed? It’s about the size of a fingernail! Put the seeds of the sunflower plant into the soil. They’ll make a new sunflower plant! People eat certain plant seeds. You may have tasted a sunflower seed.

So, plants’ basic parts are roots, a stem, leaves, flowers, and seeds. They look different on different plant types. These flowers are from lots of plant types. Did you see this? The flowers’ colors are different. But their flower petals have different shapes, too.

This apple tree has the same basic parts. There aren’t any apples yet. That’s because this picture was from spring. At this time of year, the blossoms come out. The apples will grow in summer. We can pick them in the fall. We can’t see the apple tree’s roots. They grow underground. But we can see other parts. We can see lots of stems on the tree. The small stems are branches. See the apple blossoms and the leaves? There are lots of leaves on the branches of this apple tree.


The largest part of the tree is the trunk. The trunk’s outside is covered with bark. Bark is like clothes for trees. It protects the tree’s insides.

Here are leaves from varied trees. Take a close look. You’ll see that the leaves have lots of shapes. How can you tell what kind of tree you’re looking at?  Look closely at its leaves. The leaf on the top left is from a sugar maple. Below that is a white oak. The top right is from a witch hazel. Below that is a black oak. Remember this. Lots of plants have leaves. Not just trees. Leaves are important for all plants to survive.

Let’s learn about when light shines on the green leaves of a plant. The leaf soaks up energy from the light. This is an amazing process. It’s called “photosynthesis.” The leaf uses the light. The light affects the water and air that’s in the plant. It turns it into food for the rest of the plant!


Here’s a reminder. Earlier, we talked of the roots and stem of a plant. They move water and food from the soil. They bring it to the other parts of a plant. They bring it to the leaves. Photosynthesis is amazing. Water, nutrients, air, and light come together in the plant’s leaves. This is how plants make their own food. It’s a good thing, too. Plants can’t move like animals or people. They aren’t able to go find food somewhere else. Plants have to make food for themselves. So, the water and nutrients are made into food. This is through photosynthesis. There are parts of the leaves called “veins.” They carry the food back to the stem. From there, food gets to the rest of the plant.

Now you’ve learned about the basic parts of plants. Plants start as seeds. They sprout. They grow roots, stems, leaves. At last, they grow flowers. Roots, stems, and leaves work together with water, nutrients, air, and light. They make food for the plant. It’s called photosynthesis. Say that word three times!









Er, would it be impolite of me to ask for another piece of pie?


I just learned about a “sea eagle” that’s called an “ern.” (Also spelled “erne.”)


I saw her at the party with a pretty new dress.


You can have three pieces of candy per person.


The fishing trawler spotted a large berg in the distance.


My two favorite Muppets characters are Bert and Ernie.


Water this potted fern about every four days.


I cleaned the counters so well that you could barely find a single germ on them.


My Uncle Herb grew a handlebar mustache.


What’s the primary herb that you used to season the soup?


Check that out, it’s a farm with a herd of buffalo!


I think that this purple jacket is hers.


That rude jerk at the checkout counter ought to be fired.


Mrs. Kern says that we’re going to dissect a frog in biology class tomorrow!


That new kid is a nerd all right, but man is he super smart!


Our dog loves to bat around this Nerf ball.


In Dad’s new job, he gets the perk of having a company-owned car.


Kids, I’m going to the beauty salon to get a perm.


The detective said, “Folks, I think we’ve caught the perp who broke into Mr. Daniels’ house.


Sally seems to never have an “off” day, and she’s always pert and sprightly.


In history, we studied the life of a serf who lived under a feudal lord in the Middle Ages.


The President was reelected to a second term of office.


I fed a tern some bread crumbs down at the harbor today.


The word “cat” is not a verb; it’s a noun.


We’re excited that Uncle Vern is going to take us to a rodeo.


The prosecutor asked, “Mrs. Jones, where were you on the night that your husband disappeared?”


“Wert” is an archaic form of “were,” as in “Thou wert born to lead a nation.”


The fishermen were frustrated that lots of bergs had floated into their favorite fishing area.


There was a famous comedian in the 20th century named Milton Berle.


Max Ernst was a modern artist who created bizarre “surreal” paintings.


It was so humid in the rainforest that fog was floating among the ferns.


Wash your hands well to kill all of those germs that are on your fingers!


I hear that Herb’s reading a book about computer programming.


I have laced the salad with three different herbs from our garden.


We saw many herds of cattle on our drive through Texas.


That golfer jerks on his downswing, and that’s why he can’t hit the golf ball very well.


Mrs. Kern’s daughter is a doctor, and she’s going to talk to our class next week.


Merge carefully when you’re on the on-ramp to the interstate.


Aunt Merle is bringing her famous carrot cake for us to have for dessert tonight.


The nerds in our class tend to sit at that table during library time.


You had a lot of nerve suggesting to the boss that he was wrong about that!


One of the perks of my job is that I get to keep frequent flyer airline points for personal use.


Lydia said to Natasha, “I’ve already done four perms so far today.”


This morning, the judge sentenced three robbery perps to jail time.


Serfs during the Middle Ages led a brutally difficult life.


Mom chose a serge fabric for the dressmaker to use in making mom a new dress.


That pro’s tennis serve has been somewhat off for him lately.


Which of these four terms describes a word that’s spelled the same backwards as it is forwards?


Terns started to fly above me when I pulled out my sandwich, because they thought that I’d feed them.


The store clerk started to get terse with me after I tried on my sixth pair of shoes.


To “run” and to “jump” are both examples of verbs.


I think that the scientists are on the verge of a medical breakthrough here.


Vern’s fishing pole snapped in half, and he let out a loud curse.


Let’s just sing the third verse of this hymn.


The saxophonist played his solo with lots of verve.


The clerk was very helpful and took me right to the section of the store where I found what I needed.


I love how, in the Hagar the Horrible comic strip, the dog Snert wears a Viking helmet!


We learned that the sperm whale is the largest of the “toothed” whales on Earth.


The coach had a stern look on his face after Todd fumbled the football.


That twerp had the gall to try to borrow money from me!








Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 20 – Part Two

NEW WORDS: absorb, becomes, beginnings, cycle, decay, decayed, decays, depends, dies, fewer, forgets, fully, germinate, germinated, germinates, germination, image, lifetime, mature, newly, sapling, seedling, seedlings, softer, sprouts, stages, sunflower’s, watermelon, woody

Chapter Three: The Life Cycle of a Plant
You’ve learned the parts of a plant. One of those is the seed. Lots of plants begin with a seed. Seeds come in all shapes and sizes. And seeds from varied plants look different. Each seed is a plant waiting to sprout. You have to plant it in the right place. Then it will grow to be a new plant. What grows from a sunflower seed? Only a sunflower plant. An apple seed? Only an apple tree. A watermelon seed? A pumpkin seed?

Seeds are the beginnings of new plants. Plants live like all living things. They live in a “life cycle.” A life cycle is the stages and changes that happen in living things.

A plant’s life starts with a seed. Most seeds have nutrients in them. These feed the new plants for a short time. Plants then “germinate.” They begin to grow into new plants. Here’s what the seeds must have. Water. Light from the sun. Nutrients from the soil.

Let’s look at the early-growth stage. The plant looks different from a fully grown, mature plant. Baby plants are “seedlings.” This image shows a plant’s growth from germination to seedling.


See the first picture. It’s a newly germinated seed. It’s just starting to sprout. Germination needs certain things to occur. The seed must get the right amounts of sun, water, and nutrients. Then the seed will open. The seedling will poke up through the soil. Look closely. You’ll see the plant start to grow its first root. The next pictures show the same plant. This covers several days. Watch the plant grow. You’ll see thin roots. They branch off deeper into the soil. They absorb water. They take in food. They push them up through the plant’s stem. The stem grows above-ground.

It takes time for a seedling to grow into a full-grown plant. How much time depends on the type of plant. What about a sunflower seed? It takes a month. Then the seedling looks more like a full-grown sunflower plant. An apple seed? It takes years to grow into a full-grown tree!

What happens when the plant dies? It decays. It breaks down into small pieces. It goes back into the ground. It turns into nutrients in the soil. A new life cycle of a plant starts!

Let’s learn the life cycle of this oak tree. This acorn contains the oak tree’s. You’ve likely seen acorns. They’re lying outside next to full-grown trees. Or they’re being carried away by squirrels.


Squirrels spend all day running around. They look for food. They hide food. They bury huge numbers of acorns. They often forget where they put some of them! The acorn that the squirrel forgets stays in the soil. The oak seed inside now has a better chance to germinate underground. Then the seed sprouts. It will grow into a seedling. But the young tree will grow only a foot or two in its first year.

A few years will pass. The oak grows ten feet tall. Maybe more! But it’s still a young tree. It’s called a “sapling” at this point. It’s a sapling for a number of years. 

Oak trees take a long time to mature. It takes about fifty years! And it does not produce acorns till then. How many acorns can an oak make in its lifetime? Tens of thousands! Only a few of those acorns will germinate. So, not a lot of them will grow to be new oak trees.

How long can oak trees live? For some, over two hundred years! But they’re like all living things. One day, the oak tree will die. It will die slowly. This will be over the course of a number of years. It will make fewer leaves each year. Its branches will drop off one by one. Its wood will become softer.


At the end, the roots die. Then, the tree will fall down. It will make a big crash on the forest floor. The branches will be the first thing to rot. They’ll disappear into the soil. What about the woody trunk? It takes many years to decay.

All the nutrients in the wood decay. They’ll be part of the soil again. What if there are lots of decayed plants? That area of soil will then have more nutrients. The more nutrients, the better. Then it’s easier for new seeds to germinate and grow.

Let’s recap. Plants live in a life cycle. This picture shows you a sunflower’s life cycle. The sunflower seed germinates. Then a new plant begins. It sprouts. It becomes a seedling. It needs the right amount of water, nutrients, and light. Then, the plant will keep growing. After a time, the plant becomes mature. It makes more seeds. New plants grow from them. The sunflower will die. It will decay. It will become nutrients in the soil. This helps other seeds to germinate. So, other seeds can grow to be new plants. So, a new plant life cycle begins.


Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 21 – Part Three

NEW WORDS: budge, granddaughter, meowed, peeled, sliced, surprised, turnip, watered

Chapter Four: The Gigantic Turnip
It was once upon a time. There was an old man. He’d plant vegetable seeds. He did this each year. He grew vegetables. They were for himself and his wife.

It was a spring day. He planted turnip seeds. This was in a large field. It was over the hill near his house. The sun shone on them. The rain watered them. He soon thought they should be ready to eat. So, he went to have a look. He came up over the hill. He was surprised! He saw a strange bush. It was growing in the middle of the field. He drew nearer. He saw that it was not a bush. It was the top of something. It was a huge turnip!

“I’ve not seen a turnip this big!” he said to himself. “I must show it to my wife.” So, he took hold of the turnip top. He made a great grunt. He pulled and pulled. The turnip would not budge. The old man shouted to his wife. “Come and help me!”

“All right,” said the old woman. “I’ll come.” She took hold of the old man. The man held the turnip. Both of them pulled. They pulled hard! But they couldn’t pull the turnip out of the ground. The old woman called to her granddaughter.


“All right,” said the granddaughter. “I’ll come.” She got there. She took hold of the old woman. The old woman held the old man. The old man held the turnip. They all pulled. They pulled as hard as they could. But they couldn’t pull that crazy turnip out. So the granddaughter called out. She called to the grandson.

“All right,” said the grandson. “I’ll come.” He held the granddaughter. She held the old woman. She held the old man. He held the turnip. They pulled. They pulled some more. No luck. They couldn’t pull that turnip out. So, the grandson called the dog.

The dog barked four times. If it could speak, it would have said this. “All right. I’ll come.” The dog held the grandson. The grandson held the granddaughter. She held the old woman. She held the old man. He held the turnip. They all took a huge, deep breath. Then they pulled. They yelled as they pulled. It was like a tug of war! But they couldn’t pull the turnip out. So, the dog called to the cat.


The cat meowed loudly. If it could speak, it would have said this. “All right. I’ll come.” The cat held the dog. The dog held the grandson. He held the granddaughter. She held the old woman. She held the old man. He held the turnip. The man yelled out, “Ready! Set! Go! Pull! Pull! Pull!” And that they did! But no luck. They couldn’t pull the turnip out. So, the cat called to the mouse.

The mouse squeaked. If it could speak, it would have said this. “All right. I’ll come.” The mouse held the cat. The cat held the dog. The dog held the grandson. He held the granddaughter. She held the old woman. She held the old man. He held the turnip. The man yelled out, “Let’s do this! We’re a team!” They used every muscle they had.

Well, what do you know? Finally! The turnip popped out! It sent everybody tumbling along the ground.

That evening, the old woman peeled the turnip. She sliced it up. She cooked a tasty turnip stew.

Everyone was invited to dinner. The grandson. The granddaughter. The dog. The cat. The mouse. They all loved the stew. She gave the mouse an extra helping. That’s because he had shown them something. That’s that sometimes a little bit of help can make a big difference.

Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 22 – Part Four

NEW WORDS: Polly, array, beehive, brightly, comfy, crawling, cubbies, frankly, helpful, honeybee’s, honeycomb, hummingbirds, moths, nectar, outing, pollen, pollinate, pollinates, pollination, pollinator, pollinators, pouch, reproduce, tastiest, tour, wasps

Chapter Five: Polly the Honeybee’s Flower Tour
Hi! I’m Polly. I’m a honeybee. I live in a beehive. It’s in a meadow. It’s not too far from here. Your teacher asked me to come here. I’ll tell you more about flowers. That’s my favorite part of plants. You’ve learned a lot. You know these things. Flowers contain seeds. Seeds can grow into new plants.

I’m glad to come here. I’ll like telling you about flowers. That’s because flowers are one of my favorite things. Do you know the meadow near my beehive? It’s full of lots of kinds of flowers. They come in a broad array of colors.

This morning, I visited a yellow flower. Come with me. I’ll show it to you. Here it is. See its ring of bright yellow parts? Those are called “petals.” They look like brightly colored leaves. I go buzzing around each day. They’re the parts of the flower that grab my attention the most. I see a pretty flower. I then like to crawl inside the petals. I go right to the center of the flower.


What’s it like to crawl inside a flower? Think of this. You’re crawling under some bright yellow blankets. You’re in a comfy bed. Yellow is all around you. Now stay under the blankets. You’re drinking the world’s tastiest drink. You drink through a straw. You’re so happy! You wriggle around. You get covered with a yellow powder. It smells great. It feels good against your skin. That’s what it’s like for me when I go to a flower.

This is what I think. The world’s tastiest drink is called “nectar.” It’s a sweet juice that plants make. And there’s the yellow powder. I like to rub up against it. It’s called “pollen.” I find nectar and pollen in flowers. Frankly, I’m not sure which I like better!

I go to more than fifty flowers in one outing. Some days I go to a hundred. Why do I go to them? It’s because we bees get our food from flowers. My job is to fly around and find nectar and pollen. I gather some up. I take it back to my hive. I have a special pouch inside my body. It holds nectar. And there are special hairs on my back legs. They form a little basket. I brush pollen into them. Can you guess how much I take to the hive? Sometimes, my load of pollen and nectar weighs half as much as I do!


I get back to the hive. I give the nectar and pollen to the worker bees. They mix the pollen with a little bit of nectar. They feed it to baby bees. Then they fan the rest of the nectar with their wings. Most of the water dries up. What is nectar with most of the water gone? It turns into something that both bees and people love. It turns into honey! Here’s the honey in my hive. People use honey to make their food sweet. But we bees use honey for food. We keep it in a bunch of little cubbies. We call them the “honeycomb.”

I go to flowers for food. That’s reason enough for me. But I’m also doing something helpful. This goes beyond finding food for us bees. I’m helping the plants reproduce. I help them make more plants! What I do helps a plant make a seed. You can’t have a new plant without a seed. How does it work? Most plants need to take pollen from their own flowers. Then they must mix that with pollen from other plants that are like them. See here. A corn plant needs pollen from another corn plant. Then it can make seeds. Pollen from one corn plant lands on another. It’s called “pollination.” This process is really important. Without this, the plant can’t make any seeds. What if there aren’t new seeds? You got it! There won’t be new plants.

You know this. Plants can’t walk like humans. They can’t go from place to place. They don’t have wings to flap. So, they can’t fly like us bees. So, how do plants get pollen from other plants? Well, the pollen grains are quite small. They can be blown from one plant to another by the wind. So, the wind helps pollinate plants.


But bees also help pollinate plants! That’s what my trips from one plant to another do. I go to a flower. I roll inside it. I pick up lots of pollen. I fly to the next flower. I’ve carried some pollen from other flowers with me. Some of it rubs off on the next flower I go to. That’s why I’m a great plant pollinator. That’s how I got my name. I’m “Polly the Pollinator!”

I don’t like to brag. But we bees are the best pollinators in the world! Oh, sure, the wind helps it to happen. And some other insects also move grains of pollen. So, they take some from one plant to another as they feed. Butterflies do it. So do moths, beetles, and wasps. Some birds, like hummingbirds, are good pollinators. Bats are good at it, too! But no creature pollinates as much as bees do.








I grew up living in an urb of New York City.


My grandpa was cremated and his ashes were in that urn.


That cur would disappear from the scene if there was any work to be done.


Gross me out; there’s cat fur in my cereal!


I urge you to reconsider your opinion about this.


This museum has some urns from Ancient Rome.


This story is about a boy in the 1500s who lived in a burg surrounded by castle walls.


Burl Ives voiced the snowman in the children’s Christmas TV show about Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer.


The huge burl on the trunk of that tree makes it look like the tree has a wart!


In our town, you’re not allowed to burn leaves, and you must bag them.


I can’t believe this, but I just heard my dog burp.


In 1804, there was a famous duel between Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton.


Somehow we’ve got to sand down the burr on the edge of this metal.


A bunch of burs are sticking to my pants from our walk in the woods.


Burt Reynolds was a popular actor in the late 1900s, getting his start on the TV show “Gunsmoke.”


Whoa, did you see that car drive up over the curb?


I love to spread lemon curd onto a slice of pound cake.


She likes to curl weights as part of her exercise routine.


There’s a word that rhymes with “purr” that describes a similar sound; the word is “curr.”


Those curs at that sham company bilked my Gran out of a thousand dollars!


I went with my friends Curt and Zack to the swimming hole.


I’m not sure that I like the new boss, as he seems to be very curt with people.


That durn cat keeps getting under my feet and tripping me up.


Watch closely and I’ll show you the proper way to furl the American flag.


These furs look real, but they are not made from live animals.


Show me how far you can hurl a softball.


It didn’t hurt much when the nurse gave me my shot.


Turkey had to fend off another Kurd attack today.


Kurt Vonnegut was perhaps best known for his novel “Slaughterhouse-Five,” about the Vietnam war.


I wonder what evil thoughts lurk in the brain of that criminal mastermind.


As he walked through the murk of the swamp, he hoped that he wouldn’t become dinner for a gator.


My cat will purr after I stroke his fur just one time.


She exclaimed, “I can hardly wait to go surf those giant waves!”


Please go take a shower, because you smell like a turd.


Turf was flying every which way, as the football players’ cleats slammed into the grassy field.


For centuries, the Turk army of the Ottoman Empire was highly trained.


When you turn into our cul-de-sac, our house is the third one on the right.


The Mongolian nomad folded up his yurt, ready to travel yet again.


We were flying so high that the cars on the ground were just a blur.


After Gran had her stroke, it was some time before she could speak again without a little slur in her voice.


The coach gave a rousing speech to spur her team on to play hard in the game.


We urged Dad to get the family a membership at the YMCA.


We live ten miles from downtown, out in the surrounding burbs.


Aaron Burr’s aim was accurate, and his bullet mortally wounded Alexander Hamilton.








Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)



Lesson 23 – Part Five

NEW WORDS: Polly’s, center’s, concludes, core, fruit’s, honeybees, labor, munching, peel, pollinated, pollinating, produced, results, rind, scrumptious, seed’s, supposed, teeny

Chapter Six: The Fruits of Polly’s Labor
Buzz! Buzz! Hi, again. It’s Polly the Bee. Last time, I told you that I go to flowers. I collect nectar and pollen for food. I help to pollinate flowers. I carry pollen from flower to flower. I work hard. Today, I want to show you some of those results. Here’s what happens after I pollinate a flower. The plant starts to make seeds. Some plants also produce a special part. That part holds the seeds. And you know what that is! It’s called the “fruit.” Come along! I’ll show you some fruits that I helped create.

Here’s an apple tree. This tree put out blossoms. That was earlier this year. “Blossoms” means “flowers.” Apple blossoms are full of tasty nectar. I love to buzz around them. I roll around in them. The nectar is scrumptious!

But, look! It was good for the tree, too. Remember this? Bees go to plants’ flowers. They carry pollen from flower to flower. This apple tree is now full of apples. That’s because we honeybees pollinated the blossoms. We did a great job. The apples are fruits. Inside each apple are seeds. Those seeds grow into new apple trees.


The apples took weeks to grow. They were small at first. But then they got bigger. Now they’re almost ripe.  What happens when they’re ripe? They’ll drop off the tree. Then, the seeds can fall to the ground. They can grow into a new apple tree. Or, a person may pick the apple and eat it.

Here’s an image of an apple. It’s been picked off the tree. It’s been sliced open. You can see the seeds. The seeds are the brown things in the center. That center’s called the “core.” Some folks cut the seeds out of the core before they eat it. They might also cut off the peel.

Here’s another tree I pollinated. It’s a cherry tree. This tree produced lovely pink blossoms. That was early spring. There’s nothing more pretty than a cherry tree in full bloom. We bees went to this tree when the blossoms were out. Look what’s happened! The flowers are all gone now. But that’s fine. They did what they were supposed to do. Now the tree has begun to make seeds and fruit.


Have you bitten into a fresh cherry? Your teeth likely bumped into a cherry seed. That’s a big hard thing. That seed is called a cherry “pit.” The cherry seed is really inside the cherry pit. There’s soft fruit around the pit. That’s the tasty part of the cherry. To people, the fruit’s the most important part. But not to the plant. The seed’s the most important part. It can grow to be a new tree.

Let’s check out this kind of plant. It’s a strawberry plant. It put out flowers a while back. My bee pals and I went to those flowers, too. You’ll see that the plant makes seeds and fruit. We pollinated it! These fruits are strawberries. You saw this. Apple and cherry seeds were inside their fruit. Not so with strawberries. It’s the other way around. Look at this ripe strawberry. The seeds are all over its outside. These seeds are teeny. One can eat them along with the fruit.


Here’s one last plant. It’s a watermelon plant. It bloomed a few weeks back. I went to its flowers. The nectar was yummy. I brought some back to my hive. The worker bees made it into honey. But, look! This plant has been busy making something! It’s a big green thing. It’s the fruit of the watermelon plant. So, we call it a watermelon.

There’s a green part on its outside. It’s called the “rind.” The seeds are on the inside of the rind. And there’s red, juicy fruit in there, too. Many folks love watermelon. Here’s a watermelon that’s been sliced open. See the black and white seeds inside? What do folks do while eating watermelon? I mean the red squishy part. We spit out the seeds!

Well, that concludes my tour. I did a lot of pollinating work this year. I’m proud of myself for that. I hope you learned a lot. I hope you’ll think of me again. Especially as you’re munching on the fruits of my labor!

Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)



Lesson 24 – Part Six

NEW WORDS: Appleseed, Chapman, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, barefoot, choice, forgotten, future, oasis, orchards, precious, soothed, towns, violin, wagons, who’d

Chapter Seven: Johnny Appleseed
It was a long time back. It was in the rolling hills. That’s where Johnny Appleseed lived. John did not have a home. He went across the land. He went from Massachusetts to Pennsylvania. He went from Ohio to Indiana to Illinois. He wasn’t born with that name. He got it as he moved around. You’ll learn how he got that name. You’ll learn why he was a hero.

John was born in Massachusetts. His name was John Chapman. When he grew up, he made up his mind. He’d roam across the land. You could tell from his clothes that he was poor. His clothes were beat up. He walked around barefoot. He had no shoes. And that was even in the winter. His hat was ripped up. You could see his hair through it. Yes, he was lonely and poor. But John had a brave heart. He knew of the power of love. He loved all the people he met. He loved all the animals he met. He thought he loved all people and all animals in the world! And that was even though he’d not met them!


The people he met liked him. They’d ask him to share in a small meal. He’d smile and say, “Yes.” He owned one thing. A violin. He’d take it out when done eating. He’d play for the those who’d been kind to him. His music might be happy. It might be sad. Folks loved to hear him play. It did not matter whether his tunes were happy or sad. Folks said it soothed their soul. It made them feel good. 

John lived his grown-up life this way. He went from place to place. He lived as best he could. You might think he left no mark on the world. You might think he’d be long forgotten. How could he have left a mark? He was just a poor old man. He just roamed the land. But John DID leave a huge mark! And what he did got him his name, Johnny Appleseed. Few knew what he had done at the time. Time has to pass to see results of good work.

Here’s what he did. He’d collect apple seeds. Lots of kind folks gave him apples to eat. He’d save their seeds! He’d plant them in the rich Earth. He’d plant them each place he went.


Winter would come. The ground would be frozen. He’d save the seeds in his pockets. They were precious to him. Then, spring would come. He’d plant again. He’d plant each place he went. John hoped for something. He wished for orchards to grow. He wished that his seeds would turn to orchards! There would be lots of fruit trees. They’d grow up from the rich soil. They’d feed the people and animals he loved. John did this a long time. One day, his tired old body could plant no more. This is a happy tale. What John hoped for came to pass. The seeds took root. Young saplings grew up. The years went by. Pretty apple trees came to dot the land. Apple orchards popped up like an oasis. They were all over the wide-open prairies.

Time passed. More people moved West. There were wagons full of them. They hoped to build a good life out there. They rolled across the land. Then, the railroad brought even more folks. They would all search for new places to make a home.


Lots of folks made a good choice. They’d build their homes near John’s trees. The sight of the trees gave folks hope. They wished for a good future. Farm homes and towns were built. They, too, were near John’s trees. He was now a hero. He was now called Johnny Appleseed.

The years went by. Folks would harvest apples from John’s trees. They’d store them for the winter. They’d make pies. They’d make apple butter and jam. Kids played by the trees. They’d sit in their cool shade. What John did for America was wonderful. That’s because he’d cared for all the people of the world. And it didn’t matter if he knew them or not.

Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 25 – Part Seven 

NEW WORDS: conifers, deciduous, dormant, equals, evergreen, evergreens, ferns, loses, sheds, tricky, unique

Chapter Eight: Deciduous Trees 
There are lots of kinds of plants in the world. Each is unique. Each is special in its own way. But most land plants are either deciduous or evergreen. Deciduous plants lose their leaves. Evergreens don’t. They’re always green. Even in winter.

Here’s an apple tree in the winter. It sheds its leaves each year. It’s deciduous. That’s a tricky word to say. That word has four parts. Use the four parts to help you. Four syllables equals four seasons. Seasons go in a cycle. They repeat over and over again. You know! Spring, summer, fall, and winter. Fall can also be called “autumn.”

Let’s start with spring. That’s when new things start to grow. The apple tree grows new leaves. It grows blossoms. You know Polly the Honeybee. She gets to work this time of year. She’ll take nectar from inside flowers. She’ll fly from flower to flower. She’ll spread pollen. That helps apples grow.

Move to summer. The apple tree grows lots more leaves. Apples grow out of the blossoms.


Move to fall. Apples are fully grown. It’s time to pick them. The leaves change to red and yellow. They fall to the ground. Time will pass. The leaves on the ground break down to small bits. They’ll be nutrients in the soil.

Here’s a winter apple tree again. The seasons repeat in a cycle. This tree has bare branches again. They’re empty. There are no leaves or covering. That’s ’cause plants don’t get as much sun in the winter. They get more sun in spring and summer. Where apple trees can grow, it gets cold. There’s less light from the sun. So, the tree’s leaves can’t make food. There’s no photosynthesis in winter. Without food, it must save energy. It becomes “dormant.” It stops to make leaves, blossoms, and apples. Its branches are bare.

Here’s an apple tree in all four seasons. Remember, it’s deciduous. It loses its leaves each year. Spring brings pretty white blossoms. In summer, you can climb its branches. You can sit under the shade of its green leaves. You can watch the apples as they grow. In fall, you can pick the fruit. You can watch its leaves change colors. Then you’ll see the leaves fall off. In winter, you can play in the snow under its bare branches.


Trees are special to humans in lots of ways. And, they’re important in nature. They help in some ways more than any other plant. They help keep the air clean. They help make it safe to breathe. You’ll learn more about that later. And, they’re food and home for lots of animals. Do this the next time you see a deciduous tree. Wrap your arms around it. Give it a big hug. Show it you know how important it is.


Chapter Nine: Evergreen Trees
These trees are evergreens. In some ways, they’re like deciduous trees. And some ways they’re not. Evergreens have leaves. They stay green year-round. They come in lots of shapes and sizes. They have one thing in common. They’re always green. Are there some of these trees near you?

One type is a pine tree. They have a nice smell. Lots of folks like that smell in their homes. You’ll find it a lot at Christmas.

Evergreen leaves are called “needles.” Here are the needles of a pine tree. Evergreens, too, make food through photosynthesis. It happens in the needles. It even happens a bit in winter.

These needles aren’t as big as deciduous leaves. That helps them make food in the winter. The needles are alive year-round.

You might see these on their branches. You might see them on the ground. They’re called “cones.” (Or “pine cones.”) Most evergreens are “conifers.” That means they have needles AND cones.


 Deciduous trees have flowers and fruit. Conifers don’t. Instead, they make cones. Seeds grow inside their cones. A cone opens on the ground. The seeds fall out. They’re spread by the wind. A seed might fall into soil. What happens if it has food, water, air, and light? It might grow to be a seedling. And then later, a sapling.

These plants are ferns. They’re not trees. They’re short plants. They grow in the woods. But look closely. There’s another plant here. It’s a pine sapling. It’s a baby tree. See it push up through the ferns? It might be a strong sapling. It could grow into a pine tree. It would stand high above the ferns! It might make its own pine cones. And its seeds will be in the cones.

Did you know this? Trees add a new layer of wood each year. It forms what’s called a “growth ring.” You’ll see them in a cut down tree. They’re in the trunk. They tell you how old the tree is! Count the rings!

This tree was fifty years old. That’s young for a tree. A tree can grow to at least a hundred. You’d count a hundred growth rings.

Let’s sum it up. We learned of deciduous trees and evergreens. They’re the two main types of trees in the world. Do this the next time you see a tree. Try to figure out which type it is. The leaves may give you your first clue!








The burrs on these machine parts are lowering the quality of our final product.


The lad grew up in a burgh near Edinburgh.


Their army was not strong enough to take over burgs that had strong fortifications.


Edmund Burke was a U. K. statesman, economist, and philosopher who lived in the 1700s.


The photographer had an odd attraction to taking shots of tree burls.


Rubbing alcohol burns if you pour it on an open cut.


I love the burnt crust on top of the dessert creme brulee.


The bully let out three rude, loud burps and got sent to the Principal.


I store some extra cash in a burse on the top shelf of my bedroom closet.


The dam burst, and roiling floodwaters headed toward the town.


Police were located at many curbs to help manage the crowds during the annual parade.


Little miss Muffet sat on her tuffet, eating her curds, and she gagged.


Betty has such pretty, natural curls in her hair.


The Scooby-Doo episode was called “The Curse of the Mummy Who Sneezed.”


Centuries ago, their family lineage had been curst by an evil witch.


That baseball pitcher can throw a killer curve ball.


Last year The Black Knight durst Sir Lancelot to compete in a joust.


The judge’s white wig had the hair rolled up into furls.


The small fishing boat was being tossed about in a powerful gurge.


Every time that track star hurls the javelin, she lets out a loud shriek.


My left hip hurts when I have to climb stairs.


My friend Kurt’s cat scratched me today.


What evil creature lurks in the water below our boat?


My Mom has been a nurse throughout her entire career.


The King made a purge of all government officials who had been stealing money.


Our cat purrs non-stop when she hops up into my lap.


We gave Mom a pretty new leather purse for Christmas.


My friend Andy surfs in big competitions.


Lately, there seems to be a surge in computer-hacking activity.


When you cross this field of cattle, make sure that you don’t step on their turds.


The Turks do not get along with their neighbors the Kurds.


Take three more right turns, and we’ll be there.


Can you buy some wurst at the butcher’s?


The hill was covered with yurts that were set up my the Mongolian nomads.


We’ve got to come up with a short, hard-hitting blurb to describe our new product.


My vision blurs if I stand up too fast from sitting on the floor.


I heard Susie blurt out, “There’s a spider on my desk!”


In China and Japan, it is considered polite to loudly slurp your noodles, as a compliment to the chef!


The politician railed at his opponent, “Your vicious slurs on my character will only get more of my backers out to vote!


I fear that I must spurn my son, as his values are now completely different from mine.


The rider lightly tapped the sides of his horse with his spurs.


Water will spurt from three different leaky places in that hose.







Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)


Lesson 26 – Part Eight 

NEW WORDS: Alabama, George, Missouri, Vera, aloe, basketballs, beauties, botanist, botanists, botany, carver, cereals, childhood, chops, cucumbers, cure, diseases, dyed, dyes, floral, fluffy, fungus, gel, generations, hiker, insect, lumber, lumberjack, makeup, mash, medicines, oils, paddy, pencils, prevents, professor, recipes, salads, saws, soothes, splits, spouts, stomach, sunburns, syrup, talent, tanks, veggie, veggies, wounds

Chapter Ten: Plants and People
We need plants! Without plants, there’d be no life on Earth. Animals, humans, and insects need plants.

First, they are food for us. People eat plant foods each day. See this woman? What’s in her mouth? It’s lettuce! Lettuce is in salads. It’s on sandwiches. It’s good for you. It’s a healthy veggie. And it comes from a plant.

Veggies are like fruit. They’re parts of plants. Let’s name some. Potatoes, beans, peas. Carrots, peppers, cucumbers, and squash. Each comes from plants. And from different parts of plants. Fruits and veggies are healthy and tasty. You should eat some each day.

Here’s an ear of corn and a cornfield. Did you know this? Corn comes from a special type of grass. Do you like corn on the cob?

Have you had bread today? It’s likely that you have eaten wheat. Wheat comes from a type of grass. Its seeds are ground up. They’re used to make wheat flour. Wheat flour is used in many things. Like breads, cereals, and cakes.


Here’s a bowl of rice and a rice paddy. A “paddy” is a “field.” Folks all over the world eat rice. It feeds billions of people each day!

You’ve just learned of three grains. Corn, wheat, and rice. Grains are seeds. They come from different types of grasses.

Plants can be used to make cloth. These “fabrics” are used to make lots of things. Clothes, blankets, and other things we use each day. This picture shows cotton plants. Fluffy, white cotton is often dyed. Dye comes in lots of colors. It makes clothes and blankets look pretty.

What might we do when folks feel sick or sad? We might give them flowers. That cheers them up. That lets them know they’re loved. Have you ever gotten, or given, flowers?

Lots of things made from plants will surprise you! Here are a few. Tires on a car are made of rubber. So are rubber bands. And basketballs. Most rubber comes from rubber tree sap.

Another sap comes from maple trees. It’s clear and it tastes good. Maple syrup! We get it in early spring. Folks drill small holes in the trunks of maple trees. They put in spouts. Sap drips out of them. It goes into buckets. They call them “holding tanks.” The sap is boiled. It turns to maple syrup. Don’t worry! The holes don’t hurt the trees! They heal in the summer and fall. Next spring, folks pick a different spot on the trunk to drill.


Medicines can come from plants. These cure diseases. They heal wounds. You have to know a lot to do this. You have to find the right kind of plant. You must know what part of the plant you need. Then you must know how to use it. Knowing plant secrets goes back generations. Parents taught children. Knowledge was passed down. It may be thousands of years old!

Here’s a useful common plant. It’s the aloe vera plant. There’s a clear gel in its thick green leaves. It helps heal small cuts. It soothes sunburns. Some folks drink parts of this plant. They think it’s good for the stomach. They think it prevents some disease.

Think how we use wood from trees. We build homes. We make lots of things. Paper, chairs, pencils. You name it! Here’s a lumberjack. He cuts down trees. He’ll use a chain saw. He’ll cut down a big pine. He chops this tree down. He saws off the branches. The bare trunk is loaded onto a truck. They’ll take it to a lumber mill. It will be turned into boards.


And we use wood to make fires. It might be cold. This keeps our homes warm. This person splits logs. They’ll be the right size to burn in the fireplace. And wood is used to make tool handles and instruments. The list goes on. Baseball bats are made from ash tree wood. That’s a strong tree! Oh, and this is important! What should you do when you cut a tree down? Plant a new one! That way we won’t run out of wood. We need forests for the future!

Here’s one last thing about plants. They help keep the air clean and fresh. This happens when they make their own food. They put oxygen into the air! We need that gas to breathe! The oxygen goes to your lungs. That keeps you alive. You need oxygen all day, each day.

You just learned a ton! Did you know that plants were so important?


Chapter Eleven: George Washington Carver
Let’s learn about a new hero. He loved plants. That’s how he got his fame. He lived from 1864 to 1943. His name? George Washington Carver. He was known all through the U.S. He was a “botany” scientist. That’s called a “botanist.” Botanists study plants. He started to learn about them when he was young.

Back then, he walked a lot in the woods. These were near his home. He grew up on a farm in Missouri. He roamed the woods all the time. He saw lots of cool things. George liked to collect things. Lots of plants caught his eye. He was curious about them.

He would find a plant. He wished to learn more. There was one problem. He wished to take them home. But what if he pulled them up? They’d die! So, he had a smart plan. He would dig it up with care. He kept the roots alive! Then he went home. He would plant it there. It could keep growing in the soil. He could study it from his home! He built a special garden to do that.


He put lots of plants in his special garden. He took good care of them. He watered them. He watched them grow. When he was grown, he wrote about his childhood. He said something like this. “I simply lived in the woods. I spent time in the woods alone. I wanted to learn about everything there. Each strange stone, flower, insect, bird, or beast. I loved to collect my floral beauties. I’d move them to my garden. It was hidden. It was near the house. It would be hard for a hiker to find it.”

He loved these plants. He looked at them for hours each day. He kept them healthy. He would tend to them. He would study them. He learned how each one had special needs. Different amounts of water. Whether they liked the sun or the shade. And he tried to help sick plants. Maybe they had a disease, like a fungus. He was great at saving them. Folks nearby called him the “Plant Doctor.”

George liked art, too. He loved to paint his plants. And he was good at it! He could not buy real painting products. He found his own way to do it. He made his paint with plants! He’d mash bark, roots, and berries. He found old boards to paint on. He might paint on flat rocks. George would paint throughout his entire life.


George had lots of talent. He was gifted. He did well in school. He learned fast. He went to college. He became a botany expert. Then he was a Professor! That was in Alabama.

That was his job for life. He learned more and more. He found ways for plants to grow better. He helped farmers to do better with their crops. He had farmers grow new crops. He thought they grew too much cotton. Some of these new ones were peanuts and sweet potatoes. And he taught us lots about peanuts. He found new ways to use them. They could help to make dyes, oils, and makeup. And he knew peanuts were tasty. He wrote new recipes for dishes that used peanuts. George Washington Carver was an amazing man. He helped to build knowledge about the science of plants!

Core Knowledge (R) Independent Reading 

(Review guidelines for publishing Core Knowledge (R) materials at the bottom of this page-view. This lesson is a “READ-ALOUD” Core Knowledge (R) passage that has been rewritten to be at a lower-grade independent reading level complexity than the original, largely by shortening and simplifying sentence structures while maintaining the richness of the text content.)

Lesson 27 – Two Famous Fables

NEW WORDS: Charlemagne, Doberman, acknowledge, acquaintances, adhered, annoy, askance, assumed, azure, blatherskite, blustered, boastful, boffo, boundaries, braggadocio, bragged, centuries, clutched, cobblestone, cocksure, cognizant, commonsensical, congregated, contemplated, covert, crawler, darted, dawdlers, drooped, emotion, empathy, endlessly, exceptional, existence, fawningly, fettle, fifteen, galumphed, gasbag, gasconade, glorious, grandiose, groveling, guffawed, halfway, hare’s, hated, hilarious, horselaugh, immediately, indubitably, insulted, isolated, jaunt, jesting, jocose, kingly, ladled, likable, location, lynx, maintained, maxim, meanest, miracle, mockingbird, molerat, momentary, napped, nibbled, obligated, onwards, overly, palavered, panicked, parading, perceived, percipient, permit, pinscher, plodded, pompous, posture, praises, prated, pretended, projecting, reflection, resumed, rewarded, riotous, rocketed, roistered, roundabout, sabotaged, satiate, satisfying, scarfed, scrounge, shire, skulker, slaughter, slowpokes, sluggards, snickered, snookered, snoot, soporific, steadfast, steadily, stock, straightforward, strode, succulent, sultry, swaggered, sycophantically, taunting, tittered, tooted, tortoise, town’s, traipsed, translucent, transpired, traverse, trumpet, tureen, uttered, vapored, vicious, visitation, witticism, yipped, yuk 

The Dog And His Reflection
It was centuries ago. There was a grandiose Doberman pinscher. His name was Charlemagne. He was parading through the cobblestone streets. He was in fine fettle this exceptional day. It was glorious weather. It was perfect for a jaunt about the shire.

He’d just had a satisfying visitation with the butcher. He’d been rewarded with a succulent bone. The dog held his head high. He held his tail stiff. He looked neither askance nor roundabout. He strode with his kingly snoot projecting straightforward. There were lots of town-dogs. They looked up to Charlemagne. They sycophantically traipsed behind him. They yipped and tittered, fawningly. They pled with their superior. “Please! Please! Permit us to smell your bone.” But the big dog went on. He maintained his haughty posture and swaggered onwards. He would not acknowledge the town-dogs’ existence. He perceived that he was better than they were. And he had no empathy for their state of hunger.

Charlemagne left the town’s boundaries. He’d gotten a mile out of town. He took a momentary rest. He could have stopped to satiate himself on the bone. But others would come to annoy him. He’d then feel obligated to share. He did not want to do that. The bone was just for him. He wished to be left alone. He contemplated a plan of action. He talked to himself. “I’ll bury my bone. I’ll take it to an isolated location. No dog can find it there. Then the right day will come. I’ll dig it up. I’ll eat it then.” He resumed his steadfast course.


He adhered to his brisk pace for some time. He came to a stream. The water was fresh and translucent. The deep blue sky gave it an azure tint. The water was fast-running. And there, he saw a bridge. It offered an easy opportunity to get to the other side. He talked to himself again. “I’ll traverse the bridge. I’ll get to the other side. I’ll scrounge around. I’ll find a covert resting place for the bone. I’ll hide the bone. I’ll dig a deep hole. I’ll bury it there.” So, he got onto the bridge. He had the bone in his teeth. He clutched his mouth tightly. The bone would not fall out.

He took a few steps. Then he looked down. What in the world? He thought he saw a dog! He was not sure. It was walking. But how strange! It walked on the top of the water! He looked and looked. Yes! It WAS a big dog. And he had a bone in HIS mouth! Charlemagne stopped. The dog below stopped, too. The big dog then walked a bit. The water-dog did, too. Could the water-dog want HIS bone? The big dog put on a fierce look. He turned his head. He faced the water-dog.


The water-dog turned. They stared straight at each other! And the water-dog looked vicious. He looked as mean as the big dog! The big dog thought to himself. “This won’t do. I want HIS bone!” So, he opened his mouth wide. He planned to take the water dog’s bone. But guess what? There was no dog in the water. The big dog was seeing his own reflection. He was not smart. He should not have opened his mouth. The bone fell out! It went “splash” in the stream. And the water current was swift. It took the bone away forever!

Here’s the moral of this percipient tale. “It’s not wise to be greedy. You may lose everything!”


The Tortoise And The Hare
There once was a boastful Hare. All he did was brag. He did it endlessly. He was like a tureen full of braggadocio soup. And he just ladled it onto all of his acquaintances. He bragged. He crowed. He prated. He tooted his own horn. He sang his own praises. He blew his own trumpet. He blustered. He roistered.

What did he gasconade about the most? The gasbag would brag about how fast he was. This went on and on. The blatherskite told the other animals that he was fast. And he insulted them all. He vapored on about how SLOW they were! “You’re slowpokes! You’re sluggards! You’re dawdlers!”

But poor Tortoise! Hare was the meanest to him! He said things like this. “Tortoise! What a dull crawler you are! I feel sorry for you. You creep along like that. You stay close to the ground. You’re a creepy, crawly, grovel