Farmer Boy

farmer boy

Section 1: School-Saturday Night

  1. flounder: to struggle to move or obtain footing; to thrash about wildly
  2. glorious: marked by great beauty or splendor; delightful; wonderful
  3. immense: marked by greatness especially in size or degree; supremely good
  4. impudent: failing to show proper respect and courtesy; very rude
  5. interfere: to become involved in the concerns of others when such involvement is not wanted
  6. meek: enduring injury with patience and without resentment; not violent or strong
  7. tempt: to entice to do wrong by promise of pleasure or gain
Vocabulary Sentences
  1. The toddler began to flounder in the pool when she realized her toes could not touch the bottom.
  2. The glorious sunset caught my eye, with its red, purple and orange hues.
  3. The impudent child threw the cookie on the ground after his mother said he could only have one treat that day.
  4. Joan asked Johnny not to interfere when she was correcting his sister Meg.
  5. The boys decided to tempt their puppy by waving treats in front of his nose.
Comprehension Questions
  1. The big boys who go to school in the middle of winter determine to thrash the teacher and break up the school. (pg. 5)
  2. Almanzo goes into the barn to clean each stall so that the animals have fresh beds of hay to sleep on. (pg. 14-18)
  3. Jonas Lane was hurt so badly by the Hardscrabble boys that he died. (pg. 29)
  4. After supper each night, Almanzo takes care of his moccasins by holding them in the heat and rubbing them with tallow. (pg. 30)
  5. Almanzo notices that popcorn kernels come in different shapes and there are never two alike. (pg. 34)
  6. Almanzo’s father wakes the young cattle at midnight and makes them run around until they are warmed up from exercising. (pg. 36)
  7. Almanzo’s father lends Mr. Corse his blacksnake whip to help teach Big Bill Ritchie and the other boys a lesson. (pg. 44-47)
  8. Almanzo’s mother is weaving cloth for Royal’s new suit when he goes to the Academy next winter. (pg. 62)
  9. The perfect weather for cutting ice is when it is so cold that the snow is like sand, and a little water thrown into the air comes down as tiny balls of ice, and the snow does not soften at all during the day. (pg. 65)
  10. The ice blocks don’t melt even in the hottest summer weather because they are buried in sawdust and have to be dug out one at a time. (pg. 74)
  11. Almanzo’s mother prefers not to waste time turning her doughnuts, because it is quicker to twist them. (pg. 76)
  12. Almanzo doesn’t like Saturday night because there was no cozy evening by the heater and it was also bath night. (pg. 76)

Section 2: Sunday-Cold Snap

  1. basin: a wide, shallow, usually round dish or bowl, used for holding liquids
  2. furrow: a trench in the earth made by a plow
  3. intense: done with great energy, enthusiasm, or effort; having very strong feelings
  4. sedate: keeping a quiet, steady attitude or pace
  5. splendid: impressive in beauty, excellence, or magnificence; excellent
  6. trudge: to walk or march steadily and usually with much effort
  7. wallow: to roll about in or as if in deep mud; to seem to want to be unhappy
Vocabulary Sentences
  1. Her grandmother enjoyed washing vegetables in the basin while they talked about the events from the day.
  2. The Van Gogh painting was absolutely splendid to look at, with the different brush strokes and magnificent colors.
  3. The three year old girl felt intense excitement when she walked into Disneyland for the first time.
  4. Melissa did pout and wallow in self-pity after not getting her own way.
  5. Michael put on his best boots because he knew he would need to trudge through deep snow all the way to grandma’s house.
Comprehension Questions
  1. Stacked pancakes are ten pancakes cooked on the griddle, with butter and maple sugar. (pg. 85)
  2. The Wilder family keeps warm in their buggy with buffalo-skin robes covering them and hot bricks at their feet. (pg. 88)
  3. Almanzo convinces his father to let him stay home from school by saying that he has had more lessons than the calves and they are younger than he is. (pg. 96)
  4. Almanzo and his father go out to the maple grove to collect sweet maple sap into their buckets. (pg. 110)
  5. Almanzo and Royal spend days in the cellar sorting through the fruit and vegetables and scrubbing the cellar clean. (pg. 118-119)
  6. Almanzo tells Alice the right time to plant corn is when the ash leaves are as big as squirrel’s ears. (pg. 131)
  7. Almanzo thinks the best time of all will be coming after supper because Mr. Brown tells the funniest stories and sings the best songs. (pg. 136)
  8. Mr. Brown gives Eliza Jane six diamond-shaped patty-pans to bake cakes in, six heart-shaped pans to Alice, and a red tin horn to Almanzo. (pg. 139)
  9. Almanzo’s mother is scared after his father sells the colts because she does not want to keep all the money in the house overnight. (pg. 146)
  10. Almanzo’s father suspects that the horse-buyer was part of robbing the farmer near Malone. (pg. 152)
  11. During sheep-sheering, Almanzo’s job is to carry the fleece upstairs, lay it out on the loft floor, and then run back downstairs to get more fleece. (pg. 157-158)
  12. Almanzo and his family pour water on the every hill of corn to help save it when it freezes. (pg. 170-171)

Section 3: Independence Day-Fall of the Year

  1. aggravate: to make worse, more serious, or more severe; to make angry usually by bothering again and again
  2. deserve: to be worthy of; to have earned because of some act or quality
  3. dread: to fear or dislike greatly; to be very unwilling to face; great fear, especially of something that will or might happen
  4. independence: the quality or state of not being under the control of, reliant on, or connected with someone or something else
  5. solemn: very serious or formal in manner, behavior, or expression; done or made seriously or thoughtfully
  6. temptation: the act of considering or causing to consider doing something wrong or unwise; something that causes a strong desire
  7. wither: to become dry and sapless; to lose vitality, force, or freshness
Vocabulary Sentences
  1. Daniel thought it was funny to aggravate the cat by pulling her tail.
  2. The beautiful bouquet began to wither after Monique forgot to put them immediately into a water vase.
  3. Rebecca’s face was solemn as she prayed for her kitten to feel better soon.
  4. Mariah deserved to win the triathlon because she committed to training herself for over a year.
  5. She faced her parents with dread as they told her the consequences for lying to them about her test score.
Comprehension Questions
  1. When Almanzo asks his father for a nickel, his father gives him a half-dollar because of his help in raising half a bushel of potatoes. (pg. 181-184)
  2. Almanzo enjoys going fishing with his father on rainy days. (pg. 195-197)
  3. When Almanzo goes berry picking he sees a black bear, but it only eats berries and then runs back into the woods. (pg. 200-201)
  4. The first thing the children do when their mother and father go on vacation is make ice cream. (pg. 205-207)
  5. Almanzo gets angry and accidentally throws the blacking-brush and smeared blacking on the parlor wall. Eliza Jane fixes the stain without telling Almanzo and he apologizes for his behavior toward her. (pg. 220-226)
  6. Almanzo helps during the oat harvest by binding the oats into sheaves, and then shocking the sheaves after the reapers stop reaping. (pg. 234)
  7. Almanzo’s mother gets the money from selling her butter to the butter-buyer. (pg. 238)
  8. While Almanzo is roasting potatoes, one of the roasting potatoes explodes and the hot inside of it hit Almanso and burned his eyelid and cheek. (pg. 247-248)
  9. Almanzo’s father tells him never to bet his money on another man’s game. (pg. 256)
  10. Almanzo enjoys eating all the different foods while everyone else is merry during dinner. (pg. 262)
  11. Almanzo is nervous about telling the judges how he grew the pumpkin because he is afraid they will think he tried to cheat. (pg. 273)
  12. At the end of butchering time, Almanzo helps his mother with candle-making. (pg. 283-284)

Section 4: Cobbler-Farmer Boy

  1. clench: to hold tightly; to set or close tightly
  2. envy: a desire to have a quality, possession, or other desirable attribute belonging to someone else
  3. deportment: the way that a person behaves, stands, and moves, especially in a formal situation
  4. measly: so small or unimportant as to be rejected with scorn
  5. mortify: to cause someone to feel very embarrassed and foolish
  6. placid: calm and peaceful
  7. stingy: not liking or wanting to give or spend money; not generous
Vocabulary Sentences
  1. It is better to be thankful for all that you have been given, instead of choosing to envy what others have.
  2. Abigail enjoyed reading her book on a blanket, next to the placid lake.
  3. Instead of clenching her teeth, Mary decided to take deep breaths when she felt angry.
  4. The two boys always treated their little brother as measly, until he grew up to be taller and stronger than both of them.
  5. Jenny felt mortified when her mom brought out her baby pictures to show her friends.
Comprehension Questions
  1. Royal has to go to the Academy wearing last year’s boots because the cobbler did not come in time. (pg. 286)
  2. Almanzo’s mother thinks he is being spoiled because his father wants to get boots for him. (pg. 289)
  3. Eliza Jane’ is mortified that her father drinks tea from his saucer. (pg. 296)
  4. When the bobsled is done, Almanzo wants to make a wood-rack for it before chore time. (pg. 304)
  5. Almanzo’s father thinks the threshing machine is a lazy man’s way to thresh, and the machine chews up the straw so that it can’t be used to feed stock and then scatters the grain around and wastes it. (pg. 308)
  6. On stormy nights throughout the winter, the wheat, oats, beans and Canada peas needed to be threshed. (pg. 310)
  7. Almanzo and Frank and arguing in the barn because Frank teases him about not being allowed to ride Starlight and also because Frank frightens the colt. (pg. 320-323)
  8. Almanzo’s father tells him that accidents will happen, but that he needs to be more careful next time because men must look out for themselves in the timber. (pg. 335)
  9. Almanzo’s father decides Almanzo must go back to school because farmers need to not only know how to read and write, but also how to figure. (pg. 342)
  10. Almanzo’s father invites him to go to town to sell the load of hay because Almanzo is old enough to learn hay-baling. (pg. 345)
  11. Mr. Paddock demands Mr. Thompson to give Almanzo two hundred dollars for calling him a thief and a beggar. (pg. 356)
  12. Almanzo decides that he wants to be a farmer just like his father. (pg. 371)