The Kingbird – McGuffey’s 2nd Grade Reader

Grey Kingbird (Tyrannus dominicensis) by Lee at Honeymoon Is SP

McGuffey Readers were a series of graded primers for grade levels 1-6. They were widely used as textbooks in American schools from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, and are still used today in some private schools and in homeschooling. [Posting these for young readers to enjoy and practice reading while school is out.]

Here is a story of Kingbird from the Second Grade Reader. (From Gutenberg)

McGuffey Reader Set ©WikiC

LESSON XVIII.

New Words:

ber’ries strikes rob’in ea’gle short king rid

foe dart fails sharp hawk worms ac’tive

Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus) by Margaret Sloan

THE KINGBIRD.

1. The kingbird is not bigger than a robin.

2. He eats flies, and worms, and bugs, and berries.

3. He builds his nest in a tree, near some house.

4. When there are young ones in the nest, he sits on the top of a tree near them.

5. He watches to see that no bird comes to hurt them or their mother.

6. If a hawk, a crow, or even an eagle comes near, he makes a dash at it.

7. Though he is so small, he is brave, and he is also very active.

8. He never fails to drive off other birds from his nest.

9. He flies around and around the eagle, and suddenly strikes him with his sharp bill.

10. He strikes at his eye, and then darts away before the eagle can catch him.

11. Or he strikes from behind, and is off again before the eagle can turn round.

12. In a short time, the great eagle is tired of such hard blows, and flies away. He is very glad to get rid of his foe.

13. Is not the little fellow a brave bird?

14. Because he can drive off all other birds, he is called the KINGBIRD.

“Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.” (1 Corinthians 16:13 NKJV)

***


Title: McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader – Gutenberg – Author: William Holmes McGuffey

Release Date: June 29, 2005 [EBook #14668] – Language: English

Wordless Birds

More McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader Stories

The Owl – McGuffey’s 2nd Grade Reader

Western Screech Owl (Megascops kennicottii)(captive) by Raymond Barlow

Western Screech Owl (Megascops kennicottii)(captive) by Raymond Barlow

McGuffey Readers were a series of graded primers for grade levels 1-6. They were widely used as textbooks in American schools from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, and are still used today in some private schools and in homeschooling.

LESSON LII.

oak dusk fight squeak ruf’fled

bag Fred whoo a wake’ creep’ing

THE OWL.

1. “Where did you get that owl, Harry?”

2. “Fred and I found him in the old, hollow oak.”

3. “How did you know he was there?”

4. “I’ll tell you. Fred and I were playing ‘hide and seek’ round the old barn, one night just at dusk.

5. “I was just creeping round the corner, when I heard a loud squeak, and a big bird flew up with something in his claws.

6. “I called Fred, and we watched him as he flew to the woods. Fred thought the bird was an owl, and that he had a nest in the old oak.

Barn Owls (Family Tytonidae) with catch ©Pixelbirds

7. “The next day we went to look for him, and, sure enough, he was there.”

8. “But how did you catch him? I should think he could fight like a good fellow with that sharp bill.”

9. “He can when he is wide awake; but owls can’t see very well in the daytime, and he was taking a nap.

Northern Barred Owl (Strix varia) LPZ by Dan 2014

Northern Barred Owl (Strix varia) LPZ by Dan 2014

10. “He opened his great eyes, and ruffled up his feathers, and said, “Whoo! Whoo!’ ‘Never mind who,’ Fred said, and slipped him into a bag.”

Eurasian Eagle-Owl (Bubo bubo) by Nikhil Devasar

Eurasian Eagle-Owl (Bubo bubo) by Nikhil Devasar

May kinds of owls are mentioned in the Bible. Most of them are listed as birds to not eat.

“… the short-eared owl, ;… the little owl, the fisher owl, and the screech owl; the white owl,… (Leviticus 11:16-18 NKJV)

McGuffey’s Reader for 2nd Grade:

ABC’s of the Gospel

More McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader Stories

What A Bird Taught – McGuffey’s 2nd Grade Reader

MacGillivray's Warbler

[Illustration: Bird perched on tree branch.] MacGillivray’s Warbler

LESSON XI.

twit-twee bough (bow) twit-twit top’most lock

spray mate close’ly ros’y an’swer (an’ser)

WHAT A BIRD TAUGHT.

1. Why do you come to my apple tree,
Little bird so gray?
Twit-twit, twit-twit, twit-twit-twee!
That was all he would say.

2. Why do you lock your rosy feet
So closely round the spray?
Twit-twit, twit-twit, twit-tweet!
That was all he would say.

3. Why on the topmost bough do you get,
Little bird so gray?
Twit-twit-twee! twit-twit-twit!
That was all he would say.

4. Where is your mate? come, answer me,
Little bird so gray.
Twit-twit-twit! twit-twit-twee!
That was all he would say.
Alice Cary.

***


Title: McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader – Gutenberg – Author: William Holmes McGuffey

Release Date: June 29, 2005 [EBook #14668] – Language: English

“And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.” (Matthew 18:5 KJV)

Wordless Birds

More McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader Stories

Bird Friends – McGuffey’s Third Reader

Sparrow on Branch ©©Bing

Sparrows on Branch ©©Bing

LESSON XVI. BIRD FRIENDS.

1. I once knew a man who was rich in his love for birds, and in their love for him. He lived in the midst of a grove full of all kinds of trees. He had no wife or children in his home.

2. He was an old man with gray beard, blue and kind eyes, and a voice that the 49 birds loved; and this was the way he made them his friends.

3. While he was at work with a rake on his nice walks in the grove, the birds came close to him to pick up the worms in the fresh earth he dug up. At first, they kept a rod or two from him, but they soon found he was a kind man, and would not hurt them, but liked to have them near him.

Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) by Nikhil Devasar

4. They knew this by his kind eyes and voice, which tell what is in the heart. So, day by day their faith in his love grew in them.

5. They came close to the rake. They would hop on top of it to be first at the worm. They would turn up their eyes into his when he spoke to them, as if they said, “He is a kind man; he loves us; we need not fear him.”

6. All the birds of the grove were soon his fast friends. They were on the watch for him, and would fly down from the green tree tops to greet him with their chirp.

American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by J Fenton

American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by J Fenton

7. When he had no work on the walks to do with his rake or his hoe, he took crusts of bread with him, and dropped the crumbs on the ground. Down they would dart on his head and feet to catch them as they fell from his hand.

8 He showed me how they loved him. He put a crust of bread in his mouth, with one end of it out of his lips. Down they came like bees at a flower, and flew off with it crumb by crumb.

House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) Five ©Indiatoday

House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) Five ©Indiatoday

9. When they thought he slept too long in the morning, they would fly in and sit on the bedpost, and call him up with their chirp.

10. They went with him to church, and while he said his prayers and sang his hymns in it, they sat in the trees, and sang their praises to the same good God who cares for them as he does for us.

Indigo Bunting ©WilliamWisePhoto.com

11. Thus the love and trust of birds were a joy to him all his life long; and such love and trust no boy or girl can fail to win with the same kind heart, voice, and eye that he had.

Adapted from Elihu Burritt.

ellow Warbler singing by J Fenton

Yellow Warbler singing by J Fenton

With my mouth I will give thanks abundantly to the LORD; And in the midst of many I will praise Him.
(Psalms 109:30 NASB)

Title: McGuffey’s Third Eclectic Reader, Author: William Holmes McGuffey
Release Date: January 23, 2005 [EBook #14766]

McGuffey’s Third Grade Reader

Bible Birds – Sparrows

Wordless Birds

Fish Hawk – McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader

Eastern osprey by Ian

GRANDFATHER’S STORY.

1. “Come and sit by my knee, Jane, and grandfather will tell you a strange story.

2. “One bright Summer day, I was in a garden in a city, with a friend. “We rested underneath a fig tree. The broad leaves were green and fresh.

3. “We looked up at the ripe, purple figs. And what do you think came down through the branches of the fig tree over our heads?”

4. “Oh, a bird, grandfather, a bird!” said little Jane, clapping her hands.

5. “No, not a bird. It was a fish; a trout, my little girl.”

6. “Not a fish, grandfather! A trout come through the branches of a tree in the city’! I am sure you must be in fun.”

7. “No, Jane, I tell you the truth. My friend and I were very much surprised to see a fish falling from a fig tree.

8. “But we ran from under the tree, and saw a fishhawk flying, and an eagle after him.

9. “The hawk had caught the fish, and was carrying it home to his nest, when the eagle saw it and wanted it.

Osprey and Eagle Fighting ©WikiC

10. “They fought for it. The fish was dropped, and they both lost it. So much for fighting!”

Western Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) dropping this fish ©Flickr Andy Morffew

Western Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) dropping this fish ©Flickr Andy Morffew

***

“Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?” (James 4:1 NKJV)

Both of these birds are mentioned in the Bible:


Title: McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader – Gutenberg – Author: William Holmes McGuffey

Release Date: June 29, 2005 [EBook #14668] – Language: English

Wordless Birds

More McGuffey’s Second Grade Reader Stories

Norman Joins The Baseball Team

Wood Stork up close by Lee at Lake Morton

Wood Stork up close by Lee at Lake Morton

Norman Joins The Baseball Team

by Emma Foster

 

There once was a stork named Norman. Every morning from a high spot in a tree he would watch the children from a nearby neighborhood walk down the street to the bus stop. The bus stop was right next to the zoo, which was where Norman lived.

His favorite part of the day, though, was when some of the kids came to the baseball field to practice. The field was right next to the zoo, and Norman enjoyed the game of baseball so much he decided to join the team.

The coaches were a little shocked at first to see that a stork was trying out for the team, but they decided to give Norman a chance. Norman was given his very own baseball bat, and he stepped up to the plate.

The first time Norman swung at the ball he missed, and a fifth grade boy yelled, “Strike one!” Norman hit the ball the second time, and flew to first base. It was then that Norman learned that you weren’t supposed to fly in baseball, and you had to make sure your baseball bat didn’t go flying as well.

Norman didn’t make it to first base anyway. One of the boys grabbed the ball off the ground and threw it to another boy at first base. The coach said that Norman was out, but Norman was still welcome on the team.

The first game was that Saturday. It was the last inning and Norman was up to bat. The bases were loaded.

The other team’s pitcher threw the ball, Norman swung the bat, and the ball sailed up into the sky. It was a home run! Norman and his team won the game, and Norman was allowed to stay on the baseball team.


Woodstork & Lee by Dan at Lake Morton

Woodstork & Lee by Dan at Lake Morton

Lee’s Addition:

Where the birds make their nests; The stork has her home in the fir trees. (Psalms 104:17 NKJV)

Thanks, Emma, for another delightful story, this time about Norman.

Emma is a teenager now, and I suggested she write us another story. This was her latest then. See her other ones in the Bird Tales section.

Norman might be that friendly Stork that hangs out at Lake Morton I encountered recently. Didn’t see a baseball cap though.
Emma Foster’s Previous Stories:

Emma’s Stories

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ABC's of the Gospel

  
  ABC’s of the Gospel
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