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Name____________________________________ Date__________________________

Read the story “An Early Morning Mystery” and the poem “The Alarm Clock” before answering the questions below.

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An Early Morning Mystery

“Tap, tap, tap!”

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bed.

Tanisha stirred in her

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“Tap, tap, tap!”

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With one leg poking out from under a thick quilt, Tanisha slowly opened one eye. Shafts of sunlight pierced the white curtains covering the window and streaked across the floor like arrows from a bow.

Her other eye fluttered open. She lazily lifted her head from the pillow.

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“What was that?” whispered Tanisha. All she heard was the soft ticking of her alarm clock sitting on the dresser. “Maybe it’s the…”

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“Tap, tap, tap!”

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Tanisha shot up like the little man in a jack in the box. “There it is again!” she said, throwing her legs out from the quilt and over the side of the bed. She stood up and wobbled to the window. Pulling back the curtain, Tanisha squinted through the panes of glass.

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“I think it’s coming from outside,” Tanisha said, “but where? I hope nothing is wrong.”

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Tanisha stood still and tried to be as quiet as a fox in a hen house. Her gaze shifted from one side of the backyard to the other. Nothing moved except for a few budding leaves at the top of a tall tree in the back corner. Silence once again covered the room like a freshly fallen snow on a wind blown meadow. Tanisha waited but nothing else broke through the quiet.

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Only partially convinced that she wouldn’t hear the sound again, Tanisha shuffled over to her bed. Crawling under the quilt, she tried to fall back to sleep. “I really do need to get up. It’s Monday. I am supposed to go down to the food closet to help make lunch.”

She closed her eyes and began to drop off.

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“Knock, knock, knock!”

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“Tanisha, it’s time to get up. The morning is almost half over. You must have been really tired from going to the beach yesterday. But you wanted to get an early start to spring vacation,” said an older white haired woman in a dark blue cotton robe.

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“Did you hear it, Grandma?” asked Tanisha, rubbing her eyes. “Did you hear the noise? I think there might be a problem somewhere.”

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Grandma sat down on the edge of Tanisha’s bed. “What noise is that, dear?” she asked.

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“It’s a tapping kind of noise,” answered Tanisha. “It sounds like it’s coming from the backyard, but whenever I go to look, it stops.”

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“Well, Grandpa was fixing the fence and working on the new shed earlier, but he stopped over an hour ago,” replied Grandma.

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“I don’t think that was it,” said Tanisha. “I heard it only a few minutes ago.”

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“Please get up, dear,” said Grandma, patting Tanisha’s leg. “There’s a hot breakfast waiting for you in the kitchen.

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Tanisha got up, pulled on a robe of her own, and followed her grandmother into the kitchen. Sure enough, a plate piled high with eggs, bacon, toast, and hash brown potatoes sat steaming at the head of the small table in the corner of the room. A short glass of orange juice rounded out the meal.

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“Wow, Grandma,” exclaimed Tanisha, “you went all out for my breakfast. It looks great. Thank you, Grandma.”

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Tanisha’s grandmother smiled and then hugged her. “You need a good first meal of the day if you are going to be as busy as you hope to be on this vacation. Oh, don’t forget to call your mom at your house before you leave.” Grandma left the room and returned to the kitchen.

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After breakfast, Tanisha returned to her bedroom to clean up and get dressed. As she stood in front of a mirror, she heard the noise again.

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“Tap, tap, tap!”

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“There it is again,” Tanisha mumbled. “I’m really beginning to wonder what that is.” She knew it wasn’t her grandfather. She could hear his deep voice through the walls as he talked with Grandma in the kitchen. Could it be a neighbor working on a car?

Maybe someone next door is getting a new roof put on their house? Or a gardener puttering around in a vegetable garden?

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Rushing into the last of her clothes, Tanisha burst out of the room. She flew past a somewhat startled pair of grandparents, and dashed into the backyard. A few quick steps brought her to the middle of the yard. Tanisha froze and waited, her head cocked to the side, straining to hear the sound again. She didn’t have to wait long.

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“Tap, tap, tap!”

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Tanisha turned to focus on the tall tree that stood at the back of the yard. Once more she heard the three taps. Her eyes scoured the tree. Then she saw the source of the tapping. A small black and white bird clung to the side of the tree, near the top. Using its sharp, pointed bill, it pounded the bark. “Tap, tap, tap!”

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“So you are the one that is making all that racket,” smiled Tanisha. “Now that I know what it is, I can settle down and get on with my vacation. I do not have to worry anymore. Good luck finding insects, Mr. Woodpecker.”

The Alarm Clock

A soft sigh escapes my lips,

My dreams float up like clouds.

Then, tap, tap, tap,

I hear a sound, a sound that’s oh, so loud.

I squeeze my sleeping eyes tight shut.

What is that grating noise?

I just don’t want to leave my dreams.

Could it be one of my toys?

The sound invades my sleeping thoughts,

Is it a knocking at the door?

I wonder if it’s Mom’s high heels,

Tapping across the floor.

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I open just one single eye,

And see the daylight here.

I still can hear that tap, tap, tap.

It seems so very near.

I stumble to the window,

To peek outside the sill.

A little splash of red I see,

A quickly moving bill.

That woodpecker is busy,

1.

Making holes high in the tree.

I don’t need an alarm clock,

With him up there to wake me.

Use “An Early Morning Mystery” to answer questions 1 through 5.

Objective 2

(A.2 – Plot, Setting, Problem, and Solution) (TEKS 4/5 – 6A)

Read the diagram of information from the story.

Problem Solution

Tanisha is unable to figure out where a noise is coming from at her grandmother’s house.

Which of the following should go in the empty box?

A.

B.

Tanisha notices someone working on their car.

Tanisha notices a neighbor getting a new roof.

C.

Tanisha looks in a tree and finds a woodpecker tapping the bark.

D.

Tanisha looks in the backyard to see her grandfather fixing the fence.

Objective 1

(B.1 – Details) (TEKS 4/5 – 6A; 11A)

2.

What is Tanisha going to do when she gets up this Monday morning?

F.

G.

H.

J.

help fix lunch go to the beach work in the garden build a new shed

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Objective 4

(A.1 – Inferences) (TEKS 4/5 – 4; 5; 11A)

3.

The reader can tell that Tanisha

A.

B.

C.

D.

is visiting her grandparents. wants to get back to her own home. does not get along with her grandparents. does not have any friends.

Objective 4

(B.1 – Responses with Text Support) (TEKS 4/5 – 11C)

4.

Which sentence from the story shows that Grandma cares about Tanisha?

F.

G.

J.

H.

Grandma sat down on the edge of Tanisha’s bed.

Grandma left the room and returned to the kitchen.

“Well, Grandpa was fixing the fence and working on the new shed earlier, but he stopped over an hour ago.”

“You need a good first meal of the day if you are going to be as busy as you hope to be on this vacation.”

Objective 2

(A.1 – Character Analysis) (TEKS 4/5 – 6B)

Short Answer

5.

How does Tanisha feel about the noise she hears? Use information and details from the story to support your answer.

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Use “The Alarm Clock” to answer questions 6 through 8 below.

Objective 1

(A.1. – Word Meaning – Prefixes, Suffixes, Root Words) (TEKS 4/5 – 2A)

6.

Read the line from the poem.

The sound invades my sleeping thoughts,

Which words best fit the way

invades

is used in the poem?

A.

B.

C.

D.

F.

to find

G.

to want

H.

to enter

J.

to search

Objective 2

(A.1 – Character Analysis) (TEKS 4/5 – 6B)

7.

What does the poet want to be able to do in the poem? dream hear talk walk

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Objective 2

(A.2 – Plot, Setting, Problem and Solution) (TEKS 4/5 – 6A)

Short Answer

8.

When does the poet start letting you know what is making the noise in the poem?

Also, at what place in the poem can you be sure what is making the noise? Give details from the poem to support your answer.

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Use “An Early Morning Mystery” and “The Alarm Clock” to answer questions 9 and 10.

Objective 4

(B.2 – Compare and Contrast Across Texts) (TEKS 4/5 – 11C; Gde. 5 – 11E)

9.

How are the poet in “The Alarm Clock” and Tanisha in “An Early Morning

Mystery” alike?

A.

B.

C.

D.

Both are on vacation.

Both are trying to sleep.

Both want to play with toys.

Both want to help with lunch.

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Objective 3

(A.2 – Similarities and Differences Across Texts) (TEKS 4/5 – 11C; Gde. 5 – 11E)

10.

One way these selections are alike is that both mention

F.

going outside.

G.

eating breakfast.

H.

looking out of a window.

J.

having dreams while sleeping.

Guided Reading and More 4/5.9 © 2009 readingwarmupsandmore.com

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“An Early Morning Mystery” / “The Alarm Clock”

Introducing the Selections

1.

Have the students tell about their last spring vacation. Let them share their experiences and how they felt.

(TEKS 4/5 – 27A; 28)

2.

Ask the students to read the title of the story and the poem. Get them to look at the pictures that accompany the selections. Discuss with the students what they think the story and poem will be about. Discuss what the girl may be feeling as she looks out of the window. Have them predict what they think may be the mystery.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 3A,B; 8; 9;

11C; 27A; 28; Gde. 5 – 11E)

3.

Ask students to talk about a mystery they have had. Have them tell how they felt about not knowing what it was. Then have them talk about how they felt once the mystery was solved.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 9; 27A)

4.

Ask students to think of a time when it was hard for them to stay sleeping. Have them explain what woke them up and/or kept them from sleeping.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 9)

5.

Remind the students of the things they can do and the strategies they can use when they are trying to figure out what an unknown word may be. Students may get their mouths ready to say the first letter and think of what would look right, sound right, and make sense. They may try a word and reread to see if it fits.

(TEKS 4/5 – 2A,B,E)

Reading the Selections

1.

Have the students read the story and poem. Tell them to read to find out what kinds of feelings the characters have about the mystery.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 2B; 6B; 9)

2.

Select individual students to read aloud. Check to see what strategies the students use to figure out unfamiliar words. Note problem areas and provide immediate help or schedule instruction to help with the problem(s) at a future time. Also, note strengths that the students exhibit.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 2A,B,E; 9)

Discussing the Selections

1.

Have the students complete the questions following the passages.

(TEKS 4/5 – 9)

2.

Discuss with the students what Tanisha is feeling as she tries to find out about the mystery. Have the students tell if their predictions about the mystery were correct or not.

Have them explain when they realized what the mystery turned out to be.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 4;

5; 6A,B; 9; 10; 11A,C; 12; 13A; 14C; 27A,B; 28; Gde. 5 – 14D)

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3.

Talk with students about what the poet did to stay asleep. Ask them to think of other things the poet could have tried or done to stay sleeping.

(TEKS 4/5 – 1; 3A; 6A; 8; 9; 11C;

27A; 28; 29)

4.

Discuss the story with the students. Have them tell what happened at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end. Ask them to explain the problem and solution. Have the students complete the graphic organizer.

(TEKS 4/5 – 3A; 6A; 11C; 13B; 24Aiii)

5.

Talk with students about phrases or lines in the poem that provide the reader with word pictures. Use the graphic organizer to record a phrase or line and then make a picture bringing the phrase or line to life.

(TEKS 4/5 – 3A; 4; 5; 6A; 7; 8; 12; 13A,B; 24Aiii; 26;

Gde. 5 – 12A)

Graphic Organizers

1.

Story Map – Have the students fill in the story map for “An Early Morning Mystery”

(TEKS 4/5 – 3A; 6A,B; 11C; 13B; 24Aiii)

.

2.

Poem – Have the students write a phrase or line from the poem on lines provided and then illustrate it in the space underneath. Fill in the rest of the lines and boxes with lines or phrases from the poem and pictures.

(TEKS 4/5 – 2C; 3A; 4; 5; 7; 13B; 24Aiii)

Higher Level Vocabulary

“An Early Morning Mystery” – puttering (Grade 8), focus (Grade 7), scoured (Grade 7), source (Grade 6), racket (Grade 6)

(TEKS 4/5 – 2A,B)

“The Alarm Clock” – grating (Grade 10)

(TEKS 4/5 – 2A,B)

Guided Reading and More 4/5.9 © 2009 readingwarmupsandmore.com

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STORY MAP

Name:________________________________

Title:

Setting: Characters:

Place:

Problem:

Events

Leading to

Solution

Solution:

Time:

Date________________

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Word Pictures

Name:______________________________

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Date:_______________

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Guided Reading and More 4/5.9 © 2009 readingwarmupsandmore.com

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Answer Key: “An Early Morning Mystery” / “The Alarm Clock”

1.

C

2.

3.

F

A

4.

J

5.

Extended Answer – Best-Score Response – A best-score response tells how

Tanisha feels about the noise she hears, using information from the story.

Example of a Best-Score Response – Tanisha feels worried about the noise she hears. It wakes her up. She looks out of the window to try and find what it is. She does not just ignore it or forget about it. She feels that someone might be in trouble or is having a problem. Tanisha asks her grandmother about the noise. Tanisha goes out into the backyard to try and find the noise. She is relieved when she finally finds out what the noise is.

6.

H

7

.

A

8.

Extended Answer – Best-Score Response – A best-score response gives details from the poem that show when the poet suggests that it is a bird that is making the noise and tells that it is a woodpecker.

Example of a Best-Score Response – The poet first lets the reader know that the noise is being made by a bird when the poet uses the words “a little splash of red I see, a quickly moving bill”. The person has looked outside of the window to see this. The poet lets the reader know that the bird is a woodpecker by writing that the bird is making holes up in a tree outside with a tap, tap, tapping sound.

9.

10.

B

H

Guided Reading and More 4/5.9 © 2009 readingwarmupsandmore.com

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