Subskill: Reading Comprehension
Concept: Fact and Opinion
Grade Level: Middle Elementary
Omar loved catching insects and lizards. He put them in jars and kept them as pets in his room. Then one morning, Omar’s mother opened his bedroom door and said, “It’s time to set all these creatures free. It looks like a zoo in here, and the smell is stinky!”
“Yes, Mom,” said Omar sadly. Then he took his jars of insects and lizards out into the backyard and set them free.
“They’ll be happier outside anyway, Omar,” his mother yelled from the porch. “Now you must promise never to bring anything else into the house to keep as a pet.” Omar promised. He knew his mother was right, but he still felt sad.
Later that afternoon, while throwing pebbles into the pond, Omar noticed a tiny green frog. He bent down, opened his hand, and the tiny frog hopped onto his palm. “Oh, I must take you home, little frog,” said Omar. “I’ll take good care of you. Your name will be Frankie the Frog. Don’t worry. My mother won’t find you. I’ll hide you under my bed.”
And so he did. Frankie the Frog lived in a glass box with pebbles and water under Omar’s bed. As the weeks passed, he grew big and strong from the insects that Omar fed him.
Then one day Omar’s mother went into his room to vacuum the floor. Frankie the Frog became very frightened by the loud noise. He pushed the cardboard top off the glass box and hopped out.
“Aaahh!” screamed Omar’s mother as she felt something land on her foot. She looked down and saw a big green frog. “Yikes!” Omar’s mother screamed again. “Rrrbit!” said Frankie the Frog as he hopped away out of the bedroom.
Just then Omar came home from school. He knew right away by the look on his mother’s face that he was in trouble. Then he saw Frankie on the kitchen table. “Don’t worry, Mom. I’ll catch him,” said Omar. But it was not so easy.
First Frankie hopped onto the sink. Then he hopped onto the chair. Next, he was sitting on top of the washing machine. Each time Omar got close enough to catch him, Frankie would jump away at the last second. Omar chased Frankie around for hours. Finally, Omar snuck up behind Frankie and cupped his hands around him as he sat on the computer keyboard. “Gottcha!” he exclaimed.
As he walked back to the pond where he first found Frankie, Omar could hear loud croaking sounds. He set Frankie free on a lily pad, and Frankie immediately dived into the pond. Omar said, “I know you are happier out here with the other frogs. I’ll come by to visit you tomorrow.”
Omar had a lot to think about as he walked back towards his house. He realized that he had learned some important lessons that day. Omar did not do what was best for Frankie the Frog by keeping him in a box under his bed. He also learned the importance of being honest and keeping a promise.
Here are some questions to ask after listening to the story:
What did Omar’s mother ask him to do?
Where did he put Frankie the Frog?
Why did Frankie want to escape?
What did Omar learn in the end?