McGuffey Reader and Poetry



  1. Listen to the kitchen clock!
    To itself it ever talks,
    From its place it never walks;
    “Tick-tock-tick-tock: ”
    Tell me what it says.
  2. “I’m a very patient clock,
    Never moved by hope or fear,
    Though I’ve stood for many a year;
    Tick-tock-tick-tock: ”
    That is what it says.
  3. “I’m a very truthful clock:
    People say about the place,
    Truth is written on my face;
    Tick-tock-tick-tock: ”
    That is what it says.
  4. “I’m a most obliging clock;
    If you wish to hear me strike,
    You may do it when you like;
    Tick-tock-tick-tock: ”
    That is what it says.
  5. “I’m a very friendly clock;
    For this truth to all I tell,
    Life is short, improve it well;
    Tick-tock-tick-tock: ”
    That is what it says.
  6. What a talkative old clock!
    Let us see what it will do
    When the hour hand reaches two;
    “Ding-ding–tick-tock: ”
    That is what it says.



1. “Herbert, will you please peel my orange?” said Lucy. Herbert was reading his new book, but he put it down at once, and took the orange from his little sister.

2. “Shall I make a pair of scales, Lucy, for you to use when you play store?”

3. “Oh yes! but how can you do that’!”

4. “I’ll show you. First, we must take the peel off in two little cups, one just as large as the other. While I do this, see if you can find me two nice sticks about ten inches long.”

5. Lucy ran out to the woodhouse to find the sticks.–” Will these do?”

6. “No, they are too hard. Find some pine sticks if you can.”

7. “Here are some.”

8. “These will do nicely. Now I must make a scale beam and a post. Can you find me a little block for a post, Lucy’!”

9. “Will a ribbon block do, Herbert?”

10. “Yes, if it is not too thick.”

11. “Here is one an inch thick.”

12. “That will be just right. Now get the little gimlet.”

[Note: a gimlet is a hand tool with a spiraled shank, a screw tip, and a cross handle; used for boring/drilling holes]

13. Herbert worked away until he had made the beam and the post. Then he made a hole in the middle of the block, and put the post in. Next, he put the beam into a little groove at the top of the post, so that it would balance nicely.

14. “Now, Lucy, we must have a needle and some thread. We must put four threads to each cup; then we will tie the threads to the ends of the beam.

15. “There, Lucy, what do you think of that?”

16. “Why, Herbert, that is just as nice as the real scales in father’s store; and you may have all my orange for making them.”



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