McGuffey’s Third Reader – The Little Bird’s Song

Bell's Vireo (Vireo bellii) by Kent Nickell

Bell’s Vireo (Vireo bellii) by Kent Nickell

THE LITTLE BIRD’S SONG.

1. A little bird, with feathers brown,
Sat singing on a tree;
The song was very soft and low,
But sweet as it could be.

2. The people who were passing by,
Looked up to see the bird
That made the sweetest melody
That ever they had heard.

3. But all the bright eyes looked in vain;
Birdie was very small,
And with his modest, dark-brown coat,
He made no show at all.

4. “Why, father,” little Gracie said
“Where can the birdie be?
If I could sing a song like that,
I’d sit where folks could see.”

Philadelphia Vireo (Vireo philadelphicus) by Kent Nickell

Philadelphia Vireo (Vireo philadelphicus) by Kent Nickell

5. “I hope my little girl will learn
A lesson from the bird,
And try to do what good she can,
Not to be seen or heard.

6. “This birdie is content to sit
Unnoticed on the way,
And sweetly sing his Maker’s praise
From dawn to close of day.

“To the end that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.” (Psalms 30:12 NKJV)

7. “So live, my child, all through your life,
That, be it short or long,
Though others may forget your looks,
They’ll not forget your song.”

Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus) by Raymond Barlow

Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus) by Raymond Barlow

“All the earth shall worship You And sing praises to You; They shall sing praises to Your name.” Selah” (Psalms 66:4 NKJV)


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

 

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net

 

McGuffey’s Third Reader – Humming Birds

Rufous-tailed Hummingbird (Amazilia tzacatl) by Judd Patterson

Rufous-tailed Hummingbird (Amazilia tzacatl) by Judd Patterson

LESSON XXI. HUMMING BIRDS.
McGuffey's Third Eclectic Reader from Gutenberg.org

McGuffey’s Third Eclectic Reader from Gutenberg.org

1. The most beautiful humming birds are found in the West Indies and South America. The crest of the tiny head of one of these shines like a sparkling crown of colored light.

2. The shades of color that adorn its breast, are equally brilliant. As the bird flits from one object to another, it looks more like a bright flash of sunlight than it does like a living being.

Magnificent Hummingbird (Eugenes fulgens) by Judd Patterson

Magnificent Hummingbird (Eugenes fulgens) by Judd Patterson

3. But, you ask, why are they called humming birds? It is because they make a soft, humming noise by the rapid motion of their wings—a motion so rapid, that as they fly you can only see that they have wings.

4. One day when walking in the woods, I found the nest of one of the smallest humming birds. It was about half the size of a very small hen’s egg, and was attached to a twig no thicker than a steel knitting needle.

Vervain Hummingbird (Mellisuga minima) WikiC

Vervain Hummingbird (Mellisuga minima) WikiC

5. It seemed to have been made of cotton fibers, and was covered with the softest bits of leaf and bark. It had two eggs in it, quite white, and each about as large as a small sugarplum.

6. When you approach the spot where one of these birds has built its nest, it is necessary to be careful. The mother bird will dart at you and try to peck your eyes. Its sharp beak may hurt your eyes most severely, and even destroy the sight.

7. The poor little thing knows no other way of defending its young, and instinct teaches it that you might carry off its nest if you could find it.

“If a bird’s nest happens to be before you along the way, in any tree or on the ground, with young ones or eggs, with the mother sitting on the young or on the eggs, you shall not take the mother with the young;” (Deuteronomy 22:6 NKJV)

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

The Owl – McGuffey’s Second 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

 

McGuffey’s Third Reader – BIRD FRIENDS

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]

What A Bird Taught – McGuffey’s Second 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