A Cricket In Times Square

By George Selden
Drawings by Garth Williams
Comprehension Questions

Chapter 1   Chapter 1 Story Pod Cast 
Vocabulary: scrounging, subsided, anxiously, niche, subway
1. How did Mario's family make a living?
2. What city did Mario live in?
3. What kind of animal was Tucker?
4. How was business with the newsstand?
5. What nice thing did the conductor Paul do for Mario?
Chapter  2 Chapter 2 Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: plucked, rummaged, scornfully, peculiar
1. How did Mario know that the cricket was in the subway station?
2. What did Mario use to make a bed for the cricket?
3. How did Mama feel about the cricket?
4. What did Mario say crickets were good for?
5. Mama said the cricketer would have to go if something happened. What would have to happen?
Chapter 3
Vocabulary: eavesdropping, wistfully, liverwurst, furiously, forlornly
1. Where was Chester from?
2. What did the cricket do to get in shape?
3. What food did Chester like?
4. How Long had it been since Chester had eaten?
5. Why could Chester NOT get out of the picnic basket?
6. How did Chester know about New York?
7. How did Chester get to New York?
8. When do crickets ususally chirp?
Chapter 4
Vocabulary:looming, acquaintance, leery
1. Why did Harr NOT hurt Tucker?
2. How did Chester"sing" ?
3. What is a long hair?
4. Where did the animals go?
5. What did Times Square look like?
6. What did Chester see that made him feel better?

Chapter 5
Vocabulary:looming, acquaintance, leery
1. Why was Mario in a hurry to get to the newstand?
2.What do crickets usually eat?
3. Where did Mario take Chester?
4. What did Chester drink?
5. What did the Bellini family like to listen to?
6. Why did Mr. Smedley, the music teacher, NOT want to hold Chester?
7. Why did Mario want to go to China Town?
Chapter 6
Vocabulary: lurched, abrupt, craned, knickknacks, novelties, incense, avalanche, spire, pagoda
1. What form of transportation did Chester and Mario use to get to china Town?
2. What did Sai Fong look like?
3. What did the store look like?
4. What did the cricket cage look like?
5. Who did Sai Fong tell the story of?
6. How much did the cage cost?
7. What gift did Sai Fong give Mario for the cage?
8. What second gift did Sai Fong give Mario?
Chapter 7
Vocabulary: gaping, souffle, keen, kimono, contentment
1. What kind of food do the chinese make?
2. How did Chester feel about the cricket cage?
3. What did Tucker want to do with the cage?
4. What did Tucker want to sleep on?
5. What did Tucker use for a pillow?
6. Where did Chester sleep?

 Chapter 7-9 Vocabulary Games

Chapter 8
Vocabulary: rap, accuse, whopped, heaved, denounced, unsavory, gilded, bail, pathetic, loot, peril, goaloshes, skinflint
1. What did Chester eat? 
2. Why did Chester eat this? 
3. What did Mama hit Tucker with? 
4. What punishment did Chester and Mario get? 
5. How did Tucker get money? 
6. How much money does Tucker have? 
7. Why did the animals pay Mama back in this special way - 1 half dollar, 4 quarters, 1 dime, 5 nickels, and 15 pennies?
Chapter 9
Vocabulary: chopsticks, solemn, luscious, kumquats, mulberry 
1. Why did Mario go back to see Sai Fong? 
2. Who was with Sai Fong? 
3. What did Mario put on before the dinner? 
4. Tell one food Mario was served. 
5. What did mario eat the food with? 
6. How did Chester show he liked the Chinese food? 
7. What did the book say to feed Chester? 
8. What did the Chinese men do for a greeting? 
Chapter 10 Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: luminous, amateur, wrenched, baudeville 
1. Why were the animals celebrating? 
2. Name one food they had at the dinner party. 
3. Who was at the party? 
4. What was really special about the coke? 
5. How did Harry Cat sing? 
6. How did Chester sing? 
7. what bad thing happened at the party? 
8. How did Chester get help?
Chapter 11    Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: despair, reproach, indignantly, jinx, dwindled 
1. How much stuff did the Bellini's lose in the fire? 
2. Who did Mama blame for the fire? 
3. What name did Mama call Chester? 
4. How did the fire start? 
5. What did Chester do when he was sad?
6. How did Pap feel when he heard Chester? 
7. What kind of music did Chester play?
Chapter 12    Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: greedy, rodent, implore
1. How was Chester going to learn new songs? 
2. Because it was Sunday, what did Chester decide to sing? 
3. Did Mr. Smedley believe Chester could sing when Mama, Papa, and Mario told him that he could? 
4. What "test" did Mr. Smedley give Chester? 
5. How did Mr. Smedley feel about Chester's songs? 
6. What did Mr. Smedley do to let everyone know about Chester?
Chapter 13    Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: dazed, throngs, coaxed 
1. Why did Chester stay up most of the night? 
2. How did people in New York learn about Chester? 
3. Did everyone believe Chester was real? 
4. How many people came to listen to Chester the first day? 
5. How was the Bellini business doing? 
6. How many times a day did Chester give a concert? 
7. What did chester like to eat? 
8. How did Chester feel being famous? 
9. Why was Chester upset? 
10. When Chester was sad, where did Mama want Mario to take him? 
11. What do you think Chester decided that might make him feel relieved?
Chapter 14  Story Pod Cast
Vocabulary: ambling, wearily, summit 
1. How was Chester feeling? 
2. What time of year was it? 
3. Where did Chester want to go? 
4. How did Tucker and Harry feel about Chester going? 
5. What was the one worry Chester had about leaving? 
6. What day was the farewell performance? 
7. What was the last concert like? 
8. How many people came to the concert?

Chapter 15   Ch 15 Pod Cast
Vocabulary: compartment, muffle 
1. What did Mario and Chester do after supper? 
2. What did chester take with him? 
3. How would chester know when he reached home? 
4. How did Mario know that Chester wouldn't come back?

1. How does Mario help his family?
2. How does Mama Bellini feel about Mario's new pet? Explain.
3. If you were Mario, would you want to have a cricket as a pet? Explain.
4. Why does the friendship between Harry and Tucker surprise Chester?
5. Why was Mr. Smedley impressed with Chester Cricket?
6. What does the Bellini family enjoy very much, especially every Saturday during the winter?
7. How did Mario feel when he found out how much the cricket cage cost?

1. Why does the friendship between Tucker and Harry surprise Chester?
2. Harry cat says he is concerned about the future of Bellinis' newsstand. Why does he have this concern?
3. How does Chester feel after his first view of Times Square?
4. What was Chester's usual diet in the meadow?
5. Descrie Sai Fong. Use at least four descriptions in your answer.
6. Why does Mario look for a cricket cage in Chinatown?

1. HOw does Tucker feel about Chester'snew cage?
2. What does chester find for Tucker's new pillow?
3. At the end of Chapter 7, Chester says that he is beginning to enjoy New York. Why do you suppose this is so?
4. Chester has to make some choices after eating the two dollar bill from the cash register. What are two of the ideas that Tucker suggests?
5. Do you think it was a fair decision to make Mario replace the money that chester ruined? Why or why not?
6. Explain Sai Fong's solution to Mario's problem with Chester.
7. What attitude about money do Tucker Mouse and Mama Bellini share?
8. Why does Mario decide to return to Chinatown to visit Sai Fong?

1. What was Mr. Smedley's opinion of Chester?
2. Predict what you think will happen once the people of New York read Mr. Smedley's article in the New York Times.

Chapter 1
Vocabulary and definitions.
1. Scrounging- hunting for something
2. Subsided-quieted down
3. Anxiously- eagerly
4. Niche - special place; nook, cranny
5. Subway- underground train

Chapter 2
1. Plucked -pull at the strings of a musical instrument and quickly release.
2. Rummaged - to look for carefully.
3. Scornfully- to ridicule; make fun of.
4. Peculiar - strange or weird

Chapter 3
1. Eavesdropping - listening secretly to someone’s conversation
2. Wistfully - longing for something; wishing for something.
3. Liverwurst - sausage containing ground liver
4. Furiously - intensely ; powerfully
5. Forlornly - sadly

Chapter 4
1. looming- appearing
2. acquaintance - a person one knows, but not well.
3. leery - suspicious; afraid of

Chapter 5
1. clustered- grouped
2. din-noise
3. genius- natural ability or natural talent
4. prophesy- predict

Chapter 6
1. lurched- moved suddenly forward.
2. abrupt- sudden or quick
3. craned-turned
4. knickknacks- small ornamental objects
5. novelties - small inexpensive items
6. incense- any of a variety of substances that give off a pleasant odor when burned.
7. avalanche- anything that comes in overwhelming numbers
8. spire- top or point of a structure
9. pagoda- a temple in the form of a pyramidal tower

Chapter 7
1. gaping- looking
2. souffle'- a baked food which is made light and puffy in cooking
3. keen- eager
4. kimono- a loose outer garment with short, wide sleeves and a sash
5. contentment - satisfaction

Chapter 8
1. rap- the blame or punishment
2. accuse- to find fault or blame
3. whopped- hit ; strike
4. heaved- threw or hurled
5. denounced- criticized
6. unsavory - disagreeable or unpleasant
7. gilded- coated with a gold color
8.bail- money paid to be freed from imprisonment
9. pathetic- pitiful; sorrowful
10. loot- money
11. peril- danger
12. galoshes- boots
13. skinflint- cheapskate; miser

Chapter 9
1. chopsticks- two small sticks held together in one hand used in Asia to lift food to the mouth.
2. solemn- serious
3. luscious- delicious
4. kumquats- orange-colored, oval citrus fruit about the size of a small plum
5. mulberry- type of tree

Chapter 10
1. luminous- bright or radiant
2. amateur- a beginner ; one who is inexperienced
3. wrenched- twisted or pulled suddenly
4. vaudeville- a stage show consisting of mixed specialty acts including songs, dances, and comic skits.

Chapter 11
1. despair - to lose all hope or confidence
2. reproach- blame; censure
3. indignantly- angrily; expressing anger
4. jinx- a person or thingthat reportedly brings bad luck
5. dwindled- to become smaller; decrease

Chapter 12
1. greedy- wanting everything for oneself without thinking of others
2. rodent- gnawing mammals which include rats, mice, and squirrels
3.implore- beg

Chapter 13
1. dazed- confused
2. throngs- crowd of people
3. coax- persuade or encourage

Chapter 14
1. ambling- walking slowly
2. wearily - tired
3. summit- peak;top

Chapter 15
1. compartment- section
2. muffle- to deaden the sound

Cricket In Times Square
Unit Review

Who said these quotes?
1. “Look at them all. There’s a fortune in this. I wish one of us was big enough to pass the hat.”
2. “This velly ancient clicket cage. Once clicket who belonged to Empelor of all China lived in this cage.”
3. “That was a perfect middle “C”.
4. “It’s getting towards autumn now. And it’s so pretty up in Conncecticut.  All the trees change color.”
5. “Please, Mama, I want to keep him for a pet.”

Things to know:
1. Where did Mario find Chester?
2. How much did Mario pay for the cricket cage?
3. Who helped Chester replace the two dollar bill he ate in the Bellini’s newsstand?
4. How did Chester learn new pieces of music for his concerts?
5. Choose the character from the story who you feel is the most responsible and dependable.
6. Do you thin that the Bellini newsstand could have become successful without Chester’s help?
7. Was Mama Bellini concerned with money?
8. Did Tucker , Harry, Chester, and Mario all go to visit Sai Fong?
9. Did Chester Cricket attract people to the Bellinis’ newsstand?
10. Where did Chester prefer to sleep?
 Cricket Web Quest
 Cricket Mask

 Ms. Walter's Word Web Template

 Ms. Walter's Word Web Template with directions

 Ms. Walters' Links and Chapter Questions
Make a pagoda from pipe cleaners
Make a cricket with model magic
Practice eating with chopsticks

Station Set ups:

5 stations:

Station 1:bar graph station for foods: Create a bar graph using data from favorite foods tally. Station 2: Create a pagoda with pipe cleaners. Station 3: Create a Chinese Paper Lantern and decorate with glitter. Station 4: Draw and label a diagram of a cricket body on chart paper from a diagram. Station 5: Create a cricket from modeling clay using diagram. Station 6: WRite a cricket acrostic using a thesaurus or dictionary. Station 7: Work on a cricket webquest:http://www.education-world.com/a_tech/webquest_orig/webquest_orig007.shtml Station 8: Create a cricket mask: http://www.fanpop.com/spots/cricket/links/22604

Writing Prompt 1

Insects share our world with us.  They are almost everywhere around us.  What kind of insect do you think is the most interesting? Think about insects  that youhave learned about, read about, or observed.  WRite a paper telling about the insect that you thinkis the most interesting.  Remember to tell at least three reasons why this type of insect is interesting.  Use specific details to explain and support your reasons.  Use interesting adjectives and descriptive words to make your paper interesting to read.

Writing Prompt 2

Mario found Chester and decided to keep him for a pet.  A cricket is an unusual pet. If you could have any animal in the world for a pet what animal would it be? Why would you choose this animal?  How would you take care of the animal? Where would it live?  Does your pet possess any extraordinary characteristics like Chester?

Writing Prompt 3

Everyone has thought about trips they might take and places they would like to visit. Write a paper telling where you would go if you could go anywhere in the world that you wanted to.  Write at least 3 reasons why you would like to visit this place.  Remember to use specific details to support and explain your reasons.  Use interesting adjectves and descriptions to make your paper interesting to read.

Writing Prompt 4

Best friends are special people in our lives.  Think about your best friend and reasons why you like him or her.  Think about things that you like doing together.  Write an essay tellingyour teacher about your best firend.  Include at least three reasons why he/she is your best friend.  Remember to use specific details to explain and support your reasons.  Use interesting adjectives and descriptive words to make your paper interesting to read.  Include a short personal story about your best firend to help explain one of your reasons.