"Frindle" by Andrew Clements, Chapters 1–5

Nick Allen is a lively kid with big plans. When his newest idea catches on like wildfire, Nick surprises his teachers, his school, and even himself.
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definitions & notes only words
  1. deserve
    be worthy
    Nick deserved a list all his own, and everyone knew it.
  2. plenty
    a large number or amount or extent
    One thing’s for sure: Nick Allen had plenty of ideas, and he knew what to do with them.
  3. thermostat
    a regulator for automatically regulating temperature
    The day after that Nick turned the classroom thermostat up to about ninety degrees with a little screwdriver he had brought from home.
  4. jolt
    a sudden jarring impact
    Lincoln Elementary needed a good jolt once in a while, and Nick was just the guy to deliver it.
  5. annoying
    causing irritation
    Without taking his eyes off his book, and without moving at all, Nick put his heart and soul into the highest and most annoying chirp of all: “Peeeeep!”
  6. promptly
    at once (usually modifies an undesirable occurrence)
    Janet, who was sitting four rows away from Nick, promptly turned white, then bright crimson.
  7. apologize
    acknowledge faults or shortcomings or failing
    Mrs. Avery knew she had made a mistake, and she apologized to Janet.
  8. gradual
    proceeding in small stages
    Mrs. Avery never figured out who was making that sound, and gradually she trained herself to ignore it.
  9. experiment
    the act of conducting a controlled test or investigation
    To Nick, the whole thing was just one long—and successful—science experiment.
  10. reputation
    the general estimation that the public has for a person
    In language arts, Mrs. Granger had a monopoly—and a reputation.
  11. cameo
    engraving or carving in low relief on a stone
    She had two skirt-and-jacket outfits, her gray uniform and her blue uniform, which she always wore over a white shirt with a little cameo pin at the neck.
  12. vocabulary
    a language user's knowledge of words
    All the kids at Lincoln Elementary School knew that at the end of the line—fifth grade—Mrs. Granger would be the one grading their spelling tests and their reading tests, and worst of all, their vocabulary tests—week after week, month after month.
  13. pride
    a feeling of self-respect and personal worth
    But her pride and joy was one of those huge dictionaries with every word in the universe in it, the kind of book it takes two kids to carry.
  14. essential
    absolutely necessary
    Good spelling and good grammar and good word skills are essential for every student.
  15. acquire
    gain knowledge or skills
    Clear thinking requires a command of the English language, and fifth grade is the ideal time for every girl and boy to acquire an expanded vocabulary.
  16. frantically
    in an uncontrolled manner
    He had heard all about her, and he had seen fifth graders in the library last year, noses stuck in their dictionaries, frantically trying to finish their vocabulary sheets before English class.
  17. acquaint
    cause to come to know personally
    The first day of school was always a get-acquainted day.
  18. cursive
    handwriting in which letters are connected within words
    After that there was a review paper about cursive writing, and then there was a sample sheet showing how the heading should look on every assignment.
  19. guarantee
    an unconditional commitment that something will happen
    Nick was an expert at asking the delaying question—also known as the teacher-stopper, or the guaranteed-time-waster.
  20. launch
    begin with vigor
    At three minutes before the bell, in that split second between the end of today’s class work and the announcement of tomorrow’s homework, Nick could launch a question guaranteed to sidetrack the teacher long enough to delay or even wipe out the homework assignment.
  21. oral
    using speech rather than writing
    Nicholas, will you do some research on that subject and give a little oral report to the class?
  22. supposed
    based primarily on surmise rather than adequate evidence
    This was not the way school was supposed to work.
  23. embody
    represent or express something abstract in tangible form
    Without question this modern American dictionary is one of the most surprisingly complex and profound documents ever to be created, for it embodies unparalleled etymological detail, reflecting not only superb lexicographic scholarship, but also the dreams and speech and imaginative talents of millions of people over thousands of years—for every person who has ever spoken or written in English has had a hand in its making.
  24. ingredient
    a component of a mixture or compound
    It was sort of like trying to read the ingredients on a shampoo bottle.
  25. practically
    almost; nearly
    When you’re planning to go to the carnival after school, the clocks in every class practically run backward, and the school day lasts for about three weeks.
  26. concentration
    complete attention; intense mental effort
    The class made a bunch of noise at this big number—“Ooh,” and “Wow! ” and stuff like that—and Nick lost his concentration.
  27. adjust
    place in a line or arrange so as to be parallel or straight
    Nick kept his eyes open wide and nodded, adjusted his glasses on his nose, and began to read.
  28. fascinating
    capable of arousing and holding the attention
    And isn’t it fascinating that English has more different words than any other language used anywhere in the world?
  29. identify
    recognize as being
    "Sarah, will you read the first sentence, identify the mistake, and then tell us how you corrected it?”
  30. preposition
    a word before a noun or pronoun connecting to another word
    Mrs. Granger jammed the whole day’s work into the last eight minutes, a blur of verbs and nouns and prepositions, and yes, there was another homework assignment.
Created on September 12, 2013 (updated August 14, 2019)

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