"Terrible Things"

In the children's book by Eve Bunting, the animals can talk, but they are not lovable, since the story is an allegory of the Holocaust. Shiver at this list of terrible words.

Here are all the word lists to support the reading of Grade 8 Unit 3's texts from SpringBoard's Common Core ELA series: Night, First They Came for the Communists, Terrible Things, The Diary of Anne Frank, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, The Diary of a Young Girl, Elie Wiesel Speech, Do Something!, Wangari Maathai, Freerice.com, Public Service Announcements, Famine as a Weapon
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Explore the Words

definitions & notes only words
  1. shadow
    a dominating and pervasive presence
    They stopped at the edge of the clearing and their shadows blotted out the sun.
  2. thunder
    utter words loudly and forcefully
    "We have come for every creature with feathers on its back," the Terrible Things thundered.
  3. twitter
    make high-pitched sounds, as of birds
    The little fish leaped from the water to show the shine of their scales, but the birds twittered nervously in the tops of the trees.
  4. riddance
    the act of removing something
    "Those birds were always too noisy," Old Porcupine said. "Good riddance, I say."
  5. clearing
    a treeless tract of land in the middle of a wooded area
    Now there were no birds to sing in the clearing.
  6. thump
    a heavy dull sound
    Little Rabbit heard the thump of their terrible feet before they came into sight.
  7. rump
    fleshy hindquarters; behind the loin and above the round
    The little fish leaped from the water to show the smooth shine of their finned tails and the rabbits turned their rumps so the Terrible Things could see for themselves.
  8. chitter
    make high-pitched sounds, as of birds
    The squirrels chittered their fear and ran high into the treetops.
  9. greedy
    immoderately desirous of acquiring something
    "Those squirrels were greedy," Big Rabbit said.
  10. rumble
    a loud, low, dull, continuous noise
    Little Rabbit heard the rumble of their terrible voices.
  11. spiral
    move in a looping or zigzag course
    The frogs dived deep in the forest pool and ripples spiraled like corkscrews on the dark, brown water.
  12. dart
    move with sudden speed
    The little fish darted this way and that in streaks of silver.
  13. shimmer
    shine with a weak or fitful light
    But the Terrible Things threw their terrible nets down into the depths and they dragged up the dripping frogs and the shimmering fish and carried them away.
  14. nervous
    causing or fraught with or showing anxiety
    A nervous silence filled the clearing.
  15. quiver
    shake with fast, tremulous movements
    The rabbits stopped quivering.
  16. bristle
    rise up as in fear
    The porcupines bristled with all their strength.
  17. prickly
    very irritable
    "Those porcupines always were bad tempered," Big Rabbit said shakily. " Prickly, stickly things!"
  18. gleam
    a flash of light
    Little Rabbit saw the terrible gleam of their terrible eyes through the forest darkness.
  19. scamper
    run or move about quickly or lightly
    The rabbits scampered in every direction.
  20. empty
    holding or containing nothing
    When they had all gone Little Rabbit crept into the middle of the empty clearing.
Created on December 15, 2014 (updated September 15, 2015)

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