To the Student: As you read this story, find a synonym for each underlined word.

The Babysitter

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Version by Tamara Kula

When my aunt asked me to babysit my three cousins on Saturday, I was a little hesitant. I know that my cousins are always getting in trouble and misbehaving. But my aunt begged me. “Please say you can watch the kids!” she said. “I know you’re very responsible and I really need to take a trip on Saturday.”

“Well, OK,” I responded with a sigh. My aunt was so pleased that she gave me a big hug.


1. be bad: ___________

2. mature: _____________

3. content: __________

4. take care of: ___________

5. ask: _____________

6. reply: _________________

7. not wanting to do something: __________________

- - - -

When I showed up at my aunt’s house on Saturday, I was amazed to see six children! “They have a few classmates here today so they won’t get bored,” my aunt explained. The minute my aunt left, my youngest cousin Jeff burst into tears. “I want my mommy!” he cried. Then my other cousin Bill kicked his sister Angela. “Bill’s picking on me!” Angela said, and she pulled Bill’s hair to get revenge. The other three kids were also acting out, running around and screaming.


8. peers: ______________

9. start crying: ________________

10. hurt someone after they hurt you: ____________________

11. misbehave: ____________

12. surprised: ______________

13. be mean to: ___________________

- - - -

“OK, listen everyone!” I demanded. “Pay attention! I am in charge here, and if you don’t behave, I will punish you! Now, let’s go to the park and play.”

Jeff was still sniffling. “I don’t want to go to the park!” he complained. “I’m hungry!”

“Yeah, we’re hungry too!” shouted the others and all the kids ran into the kitchen like a herd of elephants. I started to clean the living room, but then I heard the sound of something breaking in the kitchen. I ran to check on the kids. “What happened?!” I demanded, looking at the broken glass on the floor.


14. soft crying: _______________

15. look at: _________________

16. be good: _________________

17. be the boss: ______________

18. listen carefully: _____________

19. order, ask: ___________

- - - -

Angela pointed at Bill and said, “Bill did it! It’s his fault!” “I didn’t do it – you’re a liar!” yelled Bill, and he stuck his tongue out at Angela. “You guys are driving me crazy!” I shouted. “Now, Bill and Angela – go to your rooms right now!” I was very upset. Bill and Angela glared at me as they left the kitchen. Angela looked bummed and Bill was in a very bad mood.


20. a person who doesn’t tell the truth: ________

21. annoy: ________

22. to be guilty: _______________

23. look at angrily: ___________

24. angry: _________________

25. unhappy: ________________

26. disappointed: ________________

- - - -

Suddenly one of the neighbor kids slipped on the broken glass and started crying. Soon he had a big bump on his head that was becoming more and more swollen. “I’m at the end of my rope!” I cried, feeling unnerved. “I want to quit this job!” Finally, my aunt returned. I just knew I would regret that I agreed to babysit. I will never watch my cousins again!


27. stop: _____________

28. big and puffy: ______________

29. lump: _____________

30. fall: ______________________

31. stressed: _____________

32. fed up: ____________________

33. when you wish you hadn’t done something: ___________________

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