Lesson 4: The Long Rifle

Getting Started

Questions to Explore

  • How do family members depend on one another?

Facts and Definitions

  • People's names, the beginning letter of a sentence, geographical place names, holidays, days of the week, months of the year, and titles should be capitalized.


  • Use correct capitalization in writing. (LA)
  • Share an oral project through presentation. (LA)
  • Identify (with assistance) the purpose, audience, and appropriate format for an oral presentation. (LA)
  • Connect own experiences with the experiences, language, customs, and culture of others through speaking and listening. (LA)
  • Adapt speech communication to the audience, purpose, and occasion. (LA)
  • Compare language and oral traditions (family stories) that reflect customs, regions, and cultures. (LA)


  • Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • journal


Tell your child that in today's reading, Laura and Mary will spend time with their father. Ask your child what she likes to do with her father. Discuss that family members need one another, not just to help out with the chores, but also for love and support.
Reading and Questions
Materials: Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder, journal
Today your child will read the chapter "The Long Rifle" and answer the following questions.
  1. Why do you think Pa made his own bullets?
    Answers will vary, but your child should understand that many items would be difficult for the family to purchase, so they had to make most things themselves.
  2. Retell the story (out loud) that Pa told the girls about the time he went looking for the cows in the woods.
    Answers will vary but should include the following plot: Pa had to bring the cows home from the woods every day, and he was not supposed to play on his way because the cows had to get home before dark due to wild animals. On one particular day, he was pretending to be a hunter, but when he was done, it was dark in the woods, and he could not find the cows. As he was searching, he heard a voice in the woods repeat, "who?", and then he ran all the way home. His father punished him for disobeying.
  3. Why do you think Pa told Laura and Mary the story about the cows and not obeying his father?
    Answers will vary.
  4. Can you think of a time you did not listen to your mom or dad and things turned out badly?
    Answers will vary.