Read the text below, and answer the questions that follow.
1. I was sitting in science class one day when I felt like I couldn’t tolerate it for a moment longer. The way Mrs. Pickens’ tired, monotonous voice went on and on made science class so boring. Just once, I wished my teacher’s tone would change. Maybe something could distract her for a moment. I hoped that one day she might say something funny. Or she could ask a question and actually have her voice go up at the end. Maybe it would be even better if I could have a volume button, I thought. That way, I could just turn the volume all the way down and make Mrs. Pickens inaudible. That would fill me with glee, I thought with a tiny smile.
2. Just as I was dying of boredom, an interesting thing happened. The interruption was right on time as far as I was concerned. Sammie Walker burst abruptly through the door. He was wild eyed, disheveled, and in a huge hurry. The way he was rushing in, I almost expected Mr. Jones, the school principal, to come running in behind him, ready to apprehend Sammie. Sure, he was a little late, but the way we felt about Mrs. Pickens, Sammie was the lucky one to be late. The rest of us were sorry we’d been on time.
3. "Sorry, Mrs. Pickens," Sammie apologized as his classmates stared. This incident was nothing new. Sammie always looked a little rumpled. I mean, most fifth-graders might be a little unkempt and out of sorts by the end of the day, but Sammie always looked like he had rolled out of bed already messy. I wondered if he even owned a comb. He sheepishly looked around the room at all the faces peering at him.
4. At any rate, Mrs. Pickens was unmoved by Sammie’s dramatic entrance and apology. In fact, she seemed irritated. I guess he had stopped her in mid-bore. Mrs. Pickens simply nodded poor Sammie toward his desk and continued with her monotonous lesson. Looking around, Sammie seemed to realize that not only was he late, but he had nothing he needed— no book, no paper, nothing to write with. This was a problem, and Sammie knew it. It would only be a short matter of time before Mrs. Pickens would be all over him for being unprepared for class. In most cases, kids might be so bold as to ask the teacher for some supplies, but we all knew Mrs. Pickens was as stingy as Scrooge. Poor Sammie looked helplessly around at his classmates, hoping to scrounge up what he needed for class.