8th Grade - Reading Comprehension Success

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Transcript of 8th Grade - Reading Comprehension Success

8TH GRADE READING COMPREHENSION SUCCESS

LEARNINGEXPRESS SKILL BUILDERS

8TH GRADE READING COMPREHENSION SUCCESSElizabeth Chesla

New York

Copyright 2001 LearningExpress, LLC. All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. Published in the United States by LearningExpress, LLC, New York.

Printed in the United States of America 98765432 First Edition ISBN 1-57685-391-8 For more information or to place an order, contact LearningExpress at: 55 Broadway 8th Floor New York, NY 10006 Or visit us at: www.learnatest.com

An Important Note to Our Library ReadersIf you have checked this book out from your school or public library, please do not write in the book itself. Instead, use a separate notepad to write down your answers, so that other readers in your library can reuse this material. Thank you for your help and for your consideration of others.

CONTENTSHow to Use this Book Pretestix xi 1 3 11 17 23 31 37 39 45 51 59 65 73 75 83 89 97 105

SECTION 1: BUILDING A STRONG FOUNDATIONLesson 1: Becoming an Active Reader Lesson 2: Finding the Main Idea Lesson 3: Dening Vocabulary in Context Lesson 4: Distinguishing between Fact and Opinion Lesson 5: Putting It All Together

SECTION 2: STRUCTURELesson 6: Chronological Order Lesson 7: Order of Importance Lesson 8: Similarities and Differences: Comparison and Contrast Lesson 9: Cause and Effect Lesson 10: Putting It All Together

SECTION 3: LANGUAGE AND STYLELesson 11: Point of View Lesson 12: Word Choice Lesson 13: Style Lesson 14: Tone Lesson 15: Putting It All Together

8TH GRADE READING COMPREHENSION SUCCESS

SECTION 4: READING BETWEEN THE LINESLesson 16: Finding an Implied Main Idea Lesson 17: Assuming Causes and Predicting Effects Lesson 18: Emotional versus Logical Appeals Lesson 19: Uncovering Meaning in Literature Lesson 20: Putting It All Together Post-Test Appendix: Suggested Reading for 8th Graders

113 115 121 127 133 141 151 165

HOW TO USE THIS BOOK

E

ighth grade is an exciting year full of changes and challenges. Its also an important year academically. As an eighth grader, youll be required to take tests that measure your reading, writing, and math skills. This year is also your last chance to brush up your academic skills before high school. And because youll need to read for almost all of your classes, reading comprehension is perhaps the most important set of skills youll need to succeed. In eighth grade and beyond, youll be asked to read, understand, and interpret a variety of texts, including stories and poems, reports, essays, and scientic and technical information. While a lot of your learning will still take place in the classroom, youll be expected to read more and more information on your own, outside class. Youll need not only to understand what you read but also to respond to and assess what you read. And as the texts you read become more complex, youll spend a lot more time reading between the lines and drawing your own conclusions from the text. As you work through the lessons in this book you will build your critical reading and thinking skills. Each of the 20 short lessons should take about a half hour to complete. Youll start with the basics and move into more complex reading strategies. While each chapter can be an effective skill builder on its own, it is important that you proceed through this book in order, from Lesson 1 through Lesson 20. Each lesson builds on skills and ideas discussed in the previous chapters, and as you move through this book and your reading comprehension skills improve, the practice passages will become longer and more difcult.

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HOW TO USE THIS BOOK

The lessons are divided into four sections. Each section focuses on a different group of related reading comprehension strategies. These strategies are outlined at the beginning of each section and reviewed at the end of the section in a special Putting It All Together lesson. Each lesson includes several exercises for you to practice the skills you have learned. To be sure youre on the right track, at the end of each lesson youll nd answers and explanations for the practice questions. Youll also nd a section called Skill Building until Next Time after each practice session. These are helpful suggestions for practicing your new skills.

This book also includes a pretest and post-test. To help you measure your progress, do the Pretest before you begin Lesson 1. The Pretest will give you a sense of your strengths and weaknesses so you can focus on specic chapters. After you nish the lessons, take the Post-test. Youll be able to see how much your reading comprehension skills have improved. Youll also be able to nd out if there are areas in which you may still need practice.

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LearningExpress Skill Builders

PRETEST

B

efore you begin, nd out how much you already know about reading comprehensionand how much you need to learn. Take this pretest. These 40 multiple-choice questions cover all of the topics in this book. If your score is high, you might move through this book more quickly than you expected. If your score is low, you may need more than 30 minutes to get through each lesson. On the following page there is an answer sheet, or you can just circle the correct answers. If you dont own this book, write the numbers 140 on a sheet of paper, and write your answers next to the numbers. Take as much time as you need for this test. Then use the answer key at the end of the test to check your answers. The key tells you which lesson covers the strategy in that question. Good luck!

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8TH GRADE READING COMPREHENSION SUCCESS PRETEST ANSWER SHEET

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15.

a a a a a a a a a a a a a a a

b b b b b b b b b b b b b b b

c c c c c c c c c c c c c c c

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30.

a a a a a a a a a a a a a a a

b b b b b b b b b b b b b b b

c c c c c c c c c c c c c c c

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40.

a a a a a a a a a a

b b b b b b b b b b

c c c c c c c c c c

d d d d d d d d d d

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LearningExpress Skill Builders

PRETEST

Directions: Read each passage below carefully and actively. Answer the questions that follow each passage.

ECOSYSTEMSAn ecosystem is a group of animals and plants living in a specic region and interacting with one another and with their physical environment. Ecosystems include physical and chemical components, such as soils, water, and nutrients. These components support the organisms living in the ecosystem. Ecosystems can also be thought of as the interactions among all organisms in a given habitat. These organisms may range from large animals to microscopic bacteria and work together in various ways. For example, one species may serve as food for another. People are part of the ecosystems where they live and work. Human activities, such as housing developments and trash disposal, can greatly harm or even destroy local ecosystems. Proper ecosystem management is crucial for the overall health and diversity of our planet. We must nd ways to protect local ecosystems without stiing economic development.

QUESTIONS 1. Which sentence best expresses the main idea of this passage? a. Our actions can have a great impact on our ecosystems. b. Ecosystems have been badly managed in the past. c. Humans must clean up their trash. d. Ecosystems interact with one another. 2. Which of the following best sums up the activities within an ecosystem? a. predatorprey relationships b. interactions among all members c. humananimal interactions d. human relationship with the environment 3. An ecosystem can most accurately be dened as a. a specic place. b. a community of plants and animals. c. a group of animals working together. d. a protected environment.

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8TH GRADE READING COMPREHENSION SUCCESS

THE STORY OF DR. MUDDOn the night of April 14, 1865ve days after the Civil War endedPresident Abraham Lincoln was attending the theater in Washington, D.C. In the middle of the performance, an actor named John Wilkes Booth, seeking to avenge the defeat of the South, slipped into the presidential box and shot the President. Booth escaped the theater but broke his leg when he leaped from the Presidents box seat to the stage. Before anybody could stop him, he limped out the back door, mounted a waiting horse, and disappeared into the night with a fellow conspirator. Five hours later, at four oclock in the morning, Booth and his companion knocked on the door of Samuel Mudd, a doctor living in southern Maryland. Dr. Mudd knew nothing about the assassination of the President, and acting as any doctor would to a stranger in distress, set the leg and persuaded the two travelers to stay in his house for the rest of the night. The next morning, Booth and his friend, using false names, paid the bill and departed. Because of this merciful act, Dr. Mudd was arrested, taken to Washington, and tried on the charge that he was a friend of Booths and therefore helped plan the assassination. Dr. Mudd insisted that he knew nothing of the plot. But the military courts, angry at the Presidents death, sentenced the unfortunate doctor to life imprisonment. Dr. Mudd was imprisoned at Fort Jefferson, an island fortress in the middle of the sea about 120 miles west of the southern tip of Florida. As horrible and unjust as this punishment must have been, a greater plight lurked at Fort Jefferson. The warm, humid climate was a perfect breeding groun