PARCC Sentence Flow Practice Questions
1. _________ of the rainbow were _________ against the bright blue sky.
1. B: Hues are colors, the main feature of rainbows, which would look vivid, not dark (E) against the bright blue sky. Textures (consistencies) are not clear (A) in rainbows like colors are. Alabaster (C) is a pearly white color not seen in rainbows. Rainbows' colors appear in curved lines, but these are not dark (D); moreover, "line" (D) grammatically disagrees with the plural verb "were."
2. The president has a ______ of ______ around him when he makes public appearances.
2. C: A hedge is a barrier, and protection is what the president needs during public appearances. A catalyst (A) is an agent of change, making no sense with the rest of the sentence or with "individuals" (A). The president needs a barrier around him for protection, not contrast (B). A derrick [(D), (E)] is a jib crane, a boom, or an oil tower and would not surround the president. A "derrick of limits" (E) around him makes no sense.
3. A small selection of terms was found at the back of the textbook. It was a...
3. A: A glossary is a list of terms used in a document and their definitions, typically found at the backs of textbooks and at the ends of chapters or articles. A preface (B) is an introduction, not a list of term definitions, and is found at the beginning of a book or article. Diction (C) is not an individual item, but a term meaning writing or speaking style or speech quality. Kefir (D) is a yogurt-like drink made from cultured milk. A dictionary (E) is a book which contains words and their meanings in alphabetical order.
4. The horror movie frightened the children. It was...
4. C: Something ghastly is frightening, such as a horror movie. Something melancholy (A) would make children sad, not frightened. Dramatic (B) is striking/moving/vivid/effective/characterized by conflict/contrast, not necessarily frightening specifically. A tragedy (D) today* ends unhappily but is not necessarily frightening (*Note: Aristotle's criteria for classical Greek tragedy did include evoking "terror and pity," but ghastly is still more synonymous with frightening than dramatic). A comedic (E) movie is funny and should make children laugh, not frighten them.
5. The book's subject matter was ________ to the ________, and it did not sell.
5. C: "Loathsome" means repulsive, hateful, or disgusting. Subject matter loathsome to people would not sell. Subject matter attractive to the masses (A) or colorful (bright, lively, interesting) to the masses (E), i.e. appealing to the majority, would sell. Subject matter "limited to the people" (B) makes no sense. Subject matter "colorful to the individual" (D) is lively and interesting to the person, which would not be a reason it did not sell.
6. The kitten was soaked to the _____ from the _____.
6. C: A (rain) storm would "soak a kitten to the skin," a familiar idiomatic expression meaning completely soaked. An abyss (A), i.e. a chasm or deep hole, would not soak anything. Craven (B) is not a noun, but an adjective meaning cowardly: persons/things, not characteristics/qualities, get soaked. "Hide" [(D), (E)] is a synonym for skin usually describing tanned leather, not a live kitten's skin; and "abyss" (D) is still wrong as in (A).