In this assessment, you'll review your ability to answer comprehension questions based on five different texts. May take approximately 45 minutes to complete but take all the time you need.
You must answer assessment questions based on the following 5 extracts. To read the extract again click on the Help button in the questions.
Poem is by A.A. Milne, the creator of Winnie the Pooh.
Wind on the hill
No one can tell me,
Where the wind comes from,
Where the wind goes.
It's flying from somewhere
As fast as it can,
I couldn't keep up with it,
Not if I ran.
But if I stopped holding
The string of my kite,
It would blow with the wind
For a day and a night.
And then when I found it,
Wherever it blew,
I should know that the wind
Had been going there too.
So then I could tell them
Where the wind goes...
But where the wind comes from
Poem is by Emily Dickinson, a 19th Century American poet.
The Wind begun to rock the Grass
The Wind begun to rock the Grass
With threatening Tunes and low,
He flung a Menace at the Earth,
A Menace at the Sky.
The Leaves unhooked themselves from Trees
And started all abroad;
The Dust did scoop itself like Hands
And throw away the Road.
The Wagons quickened on the Streets,
The Thunder hurried slow;
The Lightning showed a Yellow Beak,
And then a livid Claw.
The Birds put up the Bars to Nests,
The Cattle fled to Barns;
There came one drop of Giant Rain,
And then, as if the Hands
That held the Dams had parted hold,
The Waters Wrecked the Sky,
But overlooked my Father’s House,
Just quartering a Tree.
Extract from Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. Oliver Twist has just been born in a Victorian workhouse. (A workhouse is like a prison where poor people could work for no money but for food and a place to sleep).
What an excellent example of the power of dress, young Oliver Twist was! Wrapped in the blanket which had hitherto formed his only covering, he might have been the child of a nobleman or a beggar; it would have been hard for the haughtiest stranger to have assigned him his proper station in society. But now that he was enveloped in the old calico robes which had grown yellow in the same service, he was badged and ticketed, and fell into his place at once- a parish child- the orphan of a workhouse- the humble, half-starved drudge- to be cuffed and buffeted through the world- despised by all, and pitied by none.
Extract from A Christmas Carol, also by Charles Dickens. The Cratchit family, who are poor but respectable, are being described.
There was nothing of high mark in this. They were not a handsome family; they were not well dressed; their shoes were far from being water-proof; their clothes were scanty; and Peter might have known, and very likely did, the inside of a pawnbroker's. But, they were happy, grateful, pleased with one another, and contented with the time; and when they faded, and looked happier yet in the bright sprinklings of the Spirit's torch at parting, Scrooge had his eye upon them, and especially on Tiny Tim, until the last.
Read this article, written by a student for their secondary school newspaper.
More swimming lessons in school-time!
For ages, my friends and I have asked why P.E. seems squeezed out of the curriculum; as if it is a second-class subject to more 'academic' ones like Maths and Science. Even when we do P.E. and lessons are not cancelled in exam periods or for other 'more important' things, we only get to go swimming in year 7 for half a term. That's six lessons. Six lessons in five years. How stupid is that?
I asked Mrs Brute, head of P.E. in our school, why this was the case. She said that “Swimming lessons are expensive and older students often don't want to go. Rather than waste money, we bought three trampolines for the sports hall instead.” A good answer, you might think. But ask yourselves this: is a trampoline likely to save your life?
A recent survey for the Amateur Swimming Association discovered that 51% of seven- to 11-year-olds could not even swim the length of a standard pool. I know this is talking about primary school students, but if we get barely any lessons in secondary school, how are we supposed to improve on this? There are three main reasons why we need more swimming lessons:
- Exercise. To combat obesity. This is a major problem amongst teenagers today.
- Lifesaving skills. We live on an island, we go to the beach or use swimming pools on holiday.
- Cost. Yes, it may be expensive for the school, but it is MORE expensive for us out of school. Schools have budgets for stuff like this. We don't need any more trampolines!
So fight with us to stay healthy - sign our petition today!