School Improvement in Maryland

Sample Items: Reading Grade 6

 (1) Selected Response Sample
Choose the word or group of words that means the same, or about the same, as the underlined word. Then mark the space for the answer you have chosen.


The batter had to check his swing to avoid a strike.

Check means _____.

  1. test
  2. stop
  3. mark
  4. choose

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_002.xml

View scoring information

 
 (2) Selected Response Sample
Choose the word or group of words that means the same, or about the same, as the underlined word. Then mark the space for the answer you have chosen.


John cast his fishing line from the boat.

In which sentence does the word cast mean the same thing as in the sentence above?

  1. The doctor put the cast on his leg.
  2. The girl cast the dog a treat.
  3. The artist cast a bronze statue.
  4. The director began to cast the play today.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_003.xml

View scoring information

 
 (3) Selected Response Sample
Read this passage from 'The Coastwatcher', a novel that takes place during World War II when the United States was at war with Germany. Then answer the following.


Read this line which is paragraph 5.
Not yet, Mama

These italicized words show Hugh's

  1. anger
  2. annoyance
  3. nervousness
  4. shock

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_027.xml

View scoring information

 
 (4) Selected Response Sample
Read this passage from 'The Coastwatcher', a novel that takes place during World War II when the United States was at war with Germany. Then answer the following.


Read what Hugh's mother says in paragraph 12.
"Oh no, you don't" she said. "Go wash off that sand."

Which word best describes the tone of Hugh's mother's words?

  1. concerned
  2. confused
  3. determined
  4. excited

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_028.xml

View scoring information

 
 (5) Selected Response Sample
Read this passage from 'The Coastwatcher', a novel that takes place during World War II when the United States was at war with Germany. Then answer the following.


Which of these questions is NOT answered by the details and events in this passage?

  1. Why does Hugh want his ocean discovery to be a secret?
  2. How determined is Hugh about ocean watching?
  3. What kind of relationship does High have with Jiggs?
  4. How observant about Hugh's behavior is his mother?

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_029.xml

View scoring information

 
 (6) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


Read the stage direction in the last line of the play.

(Grandpa Singleton winks at Grandma Singleton as Tyrone walks past him.)

What does this stage direction most help a reader understand?

  1. how Grandpa feels about the wedding
  2. how much Grandpa admires Tyrone
  3. that Grandpa approves of his family’ appearance
  4. that Grandpa knows there is no punishment

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_055.xml

View scoring information

 
 (7) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


Read Tyrone’s speech in Scene 1.

Fun—I wish we could have some fun, but we can’t do anything at all, hardly even breathe. Grandma Singleton said if we get one little spot on us, we’ll be washing dishes for 100 guests all by ourselves.

What do Tyrone’s words mostly help a reader understand?

  1. a reason for a conflict
  2. a character’s behavior
  3. the stage directions
  4. the setting

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_056.xml

View scoring information

 
 (8) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


In the stage directions for Scene 2, which of these details is most important to the plot?

  1. The one hundred guests
  2. The outlined grass stains
  3. The wedding music playing loudly and clearly
  4. The wedding rings on a willow-covered pillow

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_057.xml

View scoring information

 
 (9) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


Another good title for this play is

  1. Falling in Trouble
  2. Practicing a Wedding
  3. Washing Paper Plates
  4. Swinging from Branches

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_058.xml

View scoring information

 
 (10) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


The children’s use of the words coolest, wildest, craziest, and loudest to describe their experience shows that they are

  1. unaware of the problems created by their activity
  2. uncertain of the time left before the wedding
  3. excited about the party after the wedding
  4. happy about missing the white carpet

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_059.xml

View scoring information

 
 (11) Selected Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


The purpose of Scene 2 is to

  1. learn the children’s punishment
  2. introduce Grandpa and Grandma
  3. show Grandpa’s cleverness
  4. show the beauty of the wedding

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_060.xml

View scoring information

 
 (12) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


The purpose of this article is mostly to—

  1. share how a person became successful
  2. tell about the life story of an astronaut
  3. explain the importance of learning a skill
  4. encourage the support of space exploration

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_063.xml

View scoring information

 
 (13) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Which of these would make the best heading for paragraphs 7 through 10 of the article?

  1. Help from Parents
  2. A Second Victory
  3. Perfect Appearance
  4. A Lesson about Effort

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_064.xml

View scoring information

 
 (14) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Which of these strategies would be most helpful to someone who is checking the reliability of the information in this article?

  1. Asking about the history of Pinewood Derbies.
  2. Researching biographies of the space shuttle astronauts.
  3. Checking the flight records of the space shuttle Discovery.
  4. Investigating a list of well-known adults who were once scouts.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_065.xml

View scoring information

 
 (15) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


This article would be most useful to a student who—

  1. enjoys competing against others
  2. wants to experience space flights
  3. is interested in competing in a model-car race
  4. is studying the achievements of regular citizens

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_066.xml

View scoring information

 
 (16) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Read this sentence from paragraph 10 of the article.

This lesson stayed with me as I grew older.

Which of these phrases could replace the words "stayed with me" and NOT change the meaning of the sentence?

  1. remained in my memory
  2. became more important
  3. caused me concern
  4. made me happy

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_067.xml

View scoring information

 
 (17) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Read this sentence from paragraph 1.

This uncanny growth buttressed the cypress in the rainy season when the island was flooded with water and rendered the trees unstable.

Details in paragraph 1 show that the word "uncanny" means—

  1. awkward
  2. natural
  3. strange
  4. useless

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_068.xml

View scoring information

 
 (18) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Read this sentence from paragraph 2.

"These trees are talking to me," she realized.

The best paraphrase of this sentence is—

  1. These trees need me to stay here.
  2. These trees make wonderful sounds.
  3. These trees are important in the swamp.
  4. These trees are giving me necessary information.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_069.xml

View scoring information

 
 (19) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Which phrase best describes the relationship between Billie Wind and Petang?

  1. a pet and his owner
  2. companions on a journey
  3. friends who guard each other
  4. an endangered animal and a protector

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_070.xml

View scoring information

 
 (20) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


The appearance of the mother alligator and her babies mostly

  1. establishes changes in the mood
  2. introduces a major personal conflict
  3. presents an important set of characters
  4. emphasizes the potential danger of the setting

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_071.xml

View scoring information

 
 (21) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Why does Billie Wind back her way from the shore to the hammock?

  1. She is familiar with the trail.
  2. She is looking for food for her dinner.
  3. She wants to find stones for the fireplace.
  4. She needs to see the alligator's movements

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_072.xml

View scoring information

 
 (22) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


After reading "Swamp Talk," a reader might still want to know—

  1. why Billie Wind walks to the shore
  2. why Billie Wind is camping in the swamp
  3. how Billie Wind chooses her campground
  4. what Billie Wind plans to do in the swamp

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_073.xml

View scoring information

 
 (23) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


Read this sentence from paragraph 4.

She secured the hammock.

Which word could replace secured and NOT change the meaning of the sentence?

  1. fastened
  2. lowered
  3. patted
  4. released

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_074.xml

View scoring information

 
 (24) Selected Response Sample
Read the article titled 'Persistence' and answer the following questions. Circle the letter of the correct answer.


This article would be most useful to a student who—

  1. enjoys competing against others
  2. wants to experience space flights
  3. is interested in competing in a model-car race
  4. is studying the achievements of regular citizens

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_075.xml

View scoring information

 
 (25) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the article 'Persistence' and answer the following question.


What other title would help a reader understand the main idea of this passage? Explain how the title you selected will help the reader better understand the main idea of the passage.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_020.xml

View scoring information

 
 (26) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the story 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following question.


Explain the mood the author creates in paragraph 7. In your response, use examples from the paragraph that show how the author creates this mood. Write your answer on your answer document.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_021.xml

View scoring information

 
 (27) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the story 'Swamp Talk' and answer the following question.


Explain how Billie Wind demonstrates her understanding of the setting. In your response, use details and examples from the story that support your explanation.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_022.xml

View scoring information

 
 (28) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the story 'Saints and Strangers on the Ship of Hope' and answer the following question.


Compare the way the Saints and Strangers describe the events of the voyage to the way the author describes them. In your response, use information from the article that supports your answer. Write your answer on your answer document.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_023.xml

View scoring information

 
 (29) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the poem 'At The Library' and answer the following question.


Explain how the speaker in "At the Library" feels about reading. In your response, use details and examples from the poem that support your explanation. Write your answer on your answer document.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_024.xml

View scoring information

 
 (30) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read this passage from 'The Coastwatcher', a novel that takes place during World War II when the United States was at war with Germany. Then answer the following.


Explain how the setting affects the mood of the passage. In your response, use details from the passage that help explain how the setting affects the mood of the passage. Write your answer on the lines below.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_025.xml

View scoring information

 
 (31) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read this passage from 'The Coastwatcher', a novel that takes place during World War II when the United States was at war with Germany. Then answer the following.


Explain how the author makes Hugh and his mother seem like real people. In your response, use details from the passage that show how Hugh and his mother seem like real people. Write your response on the lines below.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_026.xml

View scoring information

 
 (32) Brief Constructed Response Sample
Read the play 'The Weeping Willow Wedding Day'. Then answer the following.


Explain a message about life that this play most helps a reader understand. In your response, use details from the play that help support your explanation. Write your response on the lines below.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_ela_6_061.xml

View scoring information