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THEA Writing Practice Questions

Read the passage below, written in the style of a student essay. Then answer the questions that follow.

As you may know September is Teacher Appreciation Month at Jackson High school. This is an opportunity for all of us students to show our teachers how grateful we are for all they do for us throughout the year. There are a few different ways that you can show your appreciation this September. One great way to thank a favorite teacher is by giving him or her a rose. The Student Council will be organizing a program in which for only $5 you can send a rose to the teacher or teachers of your choice. These flowers will be accompanied by a hand-written note which you can tell your favorite teacher how much they mean to you. Another way to celebrate Teacher Appreciation Month is by donating some money to the Lounge Rehabilitation fund. The teachers at Jackson High have been putting up with an under-equipped and uncomfortable lounge for many years, so many of our students have decided too raise money to improve the room. We would like to raise enough money to install a new vending machine and buy some new couches for relaxing. Donations in any amount. If you cannot participate in either of these programs during Teacher Appreciation Month, you can still show your sport for our teachers by being on your best behavior and trying to improve your academic performance, whatever class you are in. In fact this is the best way to show your teachers that you appreciate what they do!            

1. How can the first sentence be improved?

  1. teacher appreciation does not need to be capitalized
  2. the name of the high school does not need to be given
  3. a comma should be placed after know.
  4. the author should start by saying 'Hi'

2. Which of the following is the correct form?

  1. jackson high school
  2. Jackson high school
  3. Jackson High school
  4. Jackson High School

3. What is wrong with the first sentence of the second paragraph?

  1. Them should be used instead of him or her.
  2. The word to is not necessary.
  3. This is not an appropriate first sentence for this paragraph.
  4. There is nothing wrong with this sentence.

4. Which word should be placed between note and which in the last sentence of the second paragraph?

  1. at
  2. in
  3. from
  4. during

5. Which word needs to be changed in the second sentence of the third paragraph?

  1. too
  2. many
  3. putting
  4. under-equipped

6. What is wrong with the last sentence in the third paragraph?

  1. it is a fragment
  2. it is a run-on sentence
  3. it contains misspellings
  4. it lacks proper capitalization

7. Which word would be more appropriate than sport in the first sentence of the last paragraph?

  1. activity
  2. technique
  3. support
  4. chap

8. Which grammatical rule is violated by the first sentence of the last paragraph?

  1. infinitives should not be split
  2. participles should not be left hanging
  3. sentences should not end with a preposition
  4. all proper nouns should be capitalized

9. How can the last sentence of this essay be improved?

  1. The word better should be used instead of best.
  2. There should be a comma after fact.
  3. Teachers should be capitalized.
  4. Teachers should have an apostrophe.

10. Is the exclamation mark at the end of the last sentence appropriate?

  1. Yes, because the essay ends with a question.
  2. Yes, in an informal essay like this it is acceptable to end this way.
  3. No, because a formal essay should never contain exclamation points.
  4. No, because exclamation points should only be used in direct quotations.

Answer Key

1. C. This introductory clause needs to be separated with a comma.

2. D. All of the words in a proper title should be capitalized.

3. D. The sentence is grammatically correct as written.

4. B. The word in restores sense to the sentence.

5. A. The word to is correct.

6. A. The sentence does not have a verb.

7. C. The word support would restore sense to the sentence.

8. C. It is considered improper to end a sentence with a preposition.

9. B. An introductory clause usually needs to be separated with a comma.

10. B. Exclamation points can be used more freely in an informal essay.

THEA Test Questions

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