4 Week 4

AS Language Programme

Weekly exercises

Word of the week: indoctrination

the process of teaching a person or group to accept a set of beliefs uncritically.
Quote of the week: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” -Nelson Mandela
Te reo Word of the week: ia rā– every day Fact of the week: The hashtag symbol is actually called an Octothorpe
Lesson Aims: to apply spelling and grammatical skills to a past paper Success Criteria: to recognise the expectations of the AS language paper
Keywords: Imagery, Representation Homework: To have all work written up in notes and exercise books

1. Spelling


Write out the following paragraph (in full) highlighting the edits that you make. For example, if you have changed a lower case letter to a capital letter, highlight that capital letter.

Edit the Piece

Directions: Read the passage below. Then answer questions about errors in the passage.
“To be, or not to be…that is the 1) question” This 2) wellknown utterance has been the source of both mystery and wonderment for students around the world since the turn of the 16th century—arguably the zenith of Shakespeare’s creative output. However, the mere ubiquity of this phrase fails to answer some basic questions about 3) it’s rather context. Where did it come 4) from what does it mean? The 5) first of these questions (where does it come from?) can be answered fairly easily: from Shakespeare’s famous play Hamlet. 6) As for the last of the two questions, a complete answer would require a more 7) deep 8) look at
Shakespearean culture and nuance.
A. question?”
B. question”?
C. question.”
D. question”.
E. question,”
F. Correct as is
A. well known
B. well-known
C. widely-known
D. Correct as is
A. it is
B. its
C. a
D. the
E. Correct as is
A. from? What
B. from or what
C. from, what
D. from? And what
A. first of these questions
B. first interrogative
C. primary
D. first one
E. Correct as is
A. As for the former question,
B. As for the latter question,
C. As for the second one of the two,
D. Correct as is
A. in-depth
B. deeper
C. extended
D. serious
A. conversation on
B. investigation of
C. thought about
D. talk about



  1. You are to write out the spelling words below into your English Language notes in preparation for a quiz on Friday. You may wish to add them to your ongoing work so as to keep a running record of words that can be used as a vocab expansion, or in a separate file / book.
  2. You will be tested on these throughout the year at various intervals. For example week 8 test will consist of all words studied thus far.
  3. You will need to find dictionary definitions for all of the below words, and hand write them into your AS Language book. NB: Mostly the google definition (eg typing in ‘necessary definition’) can be wonderful, but not always.
  4. For each word you will also need to put it into a sentence. That sentence must be grammatically correct and contain the word, as it is written below (ie no derivations) and should demonstrate that you understand what that word means. For example ‘I told Louise it was not necessary for her to come along, I knew she had other things to do.’


consistency bipartisan acrimonious diabolical idiosyncratic
futile duplicity dogma fracas ethereal
erudite grandiose innocuous embellish eclectic
elusive inane insurmountable perpetuate magnanimous

How to remember spelling words?

  1. Have the words on one page, and your practice on a separate page. Look at the word quickly and then cover it, then try to write it out – then check.
  2. Try to remember the words in order.
  3. Think up a little rhyme or tune (if you are that way inclined) to remember spelling. One of the main ones I use is the spelling of onomatopoeia where each letter fits with the tune ‘Old Mac Donald’.
  4. Try to use the word more in your day to day.
  5. Test yourself on the Monday (when you first get it), Tuesday, and then Thursday. Science says that gap on Wednesday will provide the most help.

2. Grammar

Possessive Pronouns

Possessive pronouns can also show ownership just like nouns.

* This is my car.
* Is that your car?

1. Use the correct form of the personal possessive pronouns and do not use an apostrophe to indicate possessions:

my mine
your yours
his hers
its* ours
theirs whose

* The Commission on Election failed to publish its findings.

The word “its” is not a contraction between the words it and is.
The word is used to convey the idea that the Commission on Election owns the findings.
We can says then that its is a possessive pronoun.

* It’s a lovely guitar.

The word “it’s” in the sentence is a constriction of the words ‘it’ and ‘is’. Moreover, there is no idea of ownership being expressed.
Thus, it’s is not a possessive pronoun.

2. It is necessary to use the apostrophe and s to show the possessive forms of indefinite pronoun others, the apostrophe is added at the end of s without adding an additional s.

anyone’s job someone’s key
everybody’s car each one’s racquet
one’s relative other’s affairs (singular other)
another’s book others’ affairs (plural other)

A pronoun must agree with its antecedent as to person, number, and gender.

Classification of Gender (according to distinctions in sex)

A. Masculine gender- he, him, father, son
B. Feminine gender- she, her, daughter, sister
C. Common gender- child, adult, cousin, neighbour
D. Neuter gender- computer, desk, mirror, bus

4. When the pronouns all, any, some, and none refer to a number, they are generally regarded as plural. When they refer to quantity or to a mass, they are regarded as singular.

* All were waiting their turn. (All is plural)
* There is no bread in the box. All of it has been eaten. (All is singular)

A compound antecedent can be two antecedents connected by and.

The coach and the players agreed on their game plan. (The pronoun “their” to a compound antecedent made up of the words coach and the players.)

5. In a compound antecedent, if both antecedents are singular and refer to different persons or things, the compound antecedent is considered to the plural.
This also true if at least one of the antecedents is plural. The pronoun that refers to the compound antecedent must also be plural.

* Francis and his father postponed their trip.

6. In the compound antecedent, if both antecedents making up the compound antecedent are singular and refer to the same person or thing, the compound antecedent is considered
to be singular. The pronoun that refers to the compound antecedent must also be singular.

* The judge and executioner abhor his duties. (If the judge is also the executioner then the compound antecedent is considered to be singular. In this case, the pronoun his agrees
with its antecedent in number.)

7. Collective noun is singular when they designate a group acting as a unit. They are plural when the members that make up the group are acting independently. The pronoun
must then agree with its antecedent as to number.

Collective noun names a group of individual persons or things. It can take a singular form, although it is made up of two or more persons or things, if the collective noun acts
as a unit.

audience class
crowd family
jury team

Exercise: Pronouns and Antecedents

1. The class was divided in (its, their) opinion of the new president of the university.
2. (Who, Whom) is speaking please?
3. She and (I, me) volunteered to go to Bora Bora Beach to see the white sand.
4. It was (they, them) who persuaded us to see a fortune teller.
5. They wanted (us, we) girls to prepare the food for the party.
6. He is willing to hire (whoever, whomever) comes first.
7. That was (she, her) calling in the telephone.
8. Don’t mind (my, me) complaining.
9. (It’s, its) a fact; Paula is shorter than Tinting and (I, me).
10. Everyone must keep (himself, themselves) busy.


3. Speed Writing


Task: In your English book you need to write out the following sentence as quickly as you can in one minute. The aim of this exercise is to write as fast as you can, but also as legibly as you can. It doesn’t have to be your neatest writing, but it should be close.


Grumpy wizards make a toxic brew for the jovial queen.

Make a note of your speed, and rate your legibility out of 5. We will continue to develop this over the term.

4. Speed Reading

Stopping on Key Words

You may have been taught and continue to believe that you must read every word. Anything less is “cheating.” This belief stems from your elementary school teachers who taught you, and rightfully so, that you must read every word. Back then you were learning how to read; you needed to process every word because you were learning what words looked like and what they meant. At that time you didn’t have enough experience to make educated guesses about their meaning from contextual clues. If you haven’t had any reading training since elementary school, reading every word may still be your practice.

Also, you were left with the impression that if you read every word, you would surely understand its meaning. If you read every word now, does that guarantee comprehension? No. Is it a good use of your time? Definitely not. Thankfully as an adult, you now have a solid foundation of background knowledge of words and their meanings that will enable you to use and benefit from the faster reading strategies.

The method of stopping your eyes on key words is a powerful reading strategy that can immediately increase your reading speed. It also reduces subvocalization. Key words are generally the bigger, more important words in a sentence. They are usually longer than three letters in length and carry the meaning of the sentence. For example, most people read the following eleven-word sentence word-for-word:


The task is defined by a series of steps and elements.


By looking for and stopping your eyes only on the key words, you can still understand the sentence while saving time. Read just the five underlined key words below.


The task is defined by a series of steps and elements.

Now look at the six words that are not underlined. How many times have you seen those in your lifetime? Do you see how the underlined words naturally carry the most meaning of the sentence? Think about what would happen to your reading if you could read, or stop your eyes on, five words out of eleven while still understanding what you read. The result? At least a doubling of your reading speed.

Reading the big, or key, words does not mean you are skipping words. What you are doing is focusing your eyes in one glance/eye stop. In effect, you are expanding your eye span. This is why comprehension is possible.

When you start to experiment with this technique, know that there are no right or wrong key words. If you have too many, you will waste your time and you will tend to subvocalize more. If you read too few, you may not understand what you read.

Experiment with Key Words

Take a pen or pencil and quickly underline the bigger words in the paragraph below. Go for length, not meaning. Do not be surprised if you end up underlining every other word, or maybe even a few in a row. If your eyes stop on a word and you aren’t sure whether it is a key word or not, underline it anyway. Just do it quickly.

Homeopathy is a system of medicine that is based on the principle that “like cures like.” That is, if a substance can cause symptoms in a healthy person, then it can stimulate self-healing of similar symptoms in a sick person. The truth of this principle has been verified experimentally and clinically for the last 200 years. The exact mechanism by which homeopathy works is unknown, but 200 years of clinical experience along with research have confirmed homeopathy’s effectiveness.

When you have finished, reread the paragraph, stopping your eyes only on the words you underlined. See if you need to make any changes that would help you better understand the passage. Know that you may naturally stop your eyes on the first word of a sentence, no matter its length or importance. This is because it is an important starting point for the brain and an eye stop worth keeping.

The sample paragraph about homeopathy contains seventy-eight words, with about forty-five as key words. Count your underlines and see if you are close to this number. As you become more skilled at locating key words, you will notice that you become more proficient at finding not only the longer words but also the ones that have the most meaning. You still may stop your eyes on a word like “if,” “and,” “but,” or “that,” but they are not key words. Remember, as long as you are actively seeking out the bigger, more important words, you will read faster while maintaining comprehension.

Exercise: Eye Swing

You can train your eyes to pick up key words. Learning to “swing” your eyes helps them become more familiar with the efficient eye movements necessary for faster reading. With a little practice, you develop a smooth reading rhythm.

Begin reading by stopping your eyes on the thick line at the beginning of the first line. Then jump your eyes over the dots to the next thick line. Continue to the end of the paragraph. Do not move your head: Let your eyes do the moving. Try this exercise several times as quickly and as accurately as you can. You can return to this exercise whenever you feel it is necessary.

Exercise: Discipline Your Eyes

This exercise was originally published in 1956 in Reading Improvement for Adults by Paul Leedy (McGraw-Hill), and to this day is still used effectively in seminars. It is a simple yet incredibly powerful drill for building efficient eye movements.

  1. On a separate piece of paper, make a date and time chart like this one.
    Date Time
  2. Put today’s date under the date column.
  3. With a clock with a second hand next to you or a stopwatch, time how long it takes to read the exercise. It may take you as long as two minutes or as little as thirty seconds.
    1. Read across the lines, not down.
    2. Read for comprehension.

Now write your total time in minutes and seconds next to today’s date under the time column.


At this point, you have read and understood what the exercise described. You now have something extremely valuable you did not have a minute ago. Can you guess what it is? What is one of the most valuable pieces of information you can have as a reader? Background knowledge! Use this knowledge to really help you push yourself on this exercise.

Now read this exercise again, timing yourself. But this time read for speed, not comprehension. Then track your score on your time chart. On your mark, get set, go!

When you read it the second time, you may have felt a reading rhythm of three stops and three jumps across the line. Because your eye muscles were stretched out from the first time you did the exercise, the words flowed better to your eyes the second time. If you can identify the intended rhythm of this exercise, then it is easier to recreate it with your own material.

Your timing goal of the exercise is between fifteen and forty seconds. If you can consistently read this within this time frame, you are well on your way to building efficient eye movements. Now that you are familiar with both the Eye Swing and Discipline Your Eyes, which works best for you?

Read this piece for speed. Don’t worry about the line numbers, they will come in later. Time yourself for just one minute and go for it!

Speed Reading Test

People have been concerned with systematically increasing

reading speeds since 1925. This is when the very first for-

mal Speed Reading course was conducted at Syracuse Uni-

versity in the United States. But at many times in writing

5 history, literate people have considered how to speed up

the reading process. For example, in the mid-1600s, a man

named Antonio di Marco Magliabechi was reportedly able

to read and comprehend and memorize entire volumes at a

rapid rate. But while 1925 appears to be the first formal

10 presentation of a Speed Reading course, much research in

the area was being conducted before that date.

It was a French ophthalmologist, Emile Javal, who un-

knowingly laid the foundations of Speed Reading with his

eye-movement experiments in 1878. Javal discovered that

15 the eyes move in a series of jumps (saccades) and pauses

(fixations), stopping on average three or four times, while

reading a line of text. It is only during those fixations,

when the eyes are steady, that word recognition can occur.

Prior to Javal’s work, it had been believed that the eyes

20 would stop on each letter, or at least each word, while read-


His discovery was foundational because it demonstrated

that our field of focus (number of characters that the eyes

can recognize per glance) is wider than previously imag-

25 ined. If our eyes can fixate on a number of words at a time

“naturally,” then perhaps we are capable of reading faster

than commonly believed. It did not take people long to

challenge the knowledge of the day and ask how reading

rates could be improved upon. As early as 1894, articles

30 were being published in magazines, such as The Educa-

tional Review, about the advantages and methods of Speed


Coupled with the increased interest and desire to im-

prove reading speeds was the mass public education of the

35 late 19th and early 20th centuries. At that time, literacy

rates were rapidly increasing in the United States, which in

turn prompted more people to read — for business, learn-

ing, and pleasure. These increases not only generated a

great demand for printed materials, but also prompted re-

40 search interest in the area of text legibility.

Legibility, for conventional print, denotes how physical

characteristics of written text affect factors such as visual fa-

tigue, reading speed, and comprehension. While publishers

were interested in the quality and appearance aspects of

45 printed materials, reading researches focused on the rela-

tionship between physical characteristics of text and its effect

on the outcome, visual fatigue, speed, and comprehension.

The concept of Speed Reading at that time focused very little

on visual or perceptual elements, but focused more on sheer

50 effort on the reader’s part in order to improve.

Further advancements in Speed Reading were made by

an unlikely group, the United States Air Force. Their discov-

eries represent the first large-scale usage and acceptance of

Speed Reading as a phenomenon, and stemmed from the

55 life-and-death experiences of their pilots. Tacticians noticed

that some pilots had difficulty identifying aircraft from long

distances. The goal of the tacticians and the United States

Air Force was to improve the visual acuity of their pilots.

The psychologists and educational specialists working

60 on the visual acuity question devised what was later to be-

come the icon of early Speed Reading courses, the tachisto-

scope. The tachistoscope is a machine designed to flash

images at varying rates on a screen. The experiment started

with large pictures of aircraft being displayed for partici-

65 pants. The images were gradually reduced in size and the

flashing rate was increased. They found that, with training,

an average person could identify minute images of differ-

ent planes when flashed on the screen for only one-five-

hundredth of a second.

70     The results had obvious implications for reading, and

thus began the research into the art of reading improve-

ment, using the tachistoscope. Using the same methodol-

ogy as in the aircraft example, the Air Force soon

discovered that they could flash four words simultaneously

75 on the screen at rates of one-five-hundredth of a second,

with full recognition by the reader.

This training demonstrated clearly that, with some

work, reading speeds could be increased. Not only could

they be increased but the improvements were made by im-

80 proving visual processing. Therefore, the next step was to

train eye movements by means of a variety of pacing tech-

niques in an attempt to improve reading.

The reading courses that followed used the tachisto-

scope to increase reading speeds, and discovered that read-

ers were able to increase their speeds from 200 to 400

words per minute using the machine. The drawback to the

tachistoscope was that post-course timings showed that,

without the machine, speed increases rapidly diminished.

Following the tachistoscope discoveries, Harvard Uni-

90 versity Business School produced the first film-aided

course, designed to widen the reader’s field of focus in

order to increase reading speed. Again, the focus was on vi-

sual processing as a means of improvement. Using ma-

chines to increase people’s reading speeds was the trend of

95 the 1940s. While it had been clearly established that read-

ing speed increases of 100% were possible and had been at-

tained, lasting results had yet to be demonstrated.

It was not until the late 1950s that a portable, reliable, and

“handy” device would be discovered as a tool to promote

100 reading speed increases. The researcher this time was a mild-

mannered school-teacher with a passion for underachievers

and reading, named Evelyn Wood. Not only did she revolu-

tionize the area of Speed Reading, but she committed her life

to the advancement of reading and learning development.

105     Her revolutionary discovery came about somewhat by

accident. She had been committed to understanding why

some people were natural speed readers, and was trying to

force herself to read very quickly. While brushing off the

pages of the book she had thrown down in despair, she dis-

110 covered, quite accidentally, that the sweeping motion of

her hand across the page caught the attention of her eyes,

and helped them move more smoothly across the page.

That was the day she discovered the hand as a pacer, and

called it the Wood Method.

115     Not only did Mrs. Wood use her hand-pacing method,

But she combined it with all of the other knowledge she

had discovered from her research about reading and learn-

ing, and she introduced a revolutionary new method of

learning, called Reading Dynamics, in 1958.

120     It made its debut in “Speech 21” at the University of Utah.

It was so dramatically effective that students and faculty

anxiously stood in line for hours waiting for an open desk.

Mrs. Wood introduced Reading Dynamics to the pub-

lic in 1959, having piloted the program at the University

125 of Utah for a year. She moved to Washington, D.C. and

opened the first Evelyn Wood Reading Dynamics Insti-

tute. Soon, her institutes were all over the world. Evelyn

Wood’s name became synonymous with Speed Reading.

She sold the business in 1967, but continued to teach.

130 Mrs. Wood died in 1995 at the age of 86.

In viewing the various trends of the history of speed

reading, it stands out quite clearly that one method used

consistently throughout is the training of the eyes to move

more effectively. Whether it is a tachistoscope, a film-aided

135 approach, or the hand as a natural pacer, this element re-

mains today to help increase a reader’s speed.

  1. Now count the number of lines you have just read using the numbers in the margin to

guide you. If you went back to the beginning, add those lines onto the total number of

lines in the article.


  1. Multiply the number of lines you read by 9 (the average number of words per line of

this reading).


Number of lines read____X 9 words per line = Words per Min

Important note: You may be uncomfortable with your comprehension.


  1. Track your Time Trial score: Go to your Personal Progress chart

5. Summary


In a paragraph of around 100 words, summarise the results of the investigations into schoolbooks described in the text.

Schoolbooks and the female stereotype

Illustrations and stories in United States primary school textbooks tend to convince young girls that they should be ‘passive’ and ‘dependent’ creatures who need aspire only to lives of service to their future husbands and children, a conference of educators was told here yesterday.

Speaking at the first national conference on schools and sex role stereotypes, a University of California professor said a study of the 100 most widely used elementary text-books demonstrated that girls are constantly depicted as dependent on and subservient to boys.

Louise White, of the U.S. Office of Education, told the conference that the female stereotype presented to elementary school children was so overwhelming that by the time most girls reached fourth grade they believed they had only four occupations open to them – nurse, secretary, teacher, or mother.

The director of the elementary school textbook study, Lenore Weitzman, of the University of California, said that texts in spelling, reading, mathematics, science, and social studies were examined.

Most stories and illustrations tended to centre on boys rather than girls, and those boys tended to demonstrate qualities of strength, intelligence, love of adventure, independence, and courage.

Girls, however, were depicted in passive roles. Usually they were inside a house, and often they were helping with housework or playing with dolls.

When boys and girls appeared together in a text, she said, the girls were either watching the boys do something or they were helping the boys.

Adult men appearing in elementary school texts were depicted in various jobs – astronaut, truck driver, policeman, cowboy, scientist, banker – in addition to the role of father.

But the overwhelming picture of women that emerged from the elementary texts was that of mother and housewife. Even at that, said Professor Weitzman, the picture was one of a woman performing simple but time-consuming chores. It failed completely to reflect the complexities facing a modern housewife.

A study was done by an affiliate of the Central New Jersey National Organisation for women on 34 books published by 14 major publishing companies and involving 2,760 stories for elementary school children.
According to the findings the composite housewife or mother was a ‘limited, colourless, mindless creature…’ Not only does she wash, cook, clean, nurse, and find mittens: these chores constitute her only happiness.

‘In illustration, she frequently appears in the servant’s posture, body slightly bent forward, hands clasped, eyes riveted on the master of the house or the children.’

In contrast, the typical father found in the study was ‘the “good guy” in the family. He’s where the fun is.

He builds things with his children and takes them hunting, fishing and up in planes. He solves the problems.’

The effect of this on young girls, Professor Weitzman said, is to make them think their role is to serve others. They think they should be attractive so that they can please others and although they generally have better academic records than boys by the time they reach adolescence, they value academic and scholastic excellence less than boys do.

Summary Writing

  1. Firstly, summary writing is based on material that has already been written. The summary writer must decide what to include, what to eliminate, how to reword or reorganise information, and how to ensure that the summary is true to the original meaning.
  2. Two types of thinking are crucial to summarising. The first is a selection process: judgments made about what text information should be included or rejected. The second is a reduction process: ideas must be condensed by substituting general ideas for lower level and more detailed ones.
  3. Summary writing is about finding what is important in a text. The aim firstly is to work out to whom is the information important? The key is to acknowledge what is important to the author. This means that you need to look for the things that the author seems to be emphasising. Clues on this is to look at the following: introductory sentences, topic sentences, summary statements, underlinings, italics, pointer phrases, repetitions etc. See if you can spot these, and jot them down underneath your writing.
  4. Sometimes two summaries are better than one. It can be easier to get things clear in your mind first, before trying to write a summary for someone else. The skill of summary writing is key to a number of industries, particularly law, commerce, health and media. You should make sure you understand the text before trying to summarise it for others. The best idea is to make your own notes and then write the summary.


Ko te reo te tuakiri | Language is my identity.  
Ko te reo tōku ahurei | Language is my uniqueness.
Ko te reo te ora. | Language is life.            


AS English Language Copyright © 2020 by christopherreed. All Rights Reserved.

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