CAHSEE Test Strategies San Fernando High School The Reading Comprehension strand has 18 multiple-choice questions which measure your ability to read and understand informational documents. You will identify main ideas, supporting details, text organization, logic, and author’s purpose. You will be asked to read and understand non-fiction documents such as: Textbooks Instruction manuals Articles Letters First do this… 1. Skim the title and the text. 2. Read the first and last paragraphs or first and last sentences. 3. Scan the questions. Then ask yourself… What can I predict the text is about? What does the text seem to be about? What did you learn about the text by scanning the questions? There are five distinct types of reading comprehension questions on the CAHSEE: Right There! In Other Words… Brain Power What’s the Big Idea? Read All! Question Type Strategy Right There! Example: The question asks, “What is the best way to choose Skim and Scan for a particular a password?” Let’s see…it says fact and look for an answer in right here that the best way to the same words as the text. choose a password is to select something memorable from you past, and that’s one of the answers. Got it! Question Type Strategy In Other Words… Example: The question asks, “What should you do first before choosing a password?” Let’s see…the text says I need to know the type of password required. But I don’t see that in any of the answer choices. Hey! Here’s something: “Read the directions for creating the password and be sure that your password conforms to the specifications required.” That summarizes what the author said, it must be the answer! Skim and scan the text for the idea referred to in the question. The correct answer will paraphrase or summarize what’s in the text — it will be stated in different words. Look at each answer carefully and choose the one that is the closest in meaning. Question Type Strategy Brain Power Example: Let’s see…the question asks, “Which of the four phrases is an example of a simile?” I already know what a simile is, so I should look at each phrase and see which one fits. Just use your brain. No need to go back to the text because it doesn’t define simile for you. Question Type Strategy What’s the Big Idea… Example: Just from looking at the title, “Electric Cars Deserve a Second Chance,” I can see that the main idea must be that people should consider buying electrical cars. Oh, then the author’s purpose must be to persuade the reader to consider electric cars, and the tone is persuasive! Wow! Easy! Look at big idea places: 1. Title 2. 1st Paragraph 3. Last Paragraph Question Type Strategy Read All! Example: How does the speaker’s attitude change No shortcuts on this one! Read throughout the essay? Let’s the whole text, from beginning see…I need to know what she to end. was like in the beginning and compare this to what she is like at the end.