Grade 3 ELA Study Guide - Seven Hills Charter Public School

Grades 4 and 5 ELA Study Guide
Key Terms
Genre- a particular category or type of literature (fiction, nonfiction, drama, etc.)
Fiction- literature that is not necessarily based on fact, stories based on
imagination (made up stories)
Nonfiction-literature that is based on facts, provides information
o Article- a piece of writing usually nonfiction on a particular topic that
forms an independent part of a publication (as a magazine or newspaper)
Poetry/Poem- literature written in metrical form /a piece of literature chosen and
arranged to create a certain emotional response through meaning, sound, and
rhythm, usually written in stanza form
o Stanza- a division of a poem consisting of a series of lines arranged
together in a usually repeating pattern of rhythm and rhyme
Biography- a written account of someone else’s life (autobiography- a written
account of your own life)
Fable- a short fictitious story; especially one intended to teach a lesson and in
which animals speak and act like human beings
Folktale- a story made up and passed down from one generation to another
(grandparents tell their children, and the children tell their own children, etc.)
Fairy Tale- A story written for, or told to, children that includes elements of
magic and magical folk such as fairies, elves, or goblins
Drama- a written work that tells a story through action and speech and is meant to
be acted on a stage (a play), includes stage directions
o Stage Directions- tell how the set should look and how and where the
actors should move on the stage, in a play these directions are usually
placed inside parentheses () and printed in italic type
Parts of Speech- the basic types of words that the English language has (verb, noun,
pronoun, adjective, adverb, preposition, conjunction, interjection)
Noun- name of a person/animal, place, thing, or idea
Proper Noun- name of a particular person/animal, place, thing, or idea; begins
with a capital letter (city is a common noun, but Worcester is a proper noun)
Pronoun- a word that replaces a noun or another pronoun (he, she, it, etc.)
Verb- a word that shows action or state of being (ran)
Adverb- a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or another adverb (quickly,
adverbs often ends in –ly)
Adjective- a word that describes a noun (happy)
Preposition- a word or group of words that combines with a noun or pronoun to
form a phrase that usually acts as an adverb, adjective, or noun ( “with” is a
preposition in this phrase “the house with the red door" )
Conjunction- a word or expression that joins together sentences, clauses, phrases,
or words (“and” is a conjunction in this sentence: I ate the pizza and the pasta.)
Interjection- a word added to a sentence to convey emotion, (“ouch” and “oh no”
are interjections in the following sentences: Ouch, that hurt! Oh no, I forgot that
the test was today. )
Contraction- a shortened form of two words created be replacing omitted (left out) letters
with an apostrophe (‘) (can’t = can not)
Compound Word- two words put together to make one word (meatball, springtime)
Antonyms- words that have opposite meanings (hot/cold)
Synonyms- words that have similar (about the same) meanings (happy/glad)
Figure of Speech- a form of expression (as a simile or metaphor) that uses words other
than in a plain or literal way, often used to make writing more interesting or entertaining
Simile- a figure of speech in which different things are compared by the use of the word
like or as (eyes like stars)
Metaphor- a figure of speech that shows how two things that are not alike in most ways
are similar in one important way, metaphors usually state that something is something
else (He is a tiger when he is angry.)
Sentence- a group of words that expresses a statement, a question, a command, a wish, or
an exclamation (beginning with a capital letter and ending with a period, question mark,
or exclamation point)
Paragraph- a group of sentences usually dealing with a single thought or idea (The first
sentence of each paragraph is usually indented (set in from the margin).)
Story Elements- the important pieces that make up a story (character, setting, plot, etc.)
Character- the people, animals, or imaginary things (monsters, talking shoes, etc.)
in a made up story
Plot- the “happenings” in a story, the main story or storyline
Setting- when and where the story takes place
Problem/Conflict- an “issue” in the story that needs to be solved, the problems are
an important part of the story because they get the story going
Solution- how the problem in the story is solved/worked out
Lesson- what the story is trying to teach the readers about
Narrator- person who tells a story
Opinion- a judgment about a person or thing not based on facts, how someone feels about
something (Chocolate ice cream is the best!)
Fact- a piece of information about something presented as true and accurate (There are
seven days in a week.)
Purpose- why an author chooses to write something, or to write something in a certain
Key Concepts
Genre-fiction, non fiction, biography, poetry, fables, folktales, fairytales, etc.
 Student should be able to determine what genre a passage is and why it is this
type of genre
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to genre:
o “What makes the article nonfiction?”
o “Which of the following makes “The Photograph” a poem?”
o “How does the reader know this article is nonfiction?”
o “Which of the following shows that “The Baker’s Neighbor” is a play?”
Story Elements-characters, setting, plot, problem/conflict, solution, theme, lesson, etc.
 Students should be able to identify the story elements in a passage.
 Here is a sample question relating to story elements:
o “…It was called the Farmers’ Market, a great square of a place with a roof
over part of it and no walls to speak of. There early every morning the
farmers arrived from all over the surrounding countryside, with trucks full
of tomatoes, corn, cabbages, potatoes, eggs, chickens, hams, food for the
city. One part of it was reserved for the fisherman who brought crabs and
oysters and bass and flounders. It was a fine place, noisy and full of
The details in paragraph 1 are MOSTLY used to:
A. describe a setting
B. introduce a character
C. present the problem
D. create suspense
Parts of Speech-noun (proper/common), verb, adjective, adverb
 Students should be able to identify parts of speech of words from the passages.
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to parts of speech:
o “Which of the following words in the sentence is a verb?”
o “What part of speech is the word eagerly as it is used in the sentence?”
o “What part of speech are the words small and white?”
Multiple Meaning Words-some words have more than one meaning
 Students should be able to determine the meaning of a word based on how it is
used in a passage.
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to multiple meaning words:
 “Which meaning of the word set is used in paragraph1?”
 “Which meaning of the word trace is used in the sentence
General Grammar-types of words: antonyms, synonyms, contractions, compound words
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to grammar:
 “Which of the following words could replace the word fractures?”
 “Which word could best be used in place of the word despised?”
 “Read the words from the article in the box below:”
Which of the following statements is true about the words in the box?
A. They are adjectives.
B. They are contractions.
C. They are proper nouns.
D. They are compound words
Vocabulary-Word Meanings
 Students should be able to determine the meaning of a word based on how it is
used in context.
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to vocabulary:
 “Based on the sentence, what is the meaning of the word unique?”
“In lines 139-140, Anne refers to “the valley of woe.” What does the
word woe mean?”
“What does the use of the word wailed tell readers about the younger
“Which word in the sentence helps the reader understand the word
“In stanza 6 of “Debts,” what does the word feuding mean?”
Comparisons (Similes and Metaphors)
 Students should be able to identify similes and metaphors and what they mean
and why they are used.
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to comparisons:
o “Why does the author most likely use the simile, or comparison, in the
o “Which of the following lines from the poem is an example of a
o “Read the lines from “First Rain” in the box below:
Like the tapping of a stranger at
the door of a dream.
What is the effect of comparing the rain to a stranger at the door?”
Fact versus Opinion
 Students should be able to distinguish facts from opinions.
 Here is a question relating to opinion:
 “Which of the following phrases is an opinion from the article?’
Analyzing/Interpreting Poetry
 Students should be able to read poems and understand their meaning.
 Here is an example of a question relating to poetry:
o “Read line 2 from the poem in the box below:
And what can be the use of
him is more than I can see.
What does this line mean?”
Making an Inference/Determining the meaning of non-literal sayings
 Students should be able to “arrive at a conclusion” based on the
information they have read in a passage.
 Students should be able to determine the meaning of non-literal saying
based on other information read in a passage.
 Here are a few examples of questions relating to making an inference
and/or determining the meaning of non-literal sayings:
 “What does Vera mean when she says that it is “everyone for
 “In line 27, what does “Her eyes dance” mean?”
“Why does the author repeat the word shoot three times in step 8?”
“In paragraph 10, what does the author MOST LIKELY mean
when he says, “Almost nothing is our house was thrown away”?”
General Test Taking Strategies for Multiple Choice Questions
Read the question twice and underline/highlight any key information.
Refer back to the passages to help you answer questions (look for clues in the
Read all the possible answer choices before choosing your answer.
Some questions have more than one correct answer but ask you to identify the one
that is “BEST” or “MOST LIKLEY” Look for discrete differences between
Use process of elimination-cross out the answers you know are wrong
Don’t leave any blank
Most of the time, you will find answers in the passage in the same order the
questions are asked, (first questions have answers at the beginning of the passage
and answers to the last questions are usually found at the end of the passage)
Read all the information on the page including introductory information and
captions (they often have helpful information in them)