Primary Exam Tips: Conquering the Comprehension Cloze
Many students find it difficult to score beyond 10 marks in this section and it is often the one section that prevents students from getting full marks in Paper 2.
However, there are 4 simple steps that you can take to make this seemingly impossible task a lot easier to manage.
Step 1: Read the entire passage once without attempting to fill in any words
Have the discipline to read through the entire passage first. This will give you a good overview of the story presented to you. Understanding the setting of the story, as well as the type of characters involved, will help you in figuring out the best words with the correct tone to use for the blanks.
Step 2: Find keywords that are linked to the blank
When you come to a blank, find keywords that you think are connected to the blank, underline them, and draw arrows to connect them to the blank. These keywords will give you the context to think of the best word (and the correct tense) for the blank.
Quick tip: The keywords that you need might not always be in the same sentence where the blank is. Sometimes, it may be in the sentence before or after the blank. And sometimes, you may even find keywords in a different paragraph altogether! That’s why you should always draw arrows to link the keywords to the blank.
Step 3: Think of the most suitable word
Now that you have found some keywords for the blank, think of a word that matches the context as perfectly as possible.
If we use the same example above, based on the keywords found, which of the following words will you choose?
Step 4: Check through once (at least)
Once you have filled in all the blanks, go through the entire passage slowly and carefully from the beginning. Look at all the keywords that you have found for the blanks and think whether those really the best keywords for the blank and are your words used concise enough.
As you are reading the passage again, you might come across better keywords that will help define your answer for the blanks. When this happens, repeat Step 2 and change your answer with a better one!
That’s it! Mission Impossible accomplished!
If you are facing problems with the Comprehension OE section as well, you may wish to check out this article on Knowing The 8 Question Types for some help! You may also find out more about our English tuition for primary school students here.
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