San Bernardino City Unified School District
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English / Language Arts

What is Covered
The English / Language Arts part of the CAHSEE addresses State content standards through tenth grade. In reading, this covers vocabulary, comprehension, and analysis of information and literary texts. In writing, this covers writing strategies, applications, and the conventions of standard English (grammar, spelling, and punctuation).

Sample Questions
The following article describes some of the many positive features of the state of California. Read the article and answer questions 1-3. The language arts content standard for each test item are listed above each question. Answers are at the bottom of the page.

"You do not have to travel to many other states to realize that California is a world unto itself. This is so widely recognized throughout the world that the state may as well be its own country. The Golden State is complete in itself, with a landscape ranging from desert to mountains to meadow to coastline. Snow-capped mountains rise up majestically before the ocean and golden deserts stretch over vast plains. Fragrant, fruit-scented breezes waft through valleys full of orange groves, apple orchards, and vineyards. Pacific Coast Highway, also known as Highway 1, charts a sometimes winding course, edging the rugged, sea-worn cliffs, curving through the mountains, and sailing by smooth beaches, past the white-capped waves of wild surf and glassy blue waters of the bays. Pastoral scenes of cows grazing in pastures contrast with urban views of skyscrapers and city lights.

"California's population is as diverse as its geography, including people from every race and ethnic background. This diversity intensifies the beauty of the state. Music, art, and dance from every country is widely performed in towns and cities throughout the state. Dragons lead parades for the Chinese and Vietnamese New Year celebrations, the music of guitars enlivens Cinco De Mayo festivals, and drumbeats quicken the heartbeat at Brazilian Samba and African dance performances in the parks. Music from summer jazz festivals drift over the communities while symphonies tune up for Bach festivals in the winter. All of these traditions and arts weave together to create an atmosphere of incredible intercultural beauty and richness.

"The state's wealth is only increased by its eccentricities and its magic. In a small town north of San Francisco, there is a ranch populated with horses no bigger than large dogs. In the coastal city of Santa Cruz, a favorite tourist attraction is the Mystery Spot, a place where the rules of gravity don't seem to apply and objects actually roll uphill. The Monterey Bay region hosts hordes of regal black and orange Monarch butterflies during their annual migration. Swallows return yearly to San Juan Capistrano, perhaps because, like anyone who has traveled to California, they cannot bear to leave the Golden State forever."

Reading Comprehension
1. What does the word eccentricities mean in the following sentence? "The state's wealth is only increased by its eccentricities and its magic."
a. unusual characteristics
b. large population
c. diverse climate
d. famous beauty
Literary and Response Analysis
2. Which of the following lines from the article best supports its theme?
a. "Fragrant, fruit-scented breezes waft through valleys full of orange groves."
b. "The state's wealth is only increased by its eccentricities and its magic."
c. "You don't have to travel to many other states to realize that California is a world unto itself."
d. "California's population is as diverse as its geography."
Word Analysis, Fluency, and Systematic Vocabulary Development
3. In question 2, which of the following strategies does the author use most frequently to describe California?
a. imagery
b. statistics
c. expert opinion
d. historical fact

Answers

  1. a. unusual characteristics
  2. c. "You don't have to travel to many other states to realize that California is a world unto itself."
  3. a. imagery


San Bernardino City Unified School District, 777 North F Street, San Bernardino, CA 92410, (909) 381-1100
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