Passage # 1:
During the Colonial period in American history, communication and trade were mostly conducted by ocean-going vessels sailing along the eastern seaboard. As farms and great estates developed inland, the rivers of the East became the main transportation routes for people and goods. The settlement of the West brought the Mississippi River system into the national transportation network, and eventually the steamboat made the Mississippi the foremost inland carrier of all. With the introduction of the steamboat to Mississippi waters by Robert Fulton in1811, transportation time and costs were greatly reduced. As technological improvements increased the speed at which boats could travel, particularly upstream, from one river port to another, operators were able to make a profit and greatly reduce rates at the same time. The steamboat also raised the volume of goods exchanged between the South and the rapidly-growing West Produce grown in the western states was transported quickly down to the levees of new Orleans for shipment overseas or for distribution by coastal vessels to the rest of the South and South west and even to the East. Most of the commodities from abroad were funneled into this booming port for shipment inland.
1. What is the main subject of the passage?
A. The steamboat's contribution to American trade
B. The commercial development of the port of New Orleans
C. The growth of communication in early America
D. he expansion of western trade routes
2. According to the passage, steamboat operators were able to make a profit as well as to reduce shipping rates because of the.
A. low cost of fuel.
B. speed of their steamboats.
C. size of their steamboats .
D. intense competition.
3. According to the passage, what was transported down the Mississippi River to New Orleans?
A. Manufactured goods
B. Agricultural products
C. International commodities
D. Shipbuilding supplies
4. It can be inferred from the passage that all of the following made a strong contribution to the growth of New Orleans as an important trading center EXCEPT
A. the growth of population in the west
B. the success of the steamboat
C. nearby manufacturing facilities
D. its location at the mouth of the Mississippi
5. The passage would most likely be assigned reading for courses in which of the following subjects?
Passage # 2:
What makes it rain? Rain falls from clouds for the same reason anything falls to Earth. The Earth's gravity pulls it. But every cloud IS made of water droplets or ice crystals. Why doesn’t rain or snow fall constantly from all clouds? The droplets or Ice crystals in clouds are exceedingly small. The effect of gravity on them is minute. Air currents move and lift droplets so that the net downward displacement is zero, even though the droplets are in constantly moving.
6. What is the main topic of the passage?
A. The mechanics of rain
B. The climate of North America
C. How gravity affects agriculture
D. Type of clouds
7. Why don't all ice crystals in clouds immediately fall to earth?
A. They are balanced by the pressure of rain droplets.
B. The effect of gravity at high altitude is random.
C. They are kept aloft by air currents.
D. The heat from the sun's raves melts them.
Passage # 3:
A fully grown koala weighs about9 kilograms and its body is at most about 62 centimeters long. Its fur is thick and woolly, its limbs are long, and its toes are strongly clawed. On each front foot the two innermost digits can be opposed to the others like two thumbs, as can t-he innermost digits on each rear foot. It is this articulation, or moveable joint, that makes the koala a good climber. On the ground, to which it normally descends only to move from one tree to another, the koala goes on all four limbs. Most of the time it is in a tree intermittently sleeping and foraging among the leaves by day and at night.
8. The author of the passage indicates that a topic that will be discussed later in the article is the koala's
A. migratory habits
B. tendency to live in trees
C. reproductive system
D. ability to eat eucalyptus leaves
9. According to the passage, koalas are able to climb well because of
A. the structure of their feet
B. the sharpness of their claws
C. the length of their bodies
D. their weight relative to their size
10. The author compares the innermost digits on each of the koala's front feet to human