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Sentence Completions

Link of the Day

Another tale of dedication and accomplishment comes out of the Olympics! Gabby Douglas, a 16-year-old girl from the USA, "made history" in London by winning the women's all-around title--the first African-American to ever do so. She had the highest score on both balance beam and vault, and she was the only American to compete on all four women's events. Dedication to her sport pulled her away from her parents at 14, when she moved from Virginia Beach to Des Moines to work with a world-famous gymnastics coach. Read more here.

8/2 Sentence Completion

Choose the word or set of words that, when inserted in the sentence, best fits the meaning of the sentence as a whole.

The Knowsys Strategy for Sentence Completions is to cover the answer choices before you read the sentences.  If you read the entire sentence carefully, then you will be able to predict an answer for the blank and match your prediction to the correct answer choice.  When you use this method, you will not be distracted by wrong, but promising, answers because you can eliminate all the answers that do not match your prediction.  Be sure to look at all the answer choices, even if one matches immediately.

Exotics and indigenous weeds include some of the most ------- species: their visual impact often eclipses that of nearby plants.

After reading this sentence, you know that you must predict a word to describe “species.”  This word must give us more information than that they are “exotics and indigenous weeds.”  Think about the colon right after “species.”  Colons introduce explanations of the terms that precede them, so we should look after the colon for additional information.  After the colon you find that the species are known for “their visual impact.” You need a word to describe “visual impact,” so you might predict “eye-catching,” or “noticeable,” or even “attractive” (in the sense that they attract more attention than other plants).  Take your prediction and match it to the answer choices.

(A) lethal
(B) diffuse
(C) varied
(D) striking
(E) resilient 

Many of these words are meant to be distractions.  Weeds are (B) “diffuse,” spreading out even where they are unwanted.  Weeds are also (E) “resilient,” growing in places where other plants cannot and flourishing even after gardeners have attempted to uproot them.  Some students might also be distracted by (C) “varied” because the author mentions both exotic and indigenous species.  Even (A) might seem promising if you only know that "lethal" is a negative word.  However, these answers do not match your prediction, which is based on the information that the author is most concerned about conveying.  The only word that matches your prediction is (D) “striking.”  This sentence demonstrates how important it is to use the Knowsys method.

The correct answer is (D).

Words tested in this SC:
Lethal: deadly
Diffuse: spread out, everywhere
Varied: diverse
Striking: making a strong impression
Resilient: strong, overcoming adversity
Exotic: foreign, non-native
Indigenous: native
Eclipse: overshadow