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ACT Reading: Inference

SAT Question of the Day

The SAT question of the day is an Algebra Question about ratios that has already been addressed on this blog: click here to see an explanation.

ACT Question of the Day

On the actual ACT exam, you would read the entire passage focusing on the topic, scope, purpose, topic sentences, and conclusion, if any.  Then you would prioritize the questions and answer them  in order of difficulty (answering all the Easy questions before all the Medium questions before all the Hard questions).  

This particular question is an inference question, which should be classified as Hard.  So, when you are prioritizing your questions, it would come in the third pass when you have had time to reflect on the whole passage.

Paraphrase the question as you read it:  Why does Mrs. Sennett say that the children are bad?  If you look at line 92, (the line given in question), you will notice that she says, "I want to get these bad, noisy children off my hands."  Does Mrs. Sennett really want that?  No!  This whole passage is about the fact that every time she tries to leave the children, they cry until she agrees to stay with them.  If Mrs. Sennett really thought that the children were bad, she would not care whether they cried.  She must care for them deeply because she wears herself out looking after them.  Look down at your answer choices.

(F)  This answer choice is meant to trick all the students who try to answer this question by only reading line 92.  Yes, Mrs. Sennett calls the children "bad, noisy children," but they are silent at this time (line 95).  Also, line 17 tells you that Mrs. Sennett is deaf, so there is no way that she will ever be bothered by the noise the children make.  Eliminate this choice.

(G)  Line 94 tells you that the children are hanging on her skirt, but there is no indication that this bothers Mrs. Sennett.  In fact, line 86 speaks of the children as supporting Mrs. Sennett rather than hanging on her, so she probably likes having the children near.  Eliminate this choice.

(H)  This answer choice matches your prediction.

(J)  This answer choice is far too extreme.  Mrs. Sennett is tired rather than angry.  At the same time, it is unlikely that the children "never" obey Mrs. Sennett; you read about them running errands for her multiple times in the passage.  Eliminate this choice.

The correct answer is (H).

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