14 Closely Guarded Tips For Conquering Cloze Passages

By: Rosalind Ong
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Day 6: Let Me Tell You What I Do

Hi, I’m Teacher Rosalind from Fun Language Learning. This is the sixth article of the 14 Closely Guarded Cloze Tips  series brought to you by LearnSuperMart and Fun Language Learning.

As a bilingual specialist, I help Primary and Secondary school students achieve their desired grades in English and Chinese by guiding them to develop effective language learning strategies and skills.

1. One huge aspect of Language Clues is ‘Parts of Speech’. Understanding how a word fits in a sentence helps you select the most suitable word choice. 

From the title, can you guess the part of speech we are covering today?


2. Did you guess Verbs?

Verbs describe actions, states and processes.

I was running around the field when I saw her. Immediately, I called out to her.

  • Was → Helping verb (helps convey the tense, mood and voice of the verb)
  • Saw → State verb (describes a state) 
  • Called→ Action verb (describes an action)


3. How do you identify that a helping verb is required?

(e.g. is, are, was, were, has, have, had, do, does, did, can, could, may, might, will, would, shall, should)

Clue: The blank is before an action verb

  • We have eaten the bag of chips running. (present perfect tense; active voice)
  • The bag of chips was eaten. (passive voice)
  • Life is a game of chess. (indicative mood: a statement)
  • If I were a bird, I would travel the world. (subjunctive mood: an unlikely condition)


4. How do you identify that a state verb is required?

A state verb (e.g. see, feel, think [opinion], know, seem, understand, love, hate, believe, understand, want) are words involving feelings, opinions and the 5 senses.

Clue: The blank requires a verb that cannot be in the ‘–ing’ form; the blank is before the word ‘that’.

  • I believe you. (not ‘I am believing ’)
  • I hear him cry/crying. (not ‘I am hearing’)
  • I know that you don’t know that I know about this. (not ‘I am knowing’)


5. After verbs such as see/watch, hear, make and help, the next verb is the original verb.

He could have helped me carry (original verb) this box, but he did not. 

Some state verbs can function as action verbs: think and have.

  • I think I can do this. (state)
  • I am thinking about this. (process)
  • I have a pen. (state: I own a pen.)
  • I am having second thoughts about this. (process)


6. How do you identify that a verb is required?

Clue: A verb can appear after ‘to’.

I want to eat.


7. Try this:

i) The ball ____________ over my head, almost ____________ me cold.

ii) From the corner of my eye, I felt something ______________.

iii) She ___________  been feeling troubled lately.


Visit fllacademy.com or like Fun Language Learning Facebook Page for more language learning resources.

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Posted on 30/09/2017

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