14 Closely Guarded Tips For Conquering Cloze Passages

By: Rosalind Ong
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Day 12: Making Sense By Asking

Hi, I’m Teacher Rosalind from Fun Language Learning. This is the twelfth 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. You have learned some ways to use Background Clues on Day 3. Today, we will look at an inference tool.

From the title, can you guess what we are covering today?

Clue: Einstein said, “If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask, for once I know the proper question, I could solve the problem in less than five minutes.”


2. Yes, it’s about Asking The Right Questions to infer.

“What a perfect day!” Amos said as he opened the windows and took a deep breath.

“Exactly! Why don’t we go for a picnic?” Brendon suggested, wagging his tail.

With __________ eyes, both of them looked at me and chorused, “Can we?”


To come up with the missing word, focus on the clues (in bold) and ask yourself these questions:


a) Open-ended questions - 5W1H Questions

They open up possibilities and options.

• What are Brendon and Amos doing?

They are requesting to go for a picnic.

• When would people chorus?

People chorus when they have the same opinion or when they are excited about something.

• Why are Brendon and Amos looking at me?

They are making a request to me and expecting an answer from me.

• What would Brendon and Amos expect?

They are expecting a positive answer from me.

• How do Brendon and Amos feel?

They might be happy, hopeful or excited.

• What kind of eyes will someone have when he is requesting for something and expecting a positive answer?

Hopeful, eager, expectant, excited


b) Close-ended questions—Yes or No Questions

They narrow down the options.

• Are they happy? Yes

• Is happy a good answer? No.

  (Why? [open-ended] It is too general.)

Are they hopeful?  Yes.

Are they eager? Yes.

Are they expectant? Yes.

Are they excited? Yes.

Are these words adjectives? Yes.

Sometimes the answers to some close-ended questions might be ‘No’. Eliminate them and choose one possible option.

Interchange open-ended and close-ended questions.


3. Try this:

What questions did you ask to arrive at the answer for this example?

“What a perfect day!” Amos said as he opened the windows and took a deep ___________.


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

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Posted on 06/10/2017

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