Note: This is paired with our semicolon unit and available here:
Grammar Bundle: Parallelism Test and Semicolon Unit
Parallelism has always been important, but the problematic concept now claims prominence in Common Core State Standards and practice tests. Parallelism, the use of matching grammatical structures for comparison or implied comparison within a sentence (as in the use of coordinating conjunctions, comparisons, lists, series, linking verbs), is fully addressed in 9th and 10th grades. The reasons for using parallelism are many. Parallelism is an important aspect of purposeful and cohesive writing. To that end, the exam is written into a vignette, a short narrative about a competent teen, to illustrate how parallelism is used in everyday writing for flow and impact.
The pretest on parallelism is designed for grades 8-11; at this stage the concepts are useful in discussion of writing techniques, especially those related to rhetorical strategies necessary for analysis or to construction of effective evidence necessary for arguments.
• 20 multiple-choice test questions (in cloze passage format), which reference parallelism of words, phrases, and clauses.
The first 15 questions are words, phrases, and clauses excerpted from an original story. Text includes problems of parallelism with use of coordinating conjunctions, comparisons, linking verbs, lists, and series.
The last 5 questions are phrases or words excerpted from plausible five-paragraph thesis statements. All of the thesis statements are three-pronged. The student must choose the parallel structure to match the two existing structures.
• CCSS aligned
• The pretest may be given over a part of a class period, taking approximately 15-30 minutes. The exam may also serve as a posttest. Alternatively, the test is sectioned so that the thesis statement portion may be given before a writing assignment that includes 3-pronged thesis statements.
• 7 pages inclusive of the answer key
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