Exam preparation

This page is designed to give you advice and resources to better prepare for the end of year exam.

Specific instructions for students with an IEP are contained at the end of this document

The exam is 1.5 hours in length and has 5 parts

Part A: Literature 30 minutes
Part B: Advertising 15 minutes
Part C: Reading comprehension 15 minutes
Part D: Language, vocabulary and spelling 20 minutes
Part E: Grammar 10 minutes

Part A on Literature has two parts

1 question on two indigenous poems
1 question on an extract from The Wave

How to prepare for this part

1. Read any previous poetry analysis you have done on indigenous poets including Kath Walker

2. Memorise the SPEC/SLIMS approach. I have reproduced that here for you from the following website

Subject matter of the poem: What event, situation or experience does the poem describe or record?
Purpose or theme, or message of the poet: What is the poet’s purpose in writing this? What message does he/she want to communicate?
Emotion, or mood or feeling: What is the predominant emotion or mood of the poem? Does the mood change during the poem? What emotions does the poet seek to evoke in the reader?
Craftsmanship or technique: What are the specific skills the poet has used in creating this poem (look at SLIMS below).

Looking further at Craftsmanship…

Structure: How is this poem structured? Does it have stanzas with a regular number of lines, or any other interesting features of structural ‘design?’
Language: How would you describe the poets use of words – vivid, striking, effective, colourless and predictable? Is the language appropriate to subject/theme? What effect does the language have?
Imagery: Are there any striking examples of similes, metaphors, personifications or symbols in the poem? What is their effect?
Movement, or rhythm: Does the poem have a regular (slow or fast) rhythm? What is the effect of any rhythmic qualities?
Sounds: Does the poem have any significant sound features? Does the poet use onomatopoeia, alliteration, or assonance? Does the poem rhyme? What are the effects of these sound features to the poem as a whole?

Summary: summarise the poem as a whole. What is the impact of the whole poem? How successful is the poem to convey emotion or feeling, or to convey the poem’s message?

3. Read these notes on poetic techniques

Poets, including song writers) aim to create a picture in your mind through a careful use of language and close attention to how they construct their poem. Poets have a variety of techniques they can use. Some of these are:

Form – the way the poem is arranged

Rhythm. Rhythm is the beat of the poem or song. It is caused by the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in a line. If this is regular it causes the beat or the rhythm. I have an explanation of types of patterns on this website – choose the September post entitled poetry is repetition – scanning poetry to read more. At its most absolute basic you can simply count the number of syllables in each line to see if there is a pattern there.

Rhyme. If a poet has the end word in a line rhyming with another one and if this causes a regular pattern then you can describe the rhyme scheme. Two lines rhyming with each other is a rhyming couplet. Remember that a verse of poetry is called a stanza. 4 line stanzas are quatrains and 3 line stanzas are tercets. Use letters of teh alphabet to describe a rhyme scheme – example abab cdcd or aabb ccdd


Imagery. Imagery refers to the pictures a poet draw in your mind through the words they choose to use. Similes are where a poet says two objects are like each other (example: The sea was like a dog foaming at the mouth) and a metaphor is when the poet says one object is another (example: the sea was a mad dog foaming at the mouth. Personification is when an object that is not human is given a human characteristic. (Example: The wind laughed an evil laugh as it twitched the trees around)

Language devices. Poets use a range of devices to make poems sound more effective. Repetition of a vowel sound in a series of words is assonance. Repetition of consonant sounds in a number of words is alliteration. Onomatopoeia is when a poet uses a word that sounds like the sound – e.g clank, tick tock etc

Other effects include asking rhetorical questions, repeating words or phrases for an effect and using symbols where something represents other ideas e.g a dove represents peace, the colour red represents fire and power and anger

4. The exam will contain a section from the novel The Wave. You will use that extract to write an extended piece about the novel’s characters and plot and an explanation of the novel’s themes contained in this extract.

To prepare for this I suggest the following:

1. Read over the assignment “Wave chapter work” and check any blog posts you made
2. Borrow the novel and skim read it or watch the movie at http://www.thewave.tk/ – you will find the movie we watched in class in two parts here
3. You could check out this website of study notes on The Wave: study-guide

Part B is on advertising

You wil be given an advertisement you have not seen and will be asked to write a 4 paragraph anlaysis like those we have done in class.

To prepare for this read your scrapbook pieces on advertisements

remember to use 4 paragraphs

1. Describe what you see in the advertisement
2. Explain the type of appeal/appeals the advertiser is using to attract you – re-read page 1 of your scrapbook
3. Explain the link between any picture and the slogan = attempting to explain the meaning of the advertisement
4. Finish by explaining how effective the advertisement is

Part C is on reading comprehension

This has 3 articles taken from a NAPLAN test.

There is no required preparation for this although you could prepare for this by going to the following website

http://www.nap.edu.au/verve/_resources/Example_Test_Reading_Magazine_Y9.pdf has a reading magazine
http://www.nap.edu.au/verve/_resources/Example_Test_Reading_Y9.pdf has the questions
http://www.nap.edu.au/verve/_resources/Example_Test_Answer_Reading_Y9.pdf has the answers

Part D is on Langauge, vocabulary and spelling

To prepare for this do the following

1. Read about how our language has changed at http://www.betterspellers.blogspot.com.au/
2. Read the piece you wrote in term 1 on our changing language
3. Know what a homophone is
4. Learn the meaning of these words – you will need to know around 10 of them

allegory, narrative, character, alliteration, assonance, ballad, stanza, dialogue, rhyme, rhythm, theme, symmetry, climax, plot, diction, setting, hyperbole, exaggeration, irony, literal, metaphor, simile, personification, onomatopoeia, pathos, rhetoric, satire, soliloquy, versification, syllable, poetic voice, symbol

Part E is on grammar

to prepare for this make sure you know these types of speech: noun, verb, pronoun, adjective, adverb, conjunction and preposition

You will do well if you have kept up with the work through the year and do some preparation using this as a guide

Any problems please come and ask me.

Specific instructions for students on an IEP

The exam is still 1.5 hours long. Students will have a scribe/helper to assist them

Part A Literature

There will be 1 indigenous poem with a series of questions to answer about the poem. This will not be a poem they have already seen or studied.

To study – know what is meant by theme, rhyme, rhythm, stanza, simile, metaphor,

Part B Advertising

Students wil be given an advertisement they have not already seen and asked to write two paragraphs of information on it.

Paragraph 1: Describe everything you can see in the advertisement

Paragraph 2 – explain the meaning of the advertisement – its appeal (pathos, ethos or logos), what the link is beween the slogan and the images and how it tries to persuade us to buy the product.

To study – page 1 of your scrapbook and any advertisement descriptions already done in your scrapbook – should have 2

Part C – Reading comprehension

Students will be given excerpts from Grade 5, Grade 7 and Grade 9 level NAPLAN tests

Part D – Vocabulary, spelling, grammar and punctuation

Students will be given excerpts from Grade 5, Grade 7 and Grade 9 level NAPLAN tests

Part E – Creative writing

Students will be asked to write either a creative narrative on a given topic or a persuasive piece on a given topic. They need to write in clear sentences and paragraphs. The emphasis here is less on the skills of those styles of writing and more on the accuracy and clarity of their writing.

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