ACT English Practice Test 81: The Joy of Sailing

DIRECTIONS: In the passages that follow, certain words and phrases are underlined and numbered. In the right-hand column, you will find alternatives for the underlined part. In most cases, you are to choose the one that best expresses the idea, makes the statement appropriate for standard written English, or is worded most consistently with the style and tone of the passage as a whole. If you think the original version is best, choose “NO CHANGE.” In some cases, you will find in the right-hand column a question about the underlined part. You are to choose the best answer to the question.

You will also find questions about a section of the passage, or about the passage as a whole. These questions do not refer to an underlined portion of the passage, but rather are identified by a number or numbers in a box.

For each question, choose the alternative you consider best and fill in the corresponding oval on your answer document. Read each passage through once before you begin to answer the questions that accompany it. For many of the questions, you must read several sentences beyond the question to determine the answer. Be sure that you have read far enough ahead each time you choose an alternative.


The Joy of Sailing

Pictures and postcards of the Caribbean do not lie; the with every shade of aquamarine, from pale pastel green to deep emerald and navy. The ocean hypnotizes with glassy vastness. A spell is set upon the soul and a euphoric swell rises . One Caribbean sailing trip in particular brings back fond memories.

On this beautiful day, my good friends and I joined a more experienced crew and sailed blissfully from one cay to another. As boating novices, my friends and I were in charge of spotting the light areas of the seafloor that signaled dangerous reefs. Ocean reefs have the potential to rupture the hull of any sailboat that passes over them, so while the electronic depth sounder is an indispensable tool, it is always helpful to find a reef ahead of time so that it can be more easily avoided.

50 All at once, a smooth sail can turn into complete pandemonium as the captain at the wheel begins directions to the first mate, who quickly begins struggling with the sails and rigging. Generally, the wind continues resistance. This makes the first mate's struggle more demanding and outright frightening to the less experienced boaters on board. This mad yelling and steering, along with the raucous for several minutes before all is right again and the boat settles into its new course. We novices, however, are still recovering from our terror and wondering all that supposed to happen? And they think this is fun?"

, the unpredictable wind not only slowed but stopped, and soon the boat did too. After several minutes, the ship's patient crew grudgingly the trolling motor.

Unfortunately, the motor wouldn't start and so we lay adrift at sea, no land in sight, just waiting. It was late afternoon when I began to recognize the panic that was rising in my throat. , the ship's captain got the engine running and we slowly trolled back to our cozy slip. The sails were up and the little motor hummed along. From the shore, we may have like we were actually sailing. 60

1.

F. NO CHANGE
G. water there shone
H. water shining
J. water there shines

2.

A. NO CHANGE
B. its
C. the
D. its'

3.

F. NO CHANGE
G. to push up the corners of the mouth
H. pushing the corners of the mouth up
J. to the mouth to push up the corners

4.

A. NO CHANGE
B. Because we were sailing through the cays, we were content.
C. Sailing through the cays brought us much delight.
D. DELETE the underlined portion.

5. Given that all are true, which of the following sentences, if added here, would most effectively introduce the new topic of this paragraph?

F. One aspect of boating that is reserved for the experts is tacking, the nautical term for changing direction.
G. The more experienced crew played a larger role in maneuvering the boat.
H. The captain and his first mate served as role models for those of us who were inexperienced boaters.
J. Sailing through the Caribbean is always a nice break from the realities of everyday life.

6.

A. NO CHANGE
B. yelling
C. to start yelling
D. DELETE the underlined portion.

7.

F. NO CHANGE
G. offered
H. to offer
J. by offering

8.

A. NO CHANGE
B. flapping of the sails, can go on
C. flapping of the sails, went on
D. flapping of the sails goes on

9.

F. NO CHANGE
G. The captain and first mate acknowledge each other once this has occurred, with congratulatory smiles.
H. Once this has occurred, the captain and first mate acknowledge each other with congratulatory smiles.
J. The captain and first mate, with congratulatory smiles once this has occurred, acknowledge each other.

10.

A. NO CHANGE
B. to ourselves; was
C. to ourselves, "Was
D. to ourselves was

11.

F. NO CHANGE
G. As we, heading, back toward the marina
H. The marina was what we were headed toward
J. As we headed back toward the marina

12.

A. NO CHANGE
B. turns on
C. is turning on
D. will turn on

13.

F. NO CHANGE
G. Therefore
H. Since then
J. Because of this

14.

A. NO CHANGE
B. looked
C. been looking
D. had looks

15. The writer is considering adding the following sentence:

Of course we weren't, and I admit that I was thrilled to see that the beautiful wind-powered craft could take on a motor in a pinch.

Would this sentence be a relevant addition at this point in the essay, and why?

F. Yes, because it illustrates another emotion the author felt while aboard the sailboat.
G. No, because it contains information that detracts from the focus of this paragraph.
H. Yes, because it effectively provides a conclusion to the paragraph that would otherwise be absent.
J. No, because it is unclear what the author means by the phrase "I know better."