2020年12月ACT回顧

2020 年 12 月 ACT 考題回顧:所有 4 篇閱讀文章!

過去這個週末學生考了 2020 年 12 月的 ACT 考試。如果這是你最後一次考 ACT,恭喜你完成了一個艱難的任務!

我們整理了 2020 年 12 月 ACT 考試當中的 4 篇閱讀文章,幫助學生準備未來的考試。


這些閱讀文章可以如何的幫助你?

1. 這些文章可以讓你知道你的英文程度以及準備考試的程度

首先,讀這些文章。你覺得他們讀起來很簡單還是很難?裡面有沒有很多生字,尤其是那些會影響你理解整篇文章的生字?如果有的話,雖然你可能是在美國讀書或讀國際學校、也知道 “如何讀跟寫英文”,但你還沒有足夠的生字基礎讓你 “達到下一個階段” (也就是大學的階段)。查一下這一些字,然後把它們背起來。這些生字不見得會在下一個 ACT 考試中出現,但是透過真正的 ACT 閱讀文章去認識及學習這些生字可以大大的減低考試中出現不會的生字的機率。

2. 這些文章會告訴你平時應該要讀哪些文章幫你準備閱讀考試

在我們的 Ivy-Way Reading Workbook(Ivy-Way 閱讀技巧書)的第一章節裡,我們教學生在閱讀文章之前要先讀文章最上面的開頭介紹。雖然你的 ACT 考試不會剛好考這幾篇文章,但你還是可以透過這些文章找到它們的來源,然後從來源閱讀更多相關的文章。閱讀更多來自這些地方的文章會幫助你習慣閱讀這種風格的文章。

3. 這些文章會幫助你發掘閱讀單元的技巧(如果閱讀單元對你來說不是特別簡單的話)

如果你覺得閱讀單元很簡單,或是你在做完之後還有剩幾分鐘可以檢查,那麼這個技巧可能就對你來說沒有特別大的幫助。但是,如果你覺得閱讀很難,或者你常常不夠時間做題,一個很好的技巧是先理解那一種的文章對你來說比較難,然後最後做這一篇文章。ACT 的閱讀文章包含這五種類型:

  • 社會研究:人類學,考古學,傳記,商業,經濟,教育,地理,歷史,政治學,心理學和社會學。
  • 自然科學:解剖學,天文學,生物學,植物學,化學,生態學,地質學,醫學,氣象學,微生物學,自然史,生理學,物理學,技術和動物學。
  • 散文小說:短篇小說或短篇小說的摘錄。
  • 人文:回憶錄和個人散文,以及建築,藝術,舞蹈,倫理,電影,語言,文學批評,音樂,哲學,廣播,電視和戲劇等內容領域。

舉例來說,假設你覺得跟美國獨立相關的文章是你在做連續的時候覺得最難的種類,那你在考試的時候可以考慮使用的技巧之一是把這篇文章留到最後再做。這樣一來,如果你在考試到最後時間不夠了,你還是可以從其他比較簡單文章中盡量拿分。


所有 2020 年 12月 ACT 考試閱讀文章

Passage 1

This passage is from the essay “InBetweens” by Diana Abu-Jaber. The narrator moves to Jordan with her Jordanian father, American mother, and two younger sisters.

        One night after my sisters and I are in bed and the

baby cats have ceased their crying, my parents come to

our room, whispering and nudging each other, their

smiles sly, as if they shared a private joke. They shake

us out of sleep and say, “C’mon, we’re going to do

something!”

        We yawn, slide out of the warm caves of our beds;

our parents are gesturing us out the front door, their

laughter lowered and mesmerizing. Then we are running

across the stone courtyard—my sisters and I bare-

footed in cotton pajamas, the stones waxy beneath our

feet. The neighbors and the street are all asleep, the

buildings shut up, rose-tinted under a brassy, round

moon. In one corner of the courtyard, tilted under the

staircase to the upper floors, is the scooter, its red

gleam muted now, private and soft. For a moment I

think of my grandmother back in New Jersey, who

wears a lipstick in the same fluid tones: red shot

through with an undercurrent of blue. I look back at it

as my parents open the car.

        We drive through parts of the city that I’ve never

seen before, where the lights glow like melted butter

and the girls on the sidewalks are wearing brimmed

hats and high heels. Men smile and turn to watch our

car passing: I watch back, hands pressed to the window.

Then we race beyond the glowing streets—they dwindle

to a star—and the road ahead of us is long and dusty

blue and smells like a warm, blue must, like the heat of

a sheep’s back.

        When we finally get out of the car, there’s a gravel

lot, an expanse of folding chairs, patios, sparkly restaurants

wedged in a long crescent along a flat blackness

like gleaming enamel. Dad holds his hand out toward

the gleam. “And what did I promise you kids?” he asks,

though I recall no promises related to anything like this.

“It’s the Dead Sea!”

        We’ve come, as usual, with no preparation, so my

parents let us run into the water in our underpants—like

the Jordanian kids around us. The salt water is satiny,

so soft and dense it seems to bend beneath our arms.

My father, who is generally afraid of the water, comes

out and shows us how you can sit in the sea. He lazes

back in it, and my sister tows him around by his hair

while he makes boat sounds.

        One of the restaurants on the lip of the water has a

string of red lights that drop their reflections in the

moonlit water; they make me think of the lonely red

scooter. After a while, I straggle out of the water, yank-

ing up my soggy underpants with their sprung elastic

waistband. Mom is stretched out on a canvas chaise

longue, holding a drink with a little parasol on the side.

She wraps me shivering into a beach towel and makes

room for me beside her on the lounge.

        I blink out of my towel cave at this new place

around us, then touch my mother’s ribs through her

cotton shirt. “Mom, how long do you have to be best

friends with someone if you’re best friends?”

        She flitters at my bangs; they’re drying stiff with

salt. “Well, honey, I don’t think there’s any rules about

that. I guess you can be best friends with someone your

whole life if you’re lucky.”

        “Are you and Dad best friends?”

        It’s hard to make out her expression under the

cherry lights. She seems to be thinking about it, staring

out to where Dad is still drifting around, piping and

tooting like a tugboat.

        “You have to do whatever your best friend says,

right?”

        Now I can see her face—amused and wary. “Why

do you say that?”

        “Dad said to come to Jordan, right?”

        There is even less sound now than before, if that is

possible, just a slip of waves on the shore, a sighing

wash like the sound of someone saying hush, hush, or

the rustle of the palm fronds arching over the sand.

“Your father . . . needed us to come here, he needed to

see—what it felt like.”

        “What does it feel like?” I ask quietly, not quite

knowing what I’m asking, just following the path of the

questions.

        “I don’t think—” she starts, then stops. My father

is climbing out of the dark wash of the sea. “I don’t

think it feels the way he remembers it.”

        I put my hands on her waist—something that feels

a little like a spark of alarm bounces through me. “Does

he know that? That it doesn’t feel the same?”

        She looks over her shoulder, my father’s shadow

falling toward us in a long, cool slip as he walks

beneath the neon lights. “He’s still finding out.”

        The medicinal waters of the Dead Sea roll behind

us, and the wild, heavy scent of honey, rocks, and

thyme tempers the air. People come to dip themselves

in these waters, to be cured of everything from skin ailments

to spiritual wasting. I breathe it in deeply and

sense a sort of dawning sweetness—of loss and nostalgia.

Reprinted by permission of The Joy Harris Literary Agency, Inc.


Passage 2

This passage is from the article “The Awful Reign of the Red Delicious” by Sarah Yager.

        In the 1870s, Jesse Hiatt, an Iowa farmer, discovered

a mutant seedling in his orchard of Yellow Bell-

flower apple trees. He chopped it down, but the next

season, it sprang back through the dirt. He chopped it

down again. It sprang back again. “If thee must grow,”

he told the intrepid sprout, “thee may.”

        A decade later, Hiatt’s tree bore its first fruit. The

apples were elongated globes with red-and-gold striped

skin, crisp flesh, and a five-pointed calyx. In 1893,

when Stark Brothers’ Nursery of Louisiana, Missouri,

held a contest to find a replacement for the Ben

Davis—then the most widely planted apple in the coun-

try, strapping and good-looking but bland—Hiatt sub-

mitted his new variety, which he called the Hawkeye.

“My, that’s delicious,” Clarence Stark, the company’s

president, reportedly said after his first bite.

        But not for the first time in apple lore, one sweet

taste precipitated a fall. Stark Brothers’ soon secured

the rights to the Hawkeye, changed its name to the

Stark Delicious (only after the branding of the Golden

Delicious, in 1914, did it become the Red Delicious),

and began an ambitious marketing campaign. Over the

next two decades, the nursery spent $750,000 to pro-

mote the new apple, dispatching traveling salesmen to

farms across the country and exhibiting the Delicious at

the 1904 World’s Fair. After the completion of the

Great Northern Railway, Clarence Stark sent trainloads

of seedlings to newly established orchards in the

Columbia River Valley, their leaves trembling as the

engines rumbled West.

        With its hardy rootstocks and juicy, curvaceous

fruit, the Red Delicious quickly became a favorite of

growers and consumers from coast to coast—and as its

commercial success grew, so did its distance from

Hiatt’s Hawkeye. In 1923, a New Jersey orchardist

wrote to the Starks to report that one limb of a tree he

had purchased from the nursery was producing crimson

apples while those on the other limbs remained green.

A chance genetic mutation that made the apples redden

earlier had also given them a deeper, more uniform

color, and customers were lining up for a taste. Paul

Stark, one of Clarence’s sons, travelled up from Missouri

and laid down $6,000 for the limb. News of the

deal spread, and soon The Gettysburg Times reported

that more than 500 horticulturalists from 30 states had

gathered at the orchard to discuss the “freak bud” that

produced “the marvel apple of the age.” Their meeting

marked the beginning of an era of fruit improvement,

as growers began to seek out and cultivate similar

mutations.

        By the 1940s, the Red Delicious had become the

country’s most popular apple, with the broad shoulders

and lipstick shine of a Golden Age Hollywood star. The

cosmetic changes were a boon for industrial agriculturalists:

Apples that turned rosy before they were fully

ripe could be picked earlier and stored longer, and skins

with more red pigment tended to be thicker, which

extended shelf life and hid bruises. But as genes for

beauty were favored over those for taste, the skins grew

tough and bitter around mushy, sugar-soaked flesh.

Still, by the 1980s, the Red Delicious made up 75 percent

of the crop produced in Washington. By the time

selective breeding had taken its toll, according to apple

expert Tom Burford, a few big nurseries controlled the

market, planting decisions were made from the remove

of boardrooms, and consumers didn’t have many varieties

to choose from. The Red Delicious became “the

largest compost-maker in the country,” he said, as shop-

pers routinely bought the apples and threw them away.

        Then in the 1990s, new varieties that American

growers had originally developed for overseas markets

began to edge into the domestic market. Shoppers had

been “eating with their eyes and not their mouths,”

Burford said. And now their taste buds had been awakened.

A sudden shift in consumer preferences, paired

with growing competition from orchards in China, took

the industry by surprise. Between 1997 and 2000, U.S.

apple growers lost nearly $800 million in surplus crop.

They had “made the apples redder and redder, and prettier

and prettier, and they just about bred themselves

out of existence,” a marketing director for one North-

western fruit company told The New York Times.

        Since then, Red Delicious production has declined

by 40 percent. While the apple is still by far the most

common in the U.S.—growers produced 54 million

bushels of Red Delicious in 2011, compared to just

33 million bushels of its closest competitor, the Gala—

the industry is adjusting to a changing market.

© 2014 The Atlantic Media Co., as first published in The Atlantic Magazine. All rights reserved. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC


Passage 3

This passage is from the article “Photography Changes the Movies We Choose to See” by Preminda Jacob.

        For nearly five decades, huge photo-realistic bill-

boards of film stars towered over the streets of Chennai,

a major hub of the vibrant and prolific Indian film

industry. Expertly hand-painted on canvas banners and

plywood cutouts, these eye-catching advertisements

extracted dreamlike images of wealth, beauty, and

revenge from films screened in darkened and air-

conditioned theaters and displayed them in the sunlitglare

of urban thoroughfares.

        The selection of these photographic stills, plucked

from films and enlarged to architectural proportions

(one hundred feet in length for banners and forty feet in

height for cutouts) was calculated to excite the public

and nourish a “spectatorial consciousness,” what

Roland Barthes, a French cultural critic who often

wrote about photography, described as the experiential

quality of still photographic images. Barthes recalled

being transfixed by still images from movies, but then

losing all memory of them while viewing the film they

came from. Our perception of a moving cinematic

image, he explained, is always determined by the

frames that both precede and follow it. In contrast, a

single and isolated film still that stands alone can be

viewed indefinitely and more carefully.

        While the artists who crafted Chennai’s cinematic

billboards were probably unaware of Barthes’ theories,

interviews I conducted with them reminded me how

aware they were of distinctions between still and

moving images. I recall one anecdote in particular.

Mr. Vedachellam—a billboard artist and entrepreneur—

explained to me that his film-industry clientele routinely

attempted to circumvent censorship by protesting

to the authorities that the provocative still photographs

featured on billboards were simply taken from film

footage already cleared by the censors. The police com-

missioner’s canny rejoinder to the publicity agents’

appeals, Mr. Vedachellam recalled, was to remind them

that these questionable stills appeared on the cinema

screen for only a few seconds so viewers would soon

forget them, or may not even have quite “seen” them at

all. Freezing and enlarging such images, he argued, was

a different matter altogether. And displaying them

prominently on major thoroughfares would likely result

in costly traffic jams and additional accidents. The

police routinely censored these images by pasting

pieces of white paper over offending portions of the

billboards.

        In his work, Barthes made another, different point

about distinctions between photographic and painted

images. A photograph, he claimed, is indexical—it has

a direct and detailed correspondence to the subject,

whereas in a drawn or painted image, each mark or

brushstroke potentially takes on more symbolic value.

So, what happens when the conventions of three media

coalesce? A photograph of Mr. Vedachellam at work

records a complex nexus of photography, painting, and

the cinema. Each medium mimics some of the charac

teristics of the two others. Vedachellam’s painting style

is photorealistic; he copies a photograph that is, itself, a

composite of film stills. And these film stills reflect the

influence of the melodramatic look of nineteenth-

century European tableaux painting on the sets, costumes,

and lighting of the first full-length feature films

produced both in Hollywood and in India.

        The hybridization of these media dates back to the

work of India’s earliest photographers. From the 1850s

to the present, local entrepreneurs operating photo studios

have employed painters to enhance portrait photographs

of their clients with drama and desirable

accoutrements that were absent in the original photographs.

The theatricality of Indian studio photo –

graphs, and the fantasies they fulfill, has in turn

influenced the idealized ways celebrities are represented

in the hand-painted cinema advertisements. Like

their counterparts in the world of studio photography,

banner artists also painted directly onto a photograph in

the process of creating studies for their spectacular

enlargements. Using black-and-white poster paints,

they first painstakingly outlined every detail in the photograph.

Next, a photographic negative of the outlined

image was projected onto the canvas or plywood sur-

face and a tracing was made. At every stage in the

process artists grasped a film still in one hand while

wielding a paintbrush with the other hand.

        This method of transferring photographic stills

onto canvas encouraged artists to further manipulate

and idealize images of their celebrity subjects.

From the article “Photography Changes the Movies We Choose to See” by Preminda Jacob (©2012 by Preminda Jacob). Used with permission.


Passage 4

Passage A is from the book Animal Wise: The Thoughts and Emotions of Our Fellow Creatures by Virginia Morell. Passage B is from the essay “Big Love: The Emotional Lives of Elephants” by Carl Safina.

Passage I

        One of the more striking discoveries in neuro-

science in recent years is the finding that elephants,

whales, great apes, and humans all possess a peculiar

kind of brain cell. These neurons were first discovered

in human brains in the nineteenth century and were

named von Economo cells after the Romanian

anatomist Constantin von Economo, who identified

them. At first, these spindle-shaped neurons were

touted as the cells that “make us human,” because

they’re connected to our feelings of empathy, love,

emotional suffering, and sociality. Then, in 1999, two

other researchers, Patrick Hof and John Allman, spotted

von Economo cells in the brains of all the great apes;

others recently found them in monkeys. Allman has

searched without luck for the cells in more than a hundred

other species, from sloths to platypuses. So it was

big news when, in 2007, he discovered spindle cells in

the brains of whales, dolphins, and elephants. But it

was a puzzling discovery, too. Why should such a disparate

group of animals have these specialized cells?

        From an evolutionary point of view, it’s not surprising

that primates and humans have von Economo

cells, since we are in the same lineage. But primates

and humans haven’t shared an ancestor with whales or

elephants since about the beginning of the mammalian

lineage, some sixty million years ago. It seems that

cetaceans and elephants evolved their spindle cells

independently. What factors would produce such emotionally

specialized brain cells?

         Allman thinks part of the answer lies in the size of

the animals’ brains—most species that have spindle

cells also have notably large brains—and in the location

of the cells. Von Economo cells are always found in two

regions of the cortex associated with emotionally

charged, visceral judgments, such as deciding whether

a fellow animal is suffering. And part of the answer lies

in the size of the spindle cells. They are unusually

large, enabling them to act like high-speed circuits,

fast-tracking information to and from other parts of the

brain, while bypassing unnecessary connections. These

are the kind of cells, Allman argues, that would be

especially useful to an animal living in a complex society—

a society in which making accurate, intuitive decisions

about another’s actions (or facial or vocal

expressions) is crucial for your family’s and your

survival.

Passage II

Anthropomorphism is the attribution of human motivation,

characteristics, or behavior to animals, inanimate objects, or

natural phenomena.

        In establishing the study of animal behavior as a

science, it had originally been helpful to make anthro-

pomorphism a word that raised a red flag. But as lesser

intellects followed the Nobel Prize–winning pioneers,

anthropomorphism became a pirate flag. If the word

was hoisted, an attack was imminent. You wouldn’t get

your work published. And in the academic realm of

publish or perish, jobs were at stake. Even the most

informed, insightful, logical inferences about other ani-

mals’ motivations, emotions, and awareness could

wreck your professional prospects.

        But what is a “human” emotion? When someone

says you can’t attribute human emotions to animals,

they forget the key leveling detail: humans are animals.

Human sensations are animal sensations. Inherited

sensations, using inherited nervous systems.

         All of the emotions we know of just happen to be

emotions that humans feel. So, simply deciding that

other animals can’t have any emotions that humans feel

is a cheap way to get a monopoly on all of the world’s

feelings and motivation. People who’ve systematically

watched or known animals realize the absurdity of this.

But many others still don’t. “The dilemma remains,”

wrote author Caitrin Nicol recently, “how to get an

accurate understanding of the animals’ nature and (if

appropriate) emotions, without imposing on them

assumptions born of a distinctly human understanding

of the world.”

         But tell me, what “distinctly human understand-

ing” hampers our understanding of other animals’ emotions?

Is it our sense of pleasure, pain, hunger,

frustration, self-preservation, defense, parental protection?

We never seem to doubt that an animal acting

hungry feels hungry. What reason is there to disbelieve

that an elephant who seems happy is happy? We can’t

really claim scientific objectivity when we recognize

hunger and thirst when animals are eating and drinking,

exhaustion when they tire, but deny them joy and happiness

as they’re playing with their children and their

families. Yet the science of animal behavior has long

operated with that bias—and that’s unscientific. In science,

the simplest interpretation of evidence is often

the best.

Passage A: Excerpt(s) from ANIMAL WISE: THE THOUGHTS AND

EMOTIONS OF OUR FELLOW CREATURES by Virginia Morell, copy-

right © 2013 by Virginia Morell. Used by permission of Crown Books, an

imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random

House LLC. All rights reserved.

Passage B: ©2015 by Carl Safina. Used by permission of Carl Safina in

care of the Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency, Inc.(permissions@jvnla.com)


2020 年 12 月 ACT 考試閱讀題目

Ivy-Way 學生在上課的過程就會做到 2020 年 12 月以及其他的官方歷年考題。除此之外,我們也有讓學生來我們的教室或在家做模考的服務讓學生評估自己的學習進度並看到成績。如果你想預約時間來我們的教室或在家做模考,請聯繫我們!如果你想購買考題在家做,學生可以在Ivy-Way蝦皮商城Ivy-Way臉書粉專、或 Line (ivyway) 直接購買喔!


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