Supporting an author's claim
Author's purpose
Supporting the central idea
Making inferences
100

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

The only way to make a lot of sugar is to engineer a system in which an army of workers swarms through the fields, cuts the cane, and hauls the pile to be crushed into a syrup that flows into the boiling room. There, laboring around the clock, workers cook and clean the bubbling liquid so that the sweetest syrup turns into the sweetest sugar. This is not farming the way men and women had done it for thousands of years in the Age of Honey. It is much more like a factory, where masses of people must do every step right, on time, together, or the whole system collapses.


What claim do the authors make in this passage?

Sugar farming is a modern version of honey farming.

Sugar cane has to be boiled in order to make sugar.

Sugar production requires a great deal of workers.

This method of making sugar is thousands of years old.

What claim do the authors make in this passage?

Sugar farming is a modern version of honey farming.

Sugar cane has to be boiled in order to make sugar.

Sugar production requires a great deal of workers.

This method of making sugar is thousands of years old.

100

Which question should a reader ask to identify an author's purpose?

Why did the author write this text?

What evidence does the author provide?

What is the author's opinion on this topic?

How effective is the evidence?

Which question should a reader ask to identify an author's purpose?

Why did the author write this text?

What evidence does the author provide?

What is the author's opinion on this topic?

How effective is the evidence?

100

Which type of evidence would most likely include a testimonial?

empirical 

logical

ethical

anecdotal

Which type of evidence would most likely include a testimonial?

empirical 

logical

ethical

anecdotal

100

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

One of these early Hindu writings, the Atharva Veda, speaks of an archer's bow made of sugar cane. It tells of growing a circle of sugar cane as a kind of sweet protection for a lover, and it includes specific instructions on how to use sugar cane.


Which inference does this passage support?

Hindus who lived in ancient times used sugar the same way we use it today.

Hindus who lived in ancient times believed that sugar had powerful properties.

Most Hindus in ancient times had very few specific uses for sugar cane.

Most Hindus in ancient times searched for new ways to use sugar cane.

Which inference does this passage support?

Hindus who lived in ancient times used sugar the same way we use it today.

Hindus who lived in ancient times believed that sugar had powerful properties.

Most Hindus in ancient times had very few specific uses for sugar cane.

Most Hindus in ancient times searched for new ways to use sugar cane.

200

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

No one could have seen it at the time, but the invention of beet sugar was not just a challenge to cane. It was a hint—just a glimpse, like a twist that comes about two thirds of the way through a movie—that the end of the Age of Sugar was in sight. For beet sugar showed that in order to create that perfect sweetness you did not need slaves, you did not need plantations, in fact you did not even need cane. Beet sugar was a foreshadowing of what we have today: the Age of Science, in which sweetness is a product of chemistry, not whips.

In 1854 only 11 percent of world sugar production came from beets. By 1899 the percentage had risen to about 65 percent. And beet sugar was just the first challenge to cane. By 1879 chemists discovered saccharine—a laboratory-created substance that is several hundred times sweeter than natural sugar. Today the sweeteners used in the foods you eat may come from corn (high-fructose corn syrup), from fruit (fructose), or directly from the lab (for example, aspartame, invented in 1965, or sucralose—Splenda—created in 1976). Brazil is the land that imported more Africans than any other to work on sugar plantations, and in Brazil the soil is still perfect for sugar. Cane grows in Brazil today, but not always for sugar. Instead, cane is often used to create ethanol, much as corn farmers in America now convert their harvest into fuel.


Which sentence best states the authors' claim in this passage?

Today we have many sources of sugar, but sugarcane is still the best source.

Advances in the production of sweeteners hastened the end of involuntary servitude.

The Age of Science has made the role of modern chemists similar to the former role of slaves.

Brazilians make ethanol from sugarcane because they cannot grow corn successfully.

Which sentence best states the authors' claim in this passage?

Today we have many sources of sugar, but sugarcane is still the best source.

Advances in the production of sweeteners hastened the end of involuntary servitude.

The Age of Science has made the role of modern chemists similar to the former role of slaves.

Brazilians make ethanol from sugarcane because they cannot grow corn successfully.

200

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Sugar was the connection, the tie, between slavery and freedom. In order to create sugar, Europeans and colonists in the Americas destroyed Africans, turned them into objects. Just at that very same moment, Europeans—at home and across the Atlantic—decided that they could no longer stand being objects themselves. They each needed to vote, to speak out, to challenge the rules of crowned kings and royal princes. How could that be? Why did people keep speaking of equality while profiting from slaves? In fact, the global hunger for slave-grown sugar led directly to the end of slavery. Following the strand of sugar and slavery leads directly into the tumult of the Age of Revolutions. For in North America, then England, France, Haiti, and once again North America, the Age of Sugar brought about the great, final clash between freedom and slavery.


Based on this excerpt, the authors are most likely to attempt to answer which question?

How did colonists challenge the rules of crowned kings?

How did the Age of Sugar differ from the Age of Revolutions?

When did Europeans decide to speak about equality?

Why did some Europeans decide they wanted to speak out about slavery?

Based on this excerpt, the authors are most likely to attempt to answer which question?

How did colonists challenge the rules of crowned kings?

How did the Age of Sugar differ from the Age of Revolutions?

When did Europeans decide to speak about equality?

Why did some Europeans decide they wanted to speak out about slavery?

200

Which pieces of evidence are most likely empirical? Select two options.


quotations from planters describing formerly enslaved people and Indian workers

stories about rivalries between formerly enslaved people and Indian workers

a historical study showing that Indian workers were paid low wages

recorded conversations with families whose ancestors experienced rivalries

research showing that planters encouraged rivalry between workers

Which pieces of evidence are most likely empirical? Select two options.


quotations from planters describing formerly enslaved people and Indian workers

stories about rivalries between formerly enslaved people and Indian workers

a historical study showing that Indian workers were paid low wages

recorded conversations with families whose ancestors experienced rivalries

research showing that planters encouraged rivalry between workers

200

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Twenty-three years earlier, King Louis XIV had issued a set of rules that defined slavery as legal in the French sugar islands. But when two slaves managed to reach France, he freed them—saying they became free "as soon as they [touched] the soil" of France. The judges sided with Pauline—she was real to them, human, not a piece of property. For Pauline's judges, as for King Louis, slavery far off across the seas was completely different from enslaved individuals in France.


Which words best create a positive, hopeful tone?

free, real, and human

legal, rules, and judges 

King, individuals, and property

islands, soil, and seas

Which words best create a positive, hopeful tone?

free, real, and human

legal, rules, and judges 

King, individuals, and property

islands, soil, and seas

300

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

From the 1750s on, sugar transformed how Europeans ate. Chefs who served the wealthy began to divide meals up. Where sugar had previously been used either as a decoration (as in the wedding feast) or as a spice to flavor all courses, now it was removed from recipes for meat, fish, and vegetables and given its own place—in desserts. Dessert as the extremely sweet end to the meal was invented because so much sugar was available. But the wealthy were not the only ones whose meals were changing. Sugar became a food, a necessity, and the foundation of the diet for England's poorest workers.

How does the use of the word transformed support the claim in this passage?

It indicates that sugar was becoming important to those who liked desserts.

It indicates that sugar was more important to Europeans than spices were.

It indicates that the addition of sugar to diets made Europeans better cooks.

It indicates that the addition of sugar was a significant change to Europeans' diets.

300

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World. 

In one part of Russia, though, the nobles who owned the land were interested in trying out new tools, new equipment, and new ideas about how to improve the soil. This area was in the northern Ukraine just crossing into the Russian regions of Voronigh and Hurst. When word of the breakthrough in making sugar reached the landowners in that one more advanced part of Russia, they knew just what to do: plant beets.

Cane sugar had brought millions of Africans into slavery, then helped foster the movement to abolish the slave trade. In Cuba large-scale sugar planting began in the 1800s, brought by new owners interested in using modern technology. Some of these planters led the way in freeing Cuban slaves. Now beet sugar set an example of modern farming that helped convince Russian nobles that it was time to free their millions of serfs. And that is precisely where Marc's family story begins—with Nina's grandfather, the serf who bought his freedom from figuring out how to color beet sugar.


What is the purpose of this passage?

to explain the new technologies farmers used in the 1800s

to connect a period of Russian history with the history of sugar

to explain to readers how enslaved Africans differed from Russian serfs

to give background information about the origins of cane sugar

What is the purpose of this passage?

to explain the new technologies farmers used in the 1800s

to connect a period of Russian history with the history of sugar

to explain to readers how enslaved Africans differed from Russian serfs

to give background information about the origins of cane sugar

300

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Gandhi began to see that there was a way for the indentured Indians to strengthen themselves without having to rely on machetes and guns. Freedom, he realized, did not come only from rising up against oppressors or tyrants. It could also be found in oneself. The mere fact that the sugar masters treated their workers as some form of property did not mean the Indians had to accept that definition. In fact, it was up to them to claim, to assert, their own worth, their own value. A man who had his inner, personal dignity was free—no matter how a boss tried to bully him. Gandhi’s years in South Africa became a laboratory, as he experimented with how to be a truthful, free person. Finally, he was ready to put his ideas into practice.

How does the evidence support the central idea that Gandhi decided it was time to replace violence with nonviolent protest?

The evidence notes that Gandhi encouraged indentured Indians to get rid of their weapons.

The evidence reveals Gandhi’s belief that workers should peacefully accept how they are treated.

The evidence shows how Gandhi experimented with ways to assert one’s dignity and be free.

The evidence indicates that bosses bullied workers, which Gandhi knew led to violence.


How does the evidence support the central idea that Gandhi decided it was time to replace violence with nonviolent protest?

The evidence notes that Gandhi encouraged indentured Indians to get rid of their weapons.

The evidence reveals Gandhi’s belief that workers should peacefully accept how they are treated.

The evidence shows how Gandhi experimented with ways to assert one’s dignity and be free.

The evidence indicates that bosses bullied workers, which Gandhi knew led to violence.


300

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Not only were Russian farms run on unfree labor, but they used very simple, old-fashioned methods of farming. Like the English back in the time of Henry III, all Russians aside from the very wealthy still lived in the Age of Honey—sugar was a luxury taken out only when special guests came to visit. Indeed, as late as 1894, when the average English person was eating close to ninety pounds of sugar a year, the average Russian used just eight pounds.

What inference does the passage best support?

Most Russians in the 1890s were not wealthy.

Most English citizens were very wealthy.

Russians did not run their farms well.

English people were fonder of sweets.

What inference does the passage best support?

Most Russians in the 1890s were not wealthy.

Most English citizens were very wealthy.

Russians did not run their farms well.

English people were fonder of sweets.

400

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

The Muslims worked out a new form of farming to handle sugar, which came to be called the sugar plantation. A plantation was not a new technology but, rather, a new way of organizing planting, growing, cutting, and refining a crop. On a regular farm there may be cows, pigs, and chickens; fields of grain; orchards filled with fruit—many different kinds of foods to eat or sell. By contrast, the plantation had only one purpose: to create a single product that could be grown, ground, boiled, dried, and sold to distant markets. Since one cannot live on sugar, the crop grown on plantations could not even feed the people who harvested it. Never before in human history had farms been run this way, as machines designed to satisfy just one craving of buyers who could be thousands of miles away.

On a plantation there were large groups of workers—between fifty and several hundred. The mill was right next to the crop, so that growing and grinding took place in the same spot.


Which text evidence best supports the authors' claim?

"A plantation was not a new technology but, rather, a new way of organizing planting, growing, cutting, and refining a crop."

"By contrast, the plantation had only one purpose: to create a single product that could be grown, ground, boiled, dried, and sold to distant markets."

"Since one cannot live on sugar, the crop grown on plantations could not even feed the people who harvested it."

"The mill was right next to the crop, so that growing and grinding took place in the same spot."


Which text evidence best supports the authors' claim?

"A plantation was not a new technology but, rather, a new way of organizing planting, growing, cutting, and refining a crop."

"By contrast, the plantation had only one purpose: to create a single product that could be grown, ground, boiled, dried, and sold to distant markets."

"Since one cannot live on sugar, the crop grown on plantations could not even feed the people who harvested it."

"The mill was right next to the crop, so that growing and grinding took place in the same spot."

400

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Starting around 1800, sugar became the staple food that allowed the English factories—the most advanced economies in the world—to run. Sugar supplied the energy, the hint of nutrition, the sweet taste to go with the warmth of tea that even the poorest factory worker could look forward to. Sugar was a necessity.

Why were the English the first to build factories to mill cloth? Because of the wealth they gained, the trade connections they made, and the banking systems they developed in the slave and sugar trade. Indeed, the cheap cloth from the factories was used to clothe the slaves. English factories, you might say, were built, run, and paid for by sugar.

In 1800, when the English were consuming their eighteen pounds of sugar a year, around 250,000 tons of sugar was produced worldwide—almost all sent to Europe. A century later, in 1900, when sugar was used in jams, cakes, syrups, and tea, and every modern country was filled with factories, world production of sugar reached six million tons. By that time, the average person in England ate ninety pounds of sugar a year—and in the early twentieth century, that number kept rising. (Americans today eat only about 40 pounds of cane sugar a year, but that is because other forms of sweeteners, such as corn syrup, are now cheaper than cane sugar. If you consider all forms of sweetener, Americans eat an average of 140 pounds every year.)


The authors include details about how much sugar Americans consume to persuade readers that modern diets are unhealthy.

The authors include details about the changes in diets over time to inform readers about how sugar has transformed what we eat.

The authors include details about how much sugar people have eaten over time to entertain readers with surprising statistics.

The authors include details about American and British diets to persuade readers that eating habits now are healthier than they were in the past. 

The authors include details about how much sugar Americans consume to persuade readers that modern diets are unhealthy.

The authors include details about the changes in diets over time to inform readers about how sugar has transformed what we eat.

The authors include details about how much sugar people have eaten over time to entertain readers with surprising statistics.

The authors include details about American and British diets to persuade readers that eating habits now are healthier than they were in the past. 

400

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

You could date a great change in the world to a visit one Madame Villeneuve made to France in 1714. That year, Pauline, an enslaved woman from the Caribbean, arrived in France as the personal servant of her mistress. When Madame Villeneuve set off from the coast to visit Paris, she left Pauline in a convent. The young woman spent her time studying with the nuns and went so far in her training that she asked to become a nun herself and remain in the convent. The nuns agreed, which enraged Madame Villeneuve. She rushed to a judge, demanding to have her property back. Was Pauline a free woman, a bride of Christ, or an item to be bought, sold, and warehoused when she was not in use?

Twenty-three years earlier, King Louis XIV had issued a set of rules that defined slavery as legal in the French sugar islands. But when two slaves managed to reach France, he freed them—saying they became free "as soon as they [touched] the soil" of France. The judges sided with Pauline—she was real to them, human, not a piece of property. For Pauline's judges, as for King Louis, slavery far off across the seas was completely different from enslaved individuals in France.

Slave owners fought back, arguing that owners should be able to list their slaves as property when they arrived in France and take them with them when they left. Though most parts of France agreed to this, law­makers in Paris hesitated. Pierre Lemerre the Younger made the case for the slaves. "All men are equal," he insisted in 1716—exactly sixty years before the Declaration of Independence.

To say that "all men are equal" in 1716, when slavery was flourishing in every corner of the world and most eastern Europeans themselves were farmers who could be sold along with the land they worked, was like announcing that there was a new sun in the sky. In the Age of Sugar, when slavery was more brutal than ever before, the idea that all humans are equal began to spread—toppling kings, overturning governments, transforming the entire world.


How do the details in the passage support the central idea?

They compare the end of slavery in the French colonies with the end of slavery in other colonies.

They provide details about the final few years of slavery in Europe and its many colonies.

They provide examples of how laws and attitudes about equality changed in France.

They explain why enslaved people entered convents in an attempt to gain their freedom.

How do the details in the passage support the central idea?

They compare the end of slavery in the French colonies with the end of slavery in other colonies.

They provide details about the final few years of slavery in Europe and its many colonies.

They provide examples of how laws and attitudes about equality changed in France.

They explain why enslaved people entered convents in an attempt to gain their freedom.

400

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

As sugar planters fled from the revolution in Haiti, some moved to Cuba's Oriente Province, others to North America—to Louisiana. By the time the Haitian plantation owners and overseers reached New Orleans, abolitionists were pressing to end the African slave trade. The tragedy is that this movement to end slavery did nothing to improve conditions in Louisiana. In fact, the state that slaves called Lousy Anna was the very worst place for an African in America; it was the Caribbean all over again—a death sentence.

In every single American slave state, the population of enslaved people kept rising even after the slave trade was abolished. That was because enough enslaved children were born, lived, and grew to become adults. There was just one exception to this rule: Louisiana, where the native-born enslaved population kept dropping. Sugar was a killer.


Which words from the passage best support the authors' purpose?

revolution, improve, and rising

tragedy, death, and killer

moved, reached, and conditions

single, population, and children

Which words from the passage best support the authors' purpose?

revolution, improve, and rising

tragedy, death, and killer

moved, reached, and conditions

single, population, and children

500

Read the passage from the All Men Are Created Equal section of Sugar Changed the World.

To say that "all men are equal" in 1716, when slavery was flourishing in every corner of the world and most eastern Europeans themselves were farmers who could be sold along with the land they worked, was like announcing that there was a new sun in the sky. In the Age of Sugar, when slavery was more brutal than ever before, the idea that all humans are equal began to spread—toppling kings, overturning governments, transforming the entire world.

Sugar was the connection, the tie, between slavery and freedom. In order to create sugar, Europeans and colonists in the Americas destroyed Africans, turned them into objects. Just at that very same moment, Europeans—at home and across the Atlantic—decided that they could no longer stand being objects themselves. They each needed to vote, to speak out, to challenge the rules of crowned kings and royal princes. How could that be? Why did people keep speaking of equality while profiting from slaves? In fact, the global hunger for slave-grown sugar led directly to the end of slavery. Following the strand of sugar and slavery leads directly into the tumult of the Age of Revolutions. For in North America, then England, France, Haiti, and once again North America, the Age of Sugar brought about the great, final clash between freedom and slavery.

Read the passage from the Serfs and Sweetness section of Sugar Changed the World.

In the 1800s, the Russian czars controlled the largest empire in the world, and yet their land was caught in a kind of time warp. While the English were building factories, drinking tea, and organizing against the slave trade, the vast majority of Russians were serfs. Serfs were in a position very similar to slaves’—they could not choose where to live, they could not choose their work, and the person who owned their land and labor was free to punish and abuse them as he saw fit. In Russia, serfdom only finally ended in 1861, two years before Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.

Not only were Russian farms run on unfree labor, but they used very simple, old-fashioned methods of farming. Like the English back in the time of Henry III, all Russians aside from the very wealthy still lived in the Age of Honey—sugar was a luxury taken out only when special guests came to visit. Indeed, as late as 1894, when the average English person was eating close to ninety pounds of sugar a year, the average Russian used just eight pounds.

In one part of Russia, though, the nobles who owned the land were interested in trying out new tools, new equipment, and new ideas about how to improve the soil. This area was in the northern Ukraine just crossing into the Russian regions of Voronigh and Hurst. When word of the breakthrough in making sugar reached the landowners in that one more advanced part of Russia, they knew just what to do: plant beets.

Cane sugar had brought millions of Africans into slavery, then helped foster the movement to abolish the slave trade. In Cuba large-scale sugar planting began in the 1800s, brought by new owners interested in using modern technology. Some of these planters led the way in freeing Cuban slaves. Now beet sugar set an example of modern farming that helped convince Russian nobles that it was time to free their millions of serfs.


Which claim do both passages support?

New technology in the sugar trade was the key factor in ending involuntary servitude worldwide.

Economic demand for sugar was the most important factor in the endurance of servitude and serfdom.

Economic demand for sugar was the most important factor in ending servitude and serfdom worldwide.

New technology in the sugar trade made it possible for people to understand that humans are equal.

Which claim do both passages support?

New technology in the sugar trade was the key factor in ending involuntary servitude worldwide.

Economic demand for sugar was the most important factor in the endurance of servitude and serfdom.

Economic demand for sugar was the most important factor in ending servitude and serfdom worldwide.

New technology in the sugar trade made it possible for people to understand that humans are equal.

500

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

In every single American slave state, the population of enslaved people kept rising even after the slave trade was abolished. That was because enough enslaved children were born, lived, and grew to become adults. There was just one exception to this rule: Louisiana, where the native-born enslaved population kept dropping. Sugar was a killer.

Unlike the Caribbean, Louisiana has cold snaps. That put an additional pressure on the sugar harvest. Not only did the slaves need to harvest the cane in perfect rhythm with the grinding mills, but the entire crop had to be cut down between mid-October and December. This pace only increased when growers installed improved, steam-powered mills. People needed to work faster than the weather and to keep pace with machines.

What is the authors’ purpose in this passage?

to inform the reader that Louisiana had fewer enslaved people than other slave states did

to inform the reader that Louisiana's hot weather hastened the sugar harvest to a few months

to inform the reader that life for enslaved people improved when sugar mills became powered by steam

to inform the reader that Louisiana's short harvest season meant that enslaved people were cruelly overworked 

What is the authors’ purpose in this passage?

to inform the reader that Louisiana had fewer enslaved people than other slave states did

to inform the reader that Louisiana's hot weather hastened the sugar harvest to a few months

to inform the reader that life for enslaved people improved when sugar mills became powered by steam

to inform the reader that Louisiana's short harvest season meant that enslaved people were cruelly overworked 

500

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

Cane sugar had brought millions of Africans into slavery, then helped foster the movement to abolish the slave trade. In Cuba large-scale sugar planting began in the 1800s, brought by new owners interested in using modern technology. Some of these planters led the way in freeing Cuban slaves. Now beet sugar set an example of modern farming that helped convince Russian nobles that it was time to free their millions of serfs. And that is precisely where Marc's family story begins—with Nina's grandfather, the serf who bought his freedom from figuring out how to color beet sugar.


How does the evidence support the central idea that cane sugar helped lead to the abolition of slavery?

The evidence explains that modern technology triggered the shift from cane sugar to beet sugar.

The evidence reveals that sugar barons in Cuba and Russia freed enslaved people and serfs.

The evidence reveals that the author's family members were hardworking serfs on Russian farms.

The evidence details how the modern technologies were used for large-scale sugar planting.

How does the evidence support the central idea that cane sugar helped lead to the abolition of slavery?

The evidence explains that modern technology triggered the shift from cane sugar to beet sugar.

The evidence reveals that sugar barons in Cuba and Russia freed enslaved people and serfs.

The evidence reveals that the author's family members were hardworking serfs on Russian farms.

The evidence details how the modern technologies were used for large-scale sugar planting.

500

Read the passage from Sugar Changed the World.

We all crave sweetness, now more than ever since there are so many ways to satisfy that need. And there are still sugar plantations where the work is brutal. In places like the Dominican Republic (Haiti's island neighbor), some sugar work is not very different from what it was for Marina's Indian ancestors in British Guiana: hard, poorly paid labor by people who are often mistreated. But for most of us, chemists have more to say about how we satisfy that taste than do overseers. When sugar is in the headlines, critics speak about how much of it we eat, not who picked the crop. Doctors warn that young people are gaining too much weight from eating sugary snacks; parents learn that kids who drink too many sweet sodas can cycle between manic sugar "highs" and grinding sugar "crashes." No one worries about where the sweetness comes from. Our diet was transformed by the Age of Sugar, but that era is over.

Which statement is the most objective summary of the passage?

Craving sweetness leads to developing poor habits around food.

New sources of sweetness use better techniques than the old sources did.

Chemists conduct work that is not interesting to much of the public.

Sugar cane is no longer the main source of sweetness for most people.

Which statement is the most objective summary of the passage?

Craving sweetness leads to developing poor habits around food.

New sources of sweetness use better techniques than the old sources did.

Chemists conduct work that is not interesting to much of the public.

Sugar cane is no longer the main source of sweetness for most people.

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