Study Guide

Elementary Education (Grades 1–6)
Sample Multiple-Choice Questions

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Field 199: Science and Social Science (Grades 1–6)

Each multiple-choice question has four answer choices. Read each question and its answer choices carefully and choose the ONE best answer.

During the test you should try to answer all questions. Even if you are unsure of an answer, it is better to guess than not to answer a question at all. You will NOT be penalized for choosing an incorrect response.

Objective 0001
Understand the interrelationships among science, technology, and society.

1. Which of the following activities is most likely to promote students' understanding of the concept of cause and effect in science?

  1. using leaves and a taxonomic key to identify the types of trees present near the school
  2. recording the time it takes for bean seeds to germinate when given different amounts of water
  3. creating cross-sectional models of the Earth with clay to illustrate the thicknesses of different layers
  4. tracking the daily high and low temperatures of two nearby cities during a three month period
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: B.
A cause and effect relationship is a relationship in which one event results in the occurrence of another event. The only response option that addresses this type of relationship is the activity in which bean seeds are given different amounts of water (event 1) and students record the amount of time it takes for the seeds to germinate (event 2).

Objective 0001
Understand the interrelationships among science, technology, and society.

2. A second grade teacher is planning to read a book to the class as a way of introducing students to the variety of geographic features on Earth's surface. Which of the following types of books is likely to be most effective in stimulating students' interest in the subject matter?

  1. a book that explains the role of plate tectonics in the formation of mountains
  2. a biography of one of the first people to reach the summit of Mount Everest
  3. a book about a migrating bird that describes how the land below changes during its journey
  4. a field guide that describes the characteristics of mountains, canyons, deserts, and waterways
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: C.
The book about the migrating bird would be most effective in stimulating the interest of second graders in the different geographic features of Earth's surface. The story would build students' background knowledge of the subject and their vocabulary in an engaging way. It also would help students make connections between geographic features they are familiar with and those found in other parts of the world.

Objective 0002
Understand the use of scientific investigations and inquiry skills and apply principles and procedures, including safety practices, related to the design and implementation of scientific investigations.

3. Fourth-grade students have planted a garden at their school and find signs that an animal has eaten some of their vegetables. The students offer several ideas about what happened to their growing crops. Which of the following student statements represents a reasoned argument rather than a speculation?

  1. "Deer tracks are in the garden; deer likely ate our crops."
  2. "I saw a raccoon on the street earlier this week; a raccoon likely ate our crops."
  3. "A dog from a nearby house is allowed to run off leash; the dog likely ate our crops."
  4. "I read that rabbits like to eat vegetables; a rabbit likely ate our crops."
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: A.
Unlike speculation, reasoned arguments are supported by evidence. The response implicating the deer as the cause of the disappearance of the garden vegetables is the only argument that is supported by observable evidence: the presence of deer tracks in the garden.

Objective 0003
Understand the fundamental concepts, principles, and interconnections of the life sciences, the physical sciences, and Earth and space sciences.

4. Which of the following processes illustrates a conversion of potential energy to kinetic energy?

  1. the wind spins a turbine that is used to produce electricity
  2. the heat from an oven burner is transferred to the handle of a saucepan
  3. a green plant uses light from the sun to synthesize glucose
  4. a rock sitting at the top of a hill is dislodged and begins to roll downward
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: D.
Potential energy may be thought of as stored energy or energy that is associated with the position of an object. Kinetic energy is energy that is associated with motion. The stored energy in the rock (potential energy) is converted to energy of motion (kinetic energy) as the rock begins to roll downward from the top of the hill.

Objective 0003
Understand the fundamental concepts, principles, and interconnections of the life sciences, the physical sciences, and Earth and space sciences.

5. Students in a third grade class are using weather journals to collect and record temperature data for a variety of locations within Illinois, including Chicago. Students notice that in the fall and early winter average temperatures in Chicago are not as cold as those in the outlying cities. This geographic difference in temperature is best explained by:

  1. the seasonal effect of the polar jet stream in Illinois.
  2. the high specific heat capacity of the water of Lake Michigan.
  3. the increased exposure to solar energy associated with Chicago's latitudinal location.
  4. the decrease in elevation associated with land along the shores of Lake Michigan.
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: B.
Large bodies of water, like Lake Michigan, absorb heat and release heat at a slower rate than the surrounding land and air. This is due to the high specific heat capacity of water. As a result, locations near the lake are typically cooler in the summer and warmer in the fall and early winter before the lake freezes.

Objective 0004
Understand the structures and functions of government; the rights and responsibilities of citizenship in the United States; and the skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary for successful participation in civic life.

6. Which of the following excerpts from the Illinois Constitution would be most useful for an upper elementary teacher to use in examining with students the concept of due process?

  1. "The House of Representatives has the sole power to conduct legislative investigations to determine the existence of cause for impeachment and, by the vote of a majority of the members elected, to impeach Executive and Judicial officers."
  2. "The recall of the Governor may be proposed by a petition signed by a number of electors equal in number to at least 15% of the total votes cast for governor in the preceding gubernatorial election, with at least 100 signatures from each of at least 25 separate counties.… not more than 150 days after an affidavit has been filed with the State Board of Elections…"
  3. "No person shall be denied the right to register to vote or to cast a ballot in an election based on race, color, ethnicity, status as a member of a language minority, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or income."
  4. "In criminal prosecutions, the accused shall have the right to appear and defend in person and by counsel; to demand the nature and cause of the accusation and have a copy thereof; to be confronted with the witnesses against him or her and... to compel the attendance of witnesses in his or her behalf; and to have a speedy public trial..."
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: D.
Due process is defined as the constitutional guarantee that no person may be deprived of life, liberty, or property without fair legal proceedings. According to due process requirements, individuals must be given notice of legal proceedings and the opportunity to defend themselves and confront their accusers.

Objective 0005
Understand the interrelationships of economic and political principles, concepts, and systems and their relationship to historical and contemporary developments in Illinois, the United States, and the world.

7. Proponents of U.S. trade agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) are most likely to cite which of the following benefits as a reason for their support?

  1. lower consumer prices
  2. reduced competition for businesses
  3. lower cost of production resources
  4. reduced regulatory burdens
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: A.
Trade agreements between the United States and other countries are designed to encourage free trade by reducing or eliminating tariffs, quotas, and other governmental limitations on trade. Free trade allows each country to specialize in goods it can produce more efficiently and cheaply and without added costs from tariffs, all of which are likely to result in lower prices for consumers.

Objective 0005
Understand the interrelationships of economic and political principles, concepts, and systems and their relationship to historical and contemporary developments in Illinois, the United States, and the world.

8. An upper elementary teacher is preparing a series of lessons on the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the legal barriers to voting confronting African Americans before this legislation was enacted. Which of the following student activities would likely be most useful for deepening students' understanding of the meaning and significance of the Voting Rights Act?

  1. researching social, economic, and other differences between northern and southern states at the time the legislation passed
  2. reading and discussing excerpts from speeches and writing by individuals who fought for the legislation
  3. using age-appropriate resources to write an account of the steps and procedures that were used to draft and pass the legislation
  4. reviewing and analyzing those sections of the U.S. Constitution that are most relevant to the legislation
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: B.
Primary sources and eye-witness accounts are valuable sources of information about the perspectives, goals, and experiences of individuals involved in a historical event or era. The speeches and writings of people engaged in the debate over the Voting Rights Act of 1965 can provide a unique perspective on the issues that led to the creation of the act, the struggles involved in its passage, and the personal and social circumstances that influenced the individuals who supported it.

Objective 0006
Understand major principles, concepts, and phenomena of geography, sociology, and culture and the interrelationships between people and their environment.

9. Which of the following geographic questions focuses on a formal region rather than a functional or perceptual region?

  1. What patterns are evident in the distribution of ethnic groups within the city of Chicago, Illinois?
  2. How is the movement of a train station from one suburban town in Illinois to another expected to affect the two towns?
  3. In what areas of the Sunbelt have populations increased most rapidly over the past three decades?
  4. How did the natural resources found in various areas of the Midwestern United States influence the development of local economies?
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: A.
Formal regions are defined by the presence of shared traits that are found throughout the area and that distinguish them from surrounding areas. Examples include countries, states, and cities. The city of Chicago is a precisely bounded formal region defined by its uniformity of law and administration. The question in response A addresses information relevant to the area defined by that precise political boundary.

Objective 0006
Understand major principles, concepts, and phenomena of geography, sociology, and culture and the interrelationships between people and their environment.

10. In the early history of the United States, conflicts between Native American populations and European settlers most often focused on differences in cultural views and values related to:

  1. wealth and social status.
  2. the role of religion in society.
  3. land ownership and use.
  4. the concept of community.
Answer and Rationale
Correct Response: C.
Many factors contributed to the development of conflict between Native Americans and European settlers in the colonial period, including demands for food, livestock damage to Native American crops, and dishonest traders. But as European settlements grew, the European view of private land ownership increasingly deprived Native Americans of their access to crop lands and hunting grounds and eventually excluded many from their ancestral homelands. Europeans who failed to recognize Native Americans' communal perspectives on hunting grounds and unoccupied areas of land often perceived these ideas as a threat to their communities. The resulting tensions led to many conflicts.

References

Source for sample multiple-choice question #6: Constitution of the State of Illinois, adopted Dec. 15, 1970.