Reading Comprehension Quiz

Use the dictionary, the acronym finder, and the word origins dictionary (links above) as needed. A new quiz is available each Monday through Thursday. This is the quiz for April 7.

In 1920, Robert Goddard, a physics professor at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., published an article on an outrageous topic, rocket travel. Unlike most of his colleagues, Goddard believed rocketry was a viable technology, and his paper, primly titled "A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes," was designed to prove it. For the lay reader, there wasn't much in the writing to excite interest, but at the end, the buttoned-up professor unbuttoned a bit. If you used his technology to build a rocket big enough, he argued, and if you primed it with fuel that was powerful enough, you just might be able to reach the moon with it.

When the New York Times saw the article, it pounced. As anyone knew, the paper explained with an editorial eye roll, space travel was impossible, since without atmosphere to push against, a rocket could not move so much as an inch. Professor Goddard, it was clear, lacked "the knowledge ladled out daily in high schools."

1. Robert Goddard was
A. a government worker.
B. a high school teacher.
C. a physicist.
D. an editorial writer.
2. This article portrays Goddard as
A. a reserved person.
B. a dashing adventurer.
C. a foolish person.
D. an unrealistic thinker.
3. The New York Times was
A. complimentary.
B. scornful.
C. angry.
D. ahead of its time.
4. The word "viable" in this context means
A. living and breathing.
B. can be put on the road.
C. capable of being done.
D. current.

The information comes from an article by Jeffrey Kluger at Time Magazine 100 Most Important People of the Century.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

Answer Key: 1-C..........2-A..........3-B..........4-C
Corrections? Questions? Comments? E-mail Robert Jackson at