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 March 10.**

In 1907 Leo Baekeland made the laboratory breakthrough that would change the stuff our world is made of.

Starting around 1904 he started searching for a synthetic substitute for shellac. Three years later he developed a material that he called Bakelite. Cooked lightly, it was like shellac, but with further heat and pressure it became hard, translucent, and moldable - in a word, plastic, which could be fashioned into knobs, buttons, knife handles, and all manner of items.

In 1945, a year after Baekeland died, annual plastic production in the U.S. reached more than 400,000 tons. In 1979, the annual volume of plastic overtook that of steel. Recently, nearly 47 million tons of plastic were produced.

1. Baekeland started searching for a substitute for
A. Bakelite.
B. plastic.
C. shellac.
D. steel.
2. Baekeland is the originator of
A. shellac.
B. plastics.
C. synthetic substances.
D. steel.
3. A synthetic is
A. a plastic.
B. Bakelite.
C. a shellac.
D. a substance made artificially by chemical reactions.
4. Current plastic production is
A. 400,000 tons per year.
B. almost as much as steel.
C. more than 100 times what it was in 1947.
D. in decline since 1947.
The information comes from an article by Ivan Amato at TIME - The Most Important People of the Century.
Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

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