This worksheet supports Common Core State Standard CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.9 and CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.9

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Compare and Contrast (Grades 11-12)

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Compare and Contrast

Recently, I was invited to travel to the Pacific Northwest and spend several weeks visiting my Aunt Christina and Uncle Samuel, native Oregonians, so, for days, I contemplated the best method of transportation: passenger train or jet plane. I compared a number of relevant factors, including travel time, ticket prices, and general comfort. After compiling the information, I gave a great deal of thought to the overall travel experience itself since I would be traveling across the entire breadth of the country, literally journeying from the east coast to the west. It was thousands of miles, mostly into parts of the nation I had never seen before, so I wanted to make a wise, educated decision.

The airplane was certainly the faster of the two choices, as it would take only four hours for me to traverse the length of the country if flying, while the train would take me four days. Not surprisingly, this shorter trip also meant the tickets to fly cost substantially less than those to ride. Both the plane and train were comfortable; they had plush seats and head rests, but at least on the train, if I got restless or tired of the trip, I could easily get up and walk around. Instead of a typical bag of peanuts and an expensive beverage, trains also offered dining cars with full, delicious meals.

Perhaps the biggest factor contributing to my final decision, however, was the vast panorama of scenery I would see passing by outside the train window, as compared to the view from the airplane. While I was eager to experience every element of the Pacific Northwest my relatives wanted to share with me, I was equally enthusiastic about observing the various terrains between the two coasts, including mountain ranges, coast lines, and forests full of pine trees. The debate finally came to an end; I was taking the train across the country so it was time for “All aboard!”
What travel factor did both methods of transportation share?
  1. The food offered during the journey
  2. The time spent during travel
  3. The opportunity to see the country
  4. The cost of the tickets
What factor convinced the narrator to choose the train?
  1. The length of the journey
  2. The scenery during the trip
  3. The comfort of the ride
  4. The time spent in travel
Which question was the narrator of the story trying to answer?
  1. How long does it take to cross from one coast to the other?
  2. What are the best things to do while in the Pacific Northwest?
  3. What is the best way to travel across the entire country?
  4. Why do people tend to take planes more often than trains?
As the influence and pervasiveness of the Internet continues to expand throughout the world, it is little surprise that it has made great strides in the world of education. According to studies reported at Ed Tech, between 1998 and 2008, there was a 150 percent increase in the number of students choosing to take distance-learning courses as part of their college curriculum. Going online to take a class is becoming more and more common. The reasons for it are often quite obvious.

Online classes offer 24/7 accessibility, which permits flexibility that in-class education simply cannot provide. It gives students the opportunity to fit their education around their work schedules, and family demands, rather than the other way around. Online education tailors itself to a student's individual learning pace as well, allowing people to go back and re-read or re-watch a lecture, skip forward over familiar material, or pause to think and ensure comprehension. Finally, online education typically costs a fraction of what traditional classes cost. This makes it possible for a wider variety of students to enroll in a program.

Of course, traditional education still does have some benefits that cannot be found in distance-learning. Sitting in class gives students the chance to ask questions while face-to-face with instructors. It also allows for social interaction with classmates. Additionally, some types of information simply require hands-on instruction, especially for trade or technical skills.
Why would traditional education be more appealing to the social student?
  1. It offers more hands-on instruction.
  2. It costs far less than distance learning.
  3. It features trade and technical skills.
  4. It provides the chance for interaction.
What is the primary difference between online and in person classes?
  1. The quality of education
  2. The variety of majors
  3. The accessibility of classes
  4. The number of instructors
What do distance-learning and traditional learning have in common?
  1. Both can be used for a variety of college majors.
  2. Both feature the chance to see instructors in person.
  3. Both cost almost the same amount for classes.
  4. Both are based on the individual student's learning styles.

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