The Littles: The "Double Whammy"

As the word in the photo above indicates - I want all of my students to EMERGE with their best scores after this week's ACT test. Weathervane Prep sends out 'The Littles', which are little hints to help you on the ACT and/or SAT. Today's 'Little' is all about getting you ready for the ACT.

As we approach the February 10, 2018 ACT test, here's a little hint regarding what I like to call the "Double Whammy".


Here is an example from the free 2005-06 ACT test:

The Navajo language is complex, with a structure and sounds that makes them unintelligible to anyone without extensive exposure to it.

Your answer choices are:
A. makes them
B. makes it
C. make it
D. make them


The "Double Whammy" is a subject/verb agreement and pronoun/antecedent agreement question - all in the same question. (Hence the term "Double Whammy.") Makes or make is the verb that must agree in number with a subject. Them or it is a pronoun that must agree in number with an antecedent (something earlier in the text.) A student's first response is that makes must refer to Navajo language. WRONG! Navajo language has its own verb already - IS. Makes or make actually refers to the subject 'structure and sounds', which is plural. (Think "they make") Them or it refers to Navajo language, which is singular. The correct answer, you ask? C. MAKE IT.

Hope you get to use that awesome "Little" - and good luck on Saturday!