Read the text and for questions 1 to 7 say if the sentences are true or false.

 

Growing up poor

 

My name is Mike, and I was born in a very poor neighbourhood in Los Angeles. When I was little my mother took care of my brother and me, because my father left before I came to this world, and he wasn’t too interested in being a part of our lives. My mother had to work two jobs which didn’t pay much; she had to work very hard so that we could have food, clothes and a place to live. She was great; we really loved her and appreciated her efforts.

Every day, she usually arrived home very late and she was very tired, but she always cooked nice meals for us, and played with us, and she made sure that we did our homework. She always insisted on how important it was to get a good education. She couldn’t finish school because she got pregnant of me when she was just a teenager. “I couldn’t finish school, and that’s why I must work so hard now, and I earn so little money,” she often said.

Children were very violent in my neighbourhood. The truth is that you needed to be violent if you wanted to survive, and there were lots of crime and vandalism, and drugs. It was difficult to be a good student for children who lived in our neighbourhood. The other children at school hated you if you got good grades, so I wasn’t very popular. The only positive thing about living in that place is that you needed to be very clever to survive, and that helped me later in life.

Finally, my brother and I could finish high school, and I went to university because I was a very good basketball player, and basketball paid for my university degree. The day of my graduation my mother was in tears. And she was in tears again the day I showed her our new apartment, away from the neighbourhood. Do you know how difficult it is to get out of a poor neighbourhood? It’s very, very hard, but I did it, and it was thanks to my mum. Now she doesn’t have to work too jobs any more, and I take care of her.

 

Take the reading test

1Mike didn’t know his father.
a.  
b.  

Question 1 of 7

2His mother didn’t have enough money to buy food.
a.  
b.  

Question 2 of 7

3She didn’t finish school because she had Mike.
a.  
b.  

Question 3 of 7

4Mike took drugs.
a.  
b.  

Question 4 of 7

5He got good grades at school.
a.  
b.  

Question 5 of 7

6He thinks living in his neighbourhood was very positive.
a.  
b.  

Question 6 of 7

7He isn’t living with his mother at the moment.
a.  
b.  

Question 7 of 7