English reading comprehension

Reading comprehension exercises


Advanced EFL / ESL
Comprehension, grammar and vocabulary: exercise and classroom activity index, listed by type of exercise or activity or grammar point.

   A thematic index of exercises and classroom activities for use with advanced English articles on Linguapress.com  -  median level C1.

Linguapress Advanced reading texts come with exercises and activities designed to prepare students for the Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) and Proficiency (CPE) exams, and other advanced English tests (baccalaureates, PTE Academic, ELSA and others). This index is not exhaustive, and most Linguapress reading texts are accompnied by several exercises and activity suggestions in different categories.

What are you looking for? 1. Comprehension exercises 3. Grammar exercises
2. Expression - oral & written activities 4. Vocabulary exercises

Interactive worksheets / exercises. To save a completed worksheet that has been filled in on a computer or phone, use the print or print to file option of your browser after the answers have been written, and print or save the pages required – or else take (and save) a screenshot.

To explore different classroom comprehension activities, see Reading comprehension techniques for EFL / ESL

Texts accompanied by general comprehension exercises

General comprehension exercises, based on the text.
For cloze (gap-fill) exercises, jump to Words and vocabulary exercises below

Comprehension - listening

Comprehension : sequencing events 

Comprehension - careful reading for information

  • The Queen who almost wsn't - with audio  Complete  sentences using information from the text, and providing the number of words indicated
  • Nevada and its Extraterrestrials Find the 20 cases where the information in the resumé of the article does not correctly reflect what was written in the original. Covers vocabulary and factual information.
  • Deserts of America. Parallel text : Underline all the cases where the information given is not the same as the information in the original article.
  • Pubs and their signs Read the article and write down five things that you have learned about British pubs.
  • Guy Fawkes and Bonfire Night :  Interactive  Text correction (correctable onscreen): Correct 20 mistakes of grammar and vocabulary
  • Smugglers  Interactive  Text correction (correctable onscreen): Correct the mistakes in this badly copied extract from the article.
  • Tea and the British : with audio Text comparison : Find the ten factual mistakes in this summary of the article

Reusing information : Creative or descriptive writing

2. Texts accompanied by free expression - writing / speaking - activities

See also creative writing exercises above.


  • College sport USA. - Rephrase a complex sentence, using the framework given
  • Thanksgiving   with audio  -  Interactive  Rephrase sentences, starting with the prompt given:

Question forming:

  • America's Amish - Imagine an interview with Johan, using the question words indicated
  • Crime time basketball -  Rearrange the words to make questions that relate to the article
  • For Elise - a short story -  with audio  An investigative journalist from New York came to interview Coke Bucknil about the story of Elise Toussaint. Here are the answers to his questions; what were the questions?
  • Hillary Clinton - the early years . Form questions from the answers given.
  • Orson Welles : Fictitious interview with Orson Welles: what were your questions ?
  • Short story - Blue Gum Tree : with audio Police interview. Here are the answers, what were the questions ?
  • Short Story - Lucky Jim  : Interactive  Here are the answers, what were the questions ?
  • Short story - The Car with audio Interactive  Police interview. Here are the answers, what were the questions ?
  • Steaming on the Mississippi.    with audio Interactive  Make up  questions to which this article provides the answers, using the prompt words given
  • Thanksgivingwith audio Interactive Form questions starting with specific question words, to which the article provides the answer
  • Thinking it over with baby.    with audio Interactive  Make up  questions using the words provided, then answer them

Sentence building

  • The Mormons - Make up one correctly structured sentence from each of the groups of words below.
  • Tolkien & the Hobbit: Interactive Complete sentences using information from the text.


  • Short story - A suitable jobInteractive Write a short sentence (at least ten words) to characterise each of these characters mentioned in the story.
  • Rodeo - two exercises to explore the question of style

Text contraction:

Role play activities, oral expression:

3. Texts with exercises featuring specific grammar points:

Article use

  • Pubs and their signs  Interactive Complete an extract from the text, adding articles where necessary.
  • Thanksgivingwith audio  Interactive Choose the correct article frolm the multiple choice dropdown lists
  • Skyscrapers . Interactive Put in the definite articles in an extract from the text, but only when they are needed.
Nouns and adjectives
  • Skiing in the wind :  explain the meaning of the many compound nouns used in the article.
  • California's Water Wars - Memory and logic - complete an extract from the text, using the qualifiers (adjectives, etc.) listed.
  • Nevada and its Extraterrestrials  Interactive Replace all the missing prepositions and adverbs in this extract from the article.
  • The story of Ellis Island  with audio Complete these sentences with the appropriate prepositions   
  • America's Amish - Interactive Replace all the missing prepositions in this extract from the article.
  • Save the Everglades - Replace all the missing prepositions in this extract from the article.
  • Smugglers  Interactive   Replace all the missing prepositions in this extract from the article  .

Prepositional and phrasal verbs

  • Rodeo : Have students pick out and explain the phrasal/prepositional verbs used.
  • Woody Guthrie - Match the prepositional verbs listed with their meanings.

Relative pronouns

  • All you need is love - Interactive Replace the missing relatives (that, which, who, whom,) or nominal relatives ( what, how) in this extract
  • The Mormons - Interactive  Replace the missing relative pronoun in these sentences: (which, what or whose?)

Time clauses:

Verbs :  participles, tenses, voice

Verbs : modals and auxiliaries

  • Henry Ford with audio  Interactive Blank-fill  - Replace missing modal verbs or auxiliaries in extracts from the article
  • John Lennon  Interactive Blank-fill  - Replace missing modal verbs or auxiliaries in these extracts from the article

4. Texts with words and vocabulary exercises

Vocabulary exercises : general – including  cloze (gap-fill) exercises and word formation exercises

Vocabulary - multiple choice exercises (including multiple choice cloze exercises)

Vocabulary : words and meaning

Vocabulary : Synonyms and antonyms

Word endings - word formation

Word search

Word order

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A thematic and task-based index of exercises and activities suggested for using advanced reading texts from the Linguapress archive with students in the classroom .
  As well as allowing teachers to find a text in function of the activity or grammar point they wish to use in class, this index highlights the great wealth and diversity of ways to use written texts in the language class.
  The exercises and activities listed in the index are already prepared and available for use with the articles indicated. However many of them can be easily adapted for use with other articles.

For more ideas see Working with written texts in the English class


Reading resources in graded English from Linguapress
A choice of other pages from Linguapress.
Intermediate resources :
Charlie Chaplin & the Little Tramp
The car of the future?  (with audio)
Discussion : Are you a brand slave?
The Beatles, in easy English
Who is James Bond ?
USA: Who was Buffalo Bill?
USA: Close encounters with a Twister  
More: More intermediate reading texts  
Advanced level reading :
Charles Babbage, the father of the computer
Agatha Christie - the world's best-selling author
Who killed Martin Luther King?
The story of the jet plane
Tolkien - the man who gave us the Hobbit
More: More advanced reading texts  
Selected grammar pages
Verbs in English
Noun groups in English
Word order in English
Reported questions in English
Word stress in English
The short story of English
Ideas for teachers

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