4 • Lesson 4 Word List


(adj) 1. Taking part; working.
Luis has been an active member of the chess club for two years.

2. Lively; quick; busy.
Even though she is over ninety, Dr. O’Brien still has a very active mind.

3. Moving a lot; moving quickly.
Because I’ve been more physically active, I can run around the track more easily.


(v) To surprise; to amaze.
The European Space Agency astounded the world in 2014 by landing a robot on a moving comet.

astounding (adj) Very surprising.
The report of flying saucers landing on the White House lawn would be astounding if it were true.


(v) 1. To go to or be present at.
If you are planning to attend the after-school party, please let Kwan know.

2. To pay attention to.
The judge asked the jury to attend carefully to what she was going to say.


(v) 1. To cling to an idea or feeling.
Ramona cherished the hope that her father would return soon.

2. To take good care of; to love.
I cherish the gold watch my grandfather gave me.


(v) 1. To make an agreement that has the force of law.
We contracted with carpenters to repair the stairs.

2. To get; to come to have.
When I contracted the flu, Dr. Robey told me I had to stay away from other people.

3. To make or become smaller.
By 1828, Cherokee lands had contracted to one-tenth the size they had been a hundred years earlier.

(n) An agreement that has the force of law.
Tom has just signed a contract to write a book.


(adj) Wanting very much.
We were eager to take part in the science project.

eagerly (adv) With a great deal of enthusiasm, wanting.
We eagerly awaited the arrival of our cousins, whom we hadn’t seen in several months.


(v) 1. To make known.
In her weekly newspaper column, Molly exposed the school’s plan to cut recess time.

2. To open to view.
Cleaning the painting exposed the original colors.

3. To leave unprotected.
Because I had no place to keep my bike, I had to leave it outside, exposed to the weather.


(n) 1. Beauty of form or movement.
Margot Fonteyn danced with such grace that she was hailed as one of the world’s greatest ballerinas.

2. A short prayer said before a meal.
They always say grace in her family.

3. An extra period to do or pay something.
The teacher gave us three days’ grace to finish the project.

graceful (adj) Having beauty of movement.
With a graceful leap, the cat landed on my lap.


(v) 1. To force someone to accept or put up with.
The new coach imposed strict rules about arriving late or leaving practice early.

2. To take unfair advantage of.
I try not to impose on my mother’s good nature.


(adj) 1. Not thinking too highly of oneself.
Nadia was too modest to accept all the credit for her part in writing the play.

2. Simple; not fancy or extreme.
The Wallmans lived in the same modest apartment all their lives.

modesty (n) The quality of being modest.
My sense of modesty keeps me from taking too much credit for the project’s success.


(adj) Lying in the same direction and always the same distance apart.
The two edges of a ruler are parallel.


(v) 1. To stop all movement or feeling in.
As the huge wave approached, fear paralyzed people walking at the water’s edge, and they stood there motionless.

2. To make helpless or powerless.
The snowstorm paralyzed Washington, D.C., for five days.

paralysis (n) Condition of being paralyzed.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt used a wheelchair because of the paralysis in his legs.


(n) A person who expects things to turn out badly.
A pessimist carries an umbrella even though the forecast is for fine weather.

pessimistic (adj) Not having hope, joy, or confidence; gloomy.
After losing her job, Ms. Ramirez was pessimistic about finding another job soon.


(v) To say aloud before an audience, usually from memory.
Rozzie recited her favorite Emily Dickinson poem to the class.

recital (n) A program of music or dance.
I felt very nervous before my ballet recital.


(v) To answer.
When you want to respond to a question, please raise your hand.

response (n) Something said or done in reply.
Henry took a few moments to think before giving his response to Mr. Bartlett’s question.


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