Test

Question Type 8: Moving a Letter

Eleven-Plus Preparation Specialists

This question type relies on your vocabulary principally, with some logic to be applied as well. If you follow a process, you should be able to make your way through these questions without worrying.

What does this question type involve?

This question type will give you two words. You will have to choose one letter and move it from the word on the left to the word on the right. You have to do this in such a way that you form two new words. However, bear in mind that you can’t rearrange the letters. That makes the process much simpler, as you can spot the answer more easily.

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Example questions

You are provided with:

Trace, rod

Answer: Move the T across to form two new words, race and trod.

You are provided with:

Elope, bat

Answer: Move the E across to form two new words, lope and beat. 

A Simple Approach: MAC: Move through, Apply logically, Check

The key to finding the letter that you need to move across quickly is focusing on one word, not both. Think about it like this – you know that you have to move one letter from the first word across to somewhere in the second word. However, you also know that moving that letter makes a new word from the first word. Therefore, to simplify the process, focus on that first new word. Forget about the second. Cross out each letter in turn, either mentally or with a pencil, and move across each letter in the first word until you make a new word. You might also form multiple new words.

When you have a new word, then you know which letter you will almost certainly be using in the second word. It’s now time to apply the letter to the second word. In a similar way to how you worked through the first word, add the letter to each point of the second word in turn, until you find a word that works. If you have formed multiple new words in the first part, and are therefore choosing from multiple letters when applying to the second word, choose the letter that is most likely to create a new word. Typically, this means L, R, S, H or the letters at the start or end of the word.

Now, go back and check your answer. Ensure that you’ve made two words, and quickly glance across both in case there was something that you missed when you first went through.

Worked Example

You are provided with:

Flake, band

Here, our first step is to work through the first word and take out each letter in turn to see if we can make a new word. However, we’ll quickly find that taking out the very first letter works – as that would make the word lake. Let’s quickly check through the rest of the word nonetheless. We therefore find that we can also remove the letter ‘l’ works, as that forms the word fake. Indeed, removing the ‘e’ works too, as that forms the word ‘flak.’

So, we now need to pick a letter and apply it to the second word. Let’s think logically – the most likely letter to add here is probably L. Adding an F to the word ‘band’ seems unlikely, as does E. So, let’s try adding the L. Adding it at the start doesn’t work, but adding it after the B creates the word ‘bland.’

Great! Now, let’s double check our answer. We find that both words work, and that – as we thought – adding F or E doesn’t make sense from another glance. 

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Top Tricks

There are few tricks here – you just need to follow the process and work through logically. Look out for letters that can be commonly added to another word, like L, S, R, or H.

Common Pitfalls

The most obvious mistake to make is taking a letter from the first word that works, but won’t work for the second word – as you didn’t work through the whole word logically.  

Summary

In conclusion, your goal here should be to follow the simple three step process of moving across the first word, logically choosing a letter and applying it to the second word, then checking your answer again at the end.
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