WHAT FEAR CAN TEACH US CommonLit Answers 2024 [Free]

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Find the answer key for the topic “WHAT FEAR CAN TEACH US” below:

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WHAT FEAR CAN TEACH US CommonLit Answers key

Discussion Questions & Answers

Following are our answers based on the questions provided:

Q.1. In what ways do our fears prepare or fail to prepare us for future events? How much do you agree with Walker’s argument about the effects and the value of fear? When might fear negatively impact a person’s decisions?
Ans: Karen Thompson claims that fear can really guide us and instead of calling it fear we should call it stories, we are readers and authors of our fears. Karen Thompson Walker one of the best-selling authors of “What Fear Can Teach Us” stated that fear can really help us to prepare for future events and makes us calmer if we work to hear our fear. She claims that the right kind of fear can help to improve our imagination, she says that a person must learn to reflect on their fears rather than react, every fear teaches us something. Karen wants us to ask this question: What this fear is teaching me? and we have half conquered our fear.
Karen Thompson Walker proposes that fear is not necessarily a problem or a feeling that we should get rid of as soon as possible, instead fear can help us learn by preparing us for the future. we should not let that fear control us, and if we take control of fear we might be prepared for the difficulties that the future might present to us.
When might fear negatively impact a person’s decision? when we overthink too much, putting too much pressure on ourselves to make the perfect decision and to look at the situation from every conceivable angle. Fear can cause us to put off or avoid some decisions, which often results in lost options and worse decisions, not better.

Q.2. When have you feared something that was unlikely to happen? How did it influence your actions? How does it feel now to look back on the fear you experienced?
Ans.1: People fear things that are unlikely to happen all the time. The abnormal fear of something is a phobia. People fear things that give them anxiety or that they have seen or thought of before. When I am fearing something I am always more cautious, and my heart rate spikes.
Ans.2: I fear that something will go wrong or bad when I give a short presentation. This made me not tell the teacher that I was going to present so I had to go after school and present my presentation only in front of my teacher instead of at the entire class. Looking back I feel like it was not a very big deal and that I should have said something because nothing bad really happened.

Q.3. In the context of the speech, how does fear drive action? How are people influenced by fear when making important decisions? What types of fears are they more likely to listen to? Cite evidence from this text, your own experience, and other literature, art, or history in your answer.
Ans: Fear can drive action in different ways. On one hand, fear can give us confidence and motivate us to take action. For example, if we see someone accomplishing something impressive or admirable, we might feel inspired and think, “I want to be like that too, so I will try.” In this case, fear acts as a catalyst for action by pushing us to overcome our fears and strive for success.
On the other hand, fear can also negatively affect our confidence and decision-making. When we are afraid, we may become hesitant, doubtful, or even paralyzed by our fears. This can prevent us from taking necessary actions or making important decisions. For instance, if we are afraid of failure or rejection, we might avoid pursuing opportunities or taking risks, which can hinder our personal growth and success.
When it comes to influencing people’s decisions, certain types of fears are more likely to have an impact. One example mentioned in the answer is “jump scares.” Jump scares are a common technique used in horror movies or thrillers to startle or frighten the audience. These sudden and intense moments of fear can grab people’s attention and make them more receptive to the message or information being conveyed. In this case, fear is used as a tool to captivate and influence the audience’s emotions and actions.


Assessment Questions & Answers

Following are our answers based on the questions provided:

Q.1. PART A: Which of the following best identifies a central idea of the text?
Ans: Fears operate through the imagination much like storytelling does, and we can learn from our fears just as we can learn from stories.

Q.2. PART B: Which quote from the text best supports the answer to Part A?
Ans: “Terrified of cannibals, they decided to forgo the closest islands and instead embarked on the longer and much more difficult route to South America.” (Paragraph 9)

Q.3. PART A: Which of the following statements best describes how fear impacted the Essex sailors’ decision to sail south, according to the text?
Ans: The sailors’ fear of cannibalism overshadowed their sound judgment, so they refused to sail to nearby islands.

Q.4. PART B: Which quote from the text best supports the answer to Part A?
Ans: “perhaps if they’d been able to read their fears more like a scientist, with more coolness of judgment, they would have listened instead to the less violent but the more likely tale, the story of starvation” (paragraph 10)

Q.5. How does paragraph 3 contribute to the author’s argument?
Ans: Paragraph 3 contributes to the author’s argument by introducing the idea that fear is not just a negative emotion to be overcome, but rather a powerful tool of the imagination that can be as profound and insightful as storytelling itself.
In this paragraph, the author challenges the conventional view of fear as something to be conquered or overcome. Instead, she suggests that fear should be seen as an act of the imagination, equating it to the process of storytelling. This sets the stage for her later arguments about the role of fear in decision-making and its potential positive effects. By reframing fear in this way, she invites readers to reconsider their own perceptions of fear and to recognize its potential value.


You can find answer keys for other grades here:

=> CommonLit Answer Key For Students


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In CommonLit, “WHAT FEAR CAN TEACH US” is one of the students’ favorite articles authored by Karen Thompson Walker for grade 11 students.


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