The superficial meaning is represented by the tip of the iceberg while the underlying meaning is represented by the submerged part of the iceberg.
Often, students would explain the superficial meaning of the phrase and neglect its deeper underlying meaning.
To explain phrases in the context of the comprehension passage, your child has to:
1. Explain the choice of words = superficial meaning
2. Explain how they fit in the context = deeper meaning
The 2-Step Approach
For instance, 想到妈妈为他付出的一切，他顿时泪如泉涌。
Step 1: Explain the superficial meaning
Step 2: Explain the deeper meaning
He was touched by the sacrifices his mother had made for him.
Crying is a release of emotions. There are many reasons why a person cries. It can be that he feels wronged (委屈/冤枉), angry (愤怒), upset (难过), disappointed (失望) and so on. In this case, the author was touched.
Combine 1) and 2):
作者想到妈妈为他付出的一切，非常感动 (1 分)，于是哭了起来 (1 分)。
Touched by the sacrifices his mother had made for him, the author cried.
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