NBSE Class-10| Alternative English Grammar Reading

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In This chapter NBSE Class-10| Alternative English Grammar Reading. which is a part of the class 10 syllabus of Alternative English for students studying under Nagaland Board of School Education:

NBSE Class-10| Alternative English Grammar Reading

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EXERCISE

1.1.Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

The bowls never wanted washing. The boys polished them with their spoons till they shone again; and when they had performed this operation (which never took very long, the spoons being nearly as large as the bowls), they would sit staring at the copper, with such eager eyes, as if they could have devoured the very bricks of which it was composed; employing themselves, meanwhile, in sucking their fin- gers most assiduously, with the view of catching up any stray splashes of gruel that might have been cast thereon. Boys have generally excellent appetites.

Oliver Twist and his companions suffered the tortures of slow starvation for three months: atlas they got so vora- cious and wild with hunger, that one boy hinted darkly to his companions, that unless he had another basin of gruel per diem, he was afraid he might some night happen to eat the boy who slept next him. He had a wild, hungry eye; and they implicitly believed him. A council was held; lots were cast who should walk up to the master after supper that evening and ask for more; it fell to Oliver Twist.

The evening arrived; the boys took their places. The master, in his cook’s uniform, stationed himself at the copper; his pauper assistants ranged themselves behind him; the gruel was served out. The gruel disappeared; the boys whispered to each other, and winked at Oliver. Child as he was, he was desperate with hunger, and reckless with misery. He rose from the table; and advancing to the master, basin and spoon in hand, said, somewhat alarmed at his own temerity:

“Please, sir, I want some more.”

The master, a fat, healthy man, turned very pale. He gazed in stupefied astonishment at the small rebel for some seconds, and then clung to the copper for support. The assistants were paralysed with wonder; the boys with fear. “What!” said the master at length, in a faint voice (Extracted from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist).

assiduously :working hard with attention to detail 

per diem: for each day

temerity: to say something that shocks others

1.Explain why ‘the bowls never wanted washing’.

Ans. The bowls never wanted washing because the boys polished them with their spoon till they shone again.. 

2. Why did the boys stare ‘at the copper’?

Ans. The boys stared at the copper’ with the view of catch- ing up any stray splashes of gruel that might have been cast thereon.

3. What made the boys believe the threat of one of the boys?

Ans. One of the boys declared that he might eat the boy who slept next him. The boys believed the threat of that boy because he had wild hungry eyes.

4. What was the reason for ‘a council’?

Ans. ‘A council’ was held because the boys wanted to ask the master for more food. 

5. Why do you think the boys whispered to each other and winked at Oliver?

Ans. The boys whispered to each other and winked at oliver because he was the one selected for talking to the master to give them more food.

6. Pick out two reasons why Oliver asked for more.

Ans. Oliver asked for more food because he was desperate with hunger and reckless with misery.

7. Why do you think the master turned pale?

Ans. The master turned pale because he had never expected that any boy would ask for more food.

8. Pick out two responses (other than the master’s) to Oliver asking for more. 

Ans. When Oliver asked for more food the assistants were paralysed with wonder and the boys were paralysed with fear.

9. Choose a word from the passage that is closest  in meaning to:

wanting or devouring great quantities of food

Ans. Voracious.

10. Find a word and make a sentence with the word that means: 

unquestioningly and absolutely

Ans. Implicitly → Boys must follow my command implicity 

II. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

 “Then you know practically nothing about my aunt?” asked the confident young girl. “Only her name and address,” admitted the new neighbour, Mr Frampton. “Her great tragedy happened just three years ago,” said the child. “Her tragedy?” asked Frampton. “You may wonder why we keep that window wide open on an October afternoon,” said the girl, indicating a large French window that opened on to a

lawn. “Out through that window, three years ago, her husband, her two young brothers and their dog went shooting. They were all swallowed up in a swamp. Poor aunt always thinks that they will come back some day. Some- times on still evenings like this, I get a creepy feeling they will walk in through that window…” She broke off with a shudder. It was a relief to Frampton when the aunt bustled in.

“I hope you don’t mind the open window,” said Mrs Sappleton briskly, “my husband and brothers will be home directly from shooting.” Frampton shivered. He saw Mrs Sappleton’s niece was staring out through the open window in dazed horror. In the twilight, three figures and a dog were walking towards the window. Frampton grabbed wildly at his stick and hat and ran out of the hall door.

“A most extraordinary man,” said Mrs Sappleton, “dashed off without a word of goodbye or apology. One would think he had seen a ghost.” “I expect it was the spaniel,” said the niece calmly, “he told me he had a horror of dogs. He was once hunted into a cemetery by a pack of stray dogs, and had to spend the night in a newly dug grave. Enough to make anyone lose their nerve.”

(Adapted from Saki’s The Open Window)

1. What do you learn about Mr Frampton from the opening paragraph?

Ans. From the opening paragraph we learn about Mr. Framton that he knows only the name and address of the young girl’s aunt.

2. Why was Mr Frampton relieved to see the girl’s aunt?

Ans. The girl had created a creepy feeling in Mr. Framton’s heart. He wanted to recover from it. So, he was relieved to see the girl’s aunt.

3. Why was Frampton horrified when Mrs Sappleton told him about her husband and her brothers?

Ans. The young girl had told Mr. Framton that her aunt’s husband, her two brothers, and their dog were dead. But she still expected them to come back some day. So, Mr. Framton was horrified when Mrs. Sappleton told him about her husband and her brothers.

4. What is the significance of the line, ‘One would think he had seen a ghost?

Ans. The significance of the line is that Mr. Framton really imagined that the ghosts of Mrs. Sappleton’s husband, her brothers and their dog were walking towards the window. So, he took his stick, his hat and

ran out of the hall door.

5. Find a word from the passage which means the same as caught hold of something tightly. 

Make a sentence with the word.

Ans. Grabbed → He grabbed the stick in his hand. 

III. Read the passage below and answer the questions that follow. 

Do extra-terrestrial creatures exist? Non-believers say that aliens, like magic, monsters and ghosts are only figments of our imagination-pure science fiction.

I have always had a fascination for these creatures, whether real or not. By looking into aliens and their habits we can begin to understand the reason for the interest. 

The average alien comes in three types. First, there is the insectoid a multi limbed, bug-eyed, praying mantis-like creature. Secondly, there is the reptilian variety, which has something of a prehistoric appearance. But by far the most common is the humanoid alien a grayish blue or green, short and skinny creature with a huge bulbous head and large eyes. This alien type has no hair, no ears, no nose and only a slit for a mouth.

Over the past few years people have sighted ‘the crop circle. Aliens are said to make these huge circles as they land their spaceships. Are these just young aliens out for at joyride or do these markings have a deeper meaning? It is said that people are beamed up into spaceships and put through rigorous medical tests and experiments. They are then sent back to Earth to live normal lives and to earn lots of money by selling their stories to newspapers and magazines.

On the other hand, there is the question of alien invasion. It all starts off with sudden sightings of masses of UFOs looming in the horizon. Do we prepare for war? We all somehow think that aliens come in peace. But do they ever? Again and again, from the H.G Wells’ classic War of the Worlds to blockbusters such as Independence Day, we greet them, show them round and suddenly half our population’s gone.

But is it perhaps the hope that they come in peace and with interplanetary goodwill that keeps us believing in aliens or, if not believing, at least interested and searching the skies?

Matthew Roden

1. What is the speaker’s main purpose? Choose the correct answer.

a. to inform

b. to entertain

c. to discuss different views

Ans. c. to discuss different views

2. What does the speaker want to focus on? Choose the correct answer.

a. why we are fascinated by aliens 

b. what aliens look like

c. proving the existence of aliens

Ans. a. why we are fascinated by aliens

3. What are the three types of aliens described? 

Ans. The three types of aliens described are:

i) the insectoid – a multi limbed, bug-eyed, praying mantis – like creature, 

ii) the reptilian variety which has something of a prehistoric appearance,

iii) the humanoid alien – a grayish blue or green, short and skinny creature with a huge bulbous head and large eyes. It has no hair, no ears, no nose and only a slit for a mouth.

4. Why does the speaker think we keep looking for aliens?

Ans. We keep looking for the aliens because we are interested in them. We believe that they come in peace and with interplanetary goodwill.

5. Complete these sentences.

a. Crop circles are_________

b. In most films we make the aliens welcome and then they________

Ans. a. Crop circles are made by aliens.

b. In most films we make the aliens welcome and then they entertain us.

6. Make sentences with:

a. put through

b. start off

Ans. a. Put through: He was put through medical tests and experiments.

b. Start off: The horse started off at a steady trot.

IV. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

The human eye is perhaps our most important sense organ. We depend upon sight more than upon any other sense to supply us with crucial information about the world we live in.

In many ways the eye operates like a camera. Light rays enter through a small area of transparent material (called the cornea). The amount of light allowed in is controlled by the widening or narrowing of the pupil, which acts like a camera aperture. (The pupil is the black hole in the middle of the iris or coloured part of the eye). Light rays are then brought into focus by the lens behind the pupil, and projected onto a membrane at the back of the eyeball. This membrane acts like the film inside the camera and is called the retina. As in a camera, the image projected is inverted (upside down).

The similarity between a camera and the eye ends here. When we take a photo, we record images onto film. Our eyes do much more. They allow us to make sense of what we see because our eyes are connected to our brain. The images formed on the darkened black wall of the retina are converted into electrical impulses which are sent to the brain along the optic nerve, and then converted into meaningful messages.

There are two particularly important things the brain does. Firstly, it puts together the separate information it receives from each eye so that we do not see double. Secondly, it reads the upside down images on our retina and turn them the right way up.

The brain also sorts out the information it gets from the two different types of light-sensitive nerve cells on the retina-the rods and the cones. The rods are highly sensitive to light intensity but do not register colour. The cones see colour and fine details, but only work in bright light.

I. Underline the correct answer. The overall purpose of the text is to 

a. discuss the importance of vision.

b. explain how our eyes work.

c. describe the different sections of the eye

Ans. b. explain how our eyes work.

2. Why is the eye so important to human beings, according to the text?

Ans. According to the text, the eye is so important to human beings because we depend upon sight more than upon any other sense to supply us with crucial information.

3. The writer compares the parts of the eye to parts of a camera. Use the text and your knowledge of cameras to fill in the parts of the eye in this chart.

CameraEye
1. viewfinder
2. aperture
3. lens
4. film
a. __________
b.__________
C.__________
d.__________

Ans.

CameraEye
1. viewfinder
2. aperture
3. lens
4. film
a. Cornea
b. Pupil
c. retina
d. meaningful message

4. In what important way is a camera different from the human eye, according to the text?

Ans. According to the text, when we take a photo, we record images onto films. But our eyes do much more. They allow us to make sense of what we see because our eyes are connected to our brain. The images formed on the darkened black wall of the ratina are converted into electrical impulses which are sent to the brain along the optic nerve, and then converted into meaningful messages. In this way a camera is different from the human eyes.

5. Name the three things that the brain must do to make use of the information it receives.

Ans. The brain must do the following things to make use of the information it receives :

i) it should put together the separate information it receives from each eye, so that we do not see double.

ii) it should read the upside down images on our retina and turn them the right way up.

 iii) it should sort out the information it receives from the two different types of light-sensitive nerve cells on the retina – the rods and the cones. 

V.Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

The flute is a very sensitive instrument and is highly suited to classical Indian music. In India, it has many names- bansuri, vansh or venu. A very old instrument, it has been mentioned in texts which are two thousand years old.

A typical Indian bamboo flute is a simple tube of uniform bore. The bamboo tube is closed at one end. This could be a natural closure made by the bamboo stem itself or, it is plugged with a stopper made of cork.

The bamboo for a flute is chosen very carefully. It has to be from a bamboo plant neither too old nor too young. The bamboo needs to be of medium thickness and the stem as to be clean and smooth. In India, the best bamboo comes from the north-east of the country. Once it is selected, the bamboo is dried in the shade for about a year. A flute is normally a metre long, depending upon the thickness and the density of the bamboo. The right number of holes of the correct size is then made on the bamboo.

While playing the instrument, the player’s fingers are kept in direct contact with the holes to produce all the intrica- cies of the ragas. The flute is placed horizontally, under the player’s mouth, tilted towards the ground. The artist sits straight. This helps the artist in breathing better and in blowing into the flute for long hours.

Flutes in the northern parts of India usually have six holes for playing and one for blowing the air into. In ancient frescoes and sculptures, flutes are depicted with only six holes in all. The flute used in Carnatic music is smaller in size and has nine holes. This flute is made of the thick bamboo found in the southern parts of India.

frescoes : paintings done rapidly in water colour on wet plaster on a wall or ceiling, so that the colours penetrate the plaster and becomes fixed as it dries

1. How do you know the flute has existed in India for a long time?

Ans. The flute has been mentioned in texts which are two thousand years old. So, we can say that the flute has existed in India for a long time.

2. What is the kind of bamboo that is used to make a flute?

Ans. The bamboo that is used to make a flute should neither be too old nor be too-young. It should be of medium thickness and the stem has to be clean and smooth.

3. Making a bamboo flute is an exact science. Pick a sentence from the passage that conveys this. 

Ans. The sentence from the passage that conveys this is

“A flute is normally a metre long,

depending upon the thickness and

density of the bamboo.”

4. What are the differences between the flutes used in the southern and the northern parts of India?

Ans. Flutes in the northern parts of India usually have six holes for playing and one for blowing the air into. The bamboo used for making such flutes should be of medium thickness and the stem has to be clean and smooth. The bamboo plant should be neither too old nor too young.

In the southern part of India, particularly in Carnatic music, the flute that is used is smaller in size and has nine holes. This flute is made of the thick bamboo found in the southern parts of India.

5. Make a meaningful sentence with the word depicted.

Ans. The poet has depicted the beauty of Nature in the poem.

VI. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

At Denver, many passengers got into the east-bound Boston train. In one coach sat a pretty young woman, beautifully dressed. Among the newcomers were two men: the younger was good-looking with a bold, honest face, the other a large sad-faced person, roughly dressed. The two were hand-cuffed together.

The only empty seats in the coach, was one facing the young woman. Here the linked pair seated themselves. The woman quickly glanced at them with disinterest. Then with a lovely smile, she held out a little grey-gloved hand.

“Well, Mr Easton, if you will make me speak first, I suppose I must speak first. Don’t you ever say hello to old friends when you meet them in the West?”

The younger man pulled himself up sharply at the sound of her voice. He seemed to struggle with a little embar- rassment which he threw off instantly. Then he held her fingers with his left hand.

“It’s Miss Fairchild,” he said with a smile, “I’ll ask you to excuse the other hand. I’m not able to use it at present.” He slightly raised his right hand, which was bound at the

wrist by the handcuff. The happy look, in the woman’s eyes slowly changed to one of horror. Easton, with a laugh, as if amused, was about to speak again when the other stopped him. The sad-faced man had been watching the young  woman’s face with his sharp, searching eyes. 

“You’ll excuse me for speaking, Miss. But I see you know the marshal here. If you’ll ask him to speak a word for me, he’ll do it. He’s taking me to Leavenworth Prison”.

“Oh!” she said with a deep breath and returning colour. “So that’s what you’re doing out here.

Marshal!”…

Two passengers in a seat nearby heard the conversation. “Pretty young to hold an office like that, isn’t he?” said one. 

“Young!” exclaimed the other, “Why, didn’t you catch on?

Say, did you ever know an officer to handcuff his prisoner to his right hand?”

Answer the following.

1. What is the purpose of the writer in describing the two men the way he has done?

Ans. The purpose of the writer in describing the two men the way he has done is that he wants to inform us that either of them is a criminal.

2. What do you gather about Mr Easton from this passage?

Ans. From the passage, I gather about Mr. Easton that he is younger and good-looking with a bold and honest face. He knows Miss Fairchild. The other man introduces him to be the marshal but he is a criminal.

3. Who was the sad-faced person? What do y think of his behaviour?

Ans. The sad-face person was a marshal.

He was a civilized man. He did not want to hurt4. the sentiment of a beautiful lady. So, he introduced her friend as the marshal.4.What is the surprise element in the story?

Ans. The readers think that Mr Easten is the marshall. But the surprise element in the story is that Mr Easton is a criminal.

5. Do you think Miss Fairchild should have known the truth about Mr Easton? Justify your stand.

Ans. No, I don’t think Miss Fairchild should have known the truth about Mr. Easton. If she has known the truth about him, she might be shocked and stunned. her

sentiment might be hurt.

VII. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

Extract from The Kabuliwala by Rabindranath Tagore My five-year-old daughter, Mini, can’t stop talking for a minute. After coming into the world, it only took her a year to learn to speak and ever since she has not wasted a minute of her waking hours by keeping silent. Her mother often scolds her and makes her shut up, but I can’t do that. When Mini is quiet, it is so unnatural that I cannot bear it. So her conversations with me proceed with great gusto.

One morning, as I was starting the seventeenth chapter of my novel, Mini came up to me and said, “Father, Ramdoyal the gatekeeper calls a crow a kauya instead of a kak. He doesn’t know anything, does he?” 

Before I had a chance to enlighten her about the multi-plicity of languages in the world, she brought up another subject. “Guess what, Father? Bhola says it rains when an elephant in the sky squirts water through its trunk. What nonsense he talks! On and on, all day.” 

Without waiting for my opinion on this matter either, shesuddenly asked, “Father, what relation is Mother to you?” “Good question,” I said to myself but to Mini I said, “Now run off and play with Bhola. I’ve got work to do.”

But she then sat down near my feet beside my writing table and, slapping her knees, began to recite, agdumbagdum at top speed. Meanwhile, in my seventeenth chapter, Pratap Singh was leaping under cover of night from his high prison window into the river below with Kanchanmala in his arms. My study looks out on to the road. Mini suddenly aban- doned the agdumbagdum game, ran over to the window and shouted, “Kabuliwala, Kabuliwala!” 

Class-10 Alternative English Notes/Solutions

Chapter No.Chapter’s Name
PROSE
Chapter 1The Fragrance of The Gods
Chapter 2Man Against Virus
Chapter 3Speech by Severn Suzuki
Chapter 4In Celebration of Being Alive
Chapter 5The Ambitious Guest
POETRY
Chapter 1To Sleep
Chapter 2Prayer of the Meek
Chapter 3Closed Path
Chapter 4Old Folks Laugh
GRAMMAR
1.Degree of Comparison
2.Conjunctions
3.Prepositions
4.Active and Passive Voice
5.Clauses
Reading
WRITING SKILLS
1.Newspaper Report
2.Article
3.Story-Writing
4.Dialogue
AUTOBIOGRAPHY
The Diary of a Young Girl

Choose the right answer to complete the statements.

1. …she has not wasted a minute of her waking hours by keeping silent. This line suggests that______

a. Mini was an extremely talkative child.

b. she did not speak for more than a minute. 

c. she wasted all her time talking.

Ans. a. Mini was an extremely talkative child.

2. Why couldn’t the father tolerate Mini being quiet?_______

a. because he found it boring.

b. because it did not seem normal when Mini was quiet.

c. because he liked listening to her talk. 

Ans. b. because it did not seem normal when Mini was quiet.

3. When her father asked her to get out and play with Bhola,________

a. Mini ran out immediately.

b. Mini went inside the house.

c. she sat near the table and began to sing,

Ans. c. she sat near the table and began to sing. 

4. Whom does Mini see outside the window?________

a. Bhola

b. Kabuliwala

c. her friends

Ans. b. Kabuliwala

5. What do you think is the profession of Mini’s father?

Ans. I think Mini’s father is a writer.

6. Was Mini’s mother patient with her?

Ans. No, Mini’s mother was not patient with her because Mini was highly talkative.

7 . Describe any two qualities of Mini.

Ans. Mini was talkative. She knew how to dance and sing, too.

VIII. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

The animal kingdom can be divided into four categories. The first category comprises the diurnal animals, which are active during the day. In the second category, we have the nocturnal animals, which move about at night. Then we have two less well-known varieties, the crepuscular animals, which are active during twilight hours, and the arrhythmic animals, which go about during both day and night. Probably such a division began when simple and weak animals began to come out in the dark to escape from diurnal predators. Today, although we associate the night with peace and silence, two-thirds of the mammals of the world move about at night, mammals such as mice, bats, foxes, flying squirrels and leopards.

How do the nocturnal animals find their way in the dark? Domestic cats, as we know, have eyes that can adapt to darkness. But in the wild, the mechanisms are more sophisticated. The eyes of an owl, for example, contain a large number of rods and nerve cells. These cells respond to dim light and to changes in light intensity. Would you believe it if you are told that an owl can detect a moving mouse in one millionth of a candle power of light? Snakes make use of the sense of smell at night. Their tongue picks up small particles from objects around them and sensors at the roof of the mouth smell the particles. Another sense that helps animals to find their way is the sense of heat.

The snake, again, can record the heat emitted by objects around it and move in on the objects with deadly precision. Some animals have a sort of kinesthetic sense which helps them to move about at night in familiar territory. It is a sense of the movements of the body involved in a particular action. Many of us walk down the stairs in the dark, open a cupboard and pick an object from inside with precision. It is this kind of sense that an owl uses to cover familiar territory. What do you know about a bat’s ability to fly at night?

Most of us imagine that the main activities of animals at night consist of chasing and capturing their prey. To a certain extent this is true. Many animals seek and find their food at night. Owls pick up mice; tigers go out to feed

upon animals which they have caught and stowed away earlier. But there are other activities at night. Animals play at night: raccoons, for example, play and gambol, as our pet dogs do in our garden. Male animals can be observed courting the females of their species. Spiders and toads court and mate at night: such behaviour has been observed by animal watchers.

But how does one watch animals in darkness?What are the techniques used for observing and taking pictures of animals at night? Any bright light will scare away the animals. Here scientists take advantage of the fact that most animals are blind to red light. They there- fore, use a torch with a red mask. Infrared telescopes have also been used to observe animals at night. Today, with very sophisticated cameras and lighting devices, it is possible to photograph and make recordings of the cries of animals in their dark and inaccessible forest haunts.

1. List the categories that the animal kingdom is divided into.

Ans. The animal kingdom is divided into four categories. The first category comprises the diurnal animals, which are active during the day. In the second category, there are nocturnal animals which move about at night. The third variety is crepuscular animals which are active during twilight hours. The fourth category is the arrhythmic animals which go about during both-day and night.

2. What is special about the eyes of an owl?

Ans. The special about the eye of an owl is that its eyes contain a large number of rods and nerve cells. These cells respond to dim light and to changes in light intensity.

3. What are the senses that help a snake at night? 

Ans. The sense of smell helps a snake at night. The snake’s tongue picks up small particles from objects around it and sensors at the roof of the mouth smell the particles.

4. Besides chasing and capturing prey, list some of the activities of animals at night.

Ans. Besides chasing and capturing prey, some of the activities of animals at night are the following: 

i) They play at night.

ii) Male animals court the females of their species.

5. What is the technique used to watch animals at night?

Ans. Most animals are blind to red light. So, scientists use a torch with red mask. Infrared telescopes have also been used to observe animals at night. In the modern world, very sophisticated cameras and light- ing devices are there to photograph and make record- ings of the cries of animals in their dark and inaccessible forest haunts.

IX. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

Is writing obsolete? Has the written note lost its relevance? Is it really necessary to be trained to write? Doubts once raised about the need to learn Mathematics after calcula- tors and computers gained ground, are now being raised about the value of handwriting instruction.

Today, a greater dependence on technology is leading to the neglect of training in handwriting. While most school work demands handwriting on a daily basis, it is believed that a significant percentage of students struggle to achieve proficiency in this skill. Research reveals that handwriting influences reading, writing, language, and critical thinking. Yet, not all students are being provided adequate instruction in this foundational skill. In fact, some teachers have shifted their focus from handwriting instruction to teaching keyboarding because of the large student dependence on digital devices. In the 21st century classroom, keyboarding is necessary, but overemphasis can leave students at a definite disadvantage.

Handwriting is not just about lower level training for the hand to form correct patterns of letters. It is about higher level training for the brain and the hand to work together and create language with meaning and purpose! If handwriting is not learned and practised from the early years, students are denied several linked benefits such as increased brain activation, improved performance across academic subjects and a foundation for higher order thinking skills.

Experts say that daily writing lightens the strain of thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering. Regular handwriting practice makes the task more automatic and less challenging.It improves the quality, quantity and speed of writing. The brain is sufficiently conditioned to move on to the next level of planning and thought organisation required for effective writing. The habit of writing naturally and easily thus sharpens focus and develops crucial critical thinking skills.

All the evidence proves that handwriting instruction is a vital twenty-first century classroom skill. It cannot be ignored, reduced or diluted in any way. Clear, coherent writing practice enables students to efficiently develop a range of skills that ultimately lead to improved grades, enhanced test scores, and a superior academic perfor- mance.

1. What is the common doubt about learning Maths and practising handwriting?

Ans. The common doubt about learning Maths and practising handwriting is whether one should learn Maths when calculators and computers have gained ground and whether handwriting has lost its relevance.

2. State one reason why handwriting is being neglected.

Ans. Handwriting is being neglected because some teachers have shifted their focus from handwriting instruction to teaching keyboarding because of the large students dependence on digital devices.

3. When does teaching keyboarding change from an advantage to a disadvantage?

Ans. Teaching keyboarding change from an advantage to a disadvantage when overemphasis is laid on key boarding.

4. Highlight the difference between handwriting at the lower level and the higher level.

Ans. Handwriting at the lower level is necessary to form correct patterns of letters. It is about higher level training for the brain and the hand to work together and to create language with meaning and purpose. If handwriting is not learned and practised from the early years students are denied several linked benefits such as increased brain activation, improved performance across academic subjects and a foundation for higher order thingking skills.

5. a. Which word in the passage means the same as ‘old fashioned/outdated’?

i. diluted

ii. obsolete

iii. crucial

iv. proficiency

Ans. ii. obsolete

C.Which word means the opposite of ‘ultimately’?

i. lastly

ii. initially

iii. gradually 

iv. completely

Ans. ii. initially

X. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow.

Mizoram, the tiny hill state in north-east India, has an ancient history that is closely woven with the mysterious cycle of bamboo flowering. A traditional saying in Mizoram goes, “When the bamboo flowers, famine, death and destruction will follow.” Elders say the flowering and fruit- ing of bamboo takes place at an interval of 40 to 50 years; the menace persists for three years.

The strange phenomenon of bamboo flowering usually occurs once in the plant’s lifetime and the occurrence attracts national and international attention. Authorities in several Southeast Asian countries consult one another on how to handle the natural growth cycle of the humble bamboo plant, to prevent its high socio-economic and ecological impacts.

How does this happen? First, bamboo plants die after flowering, leaving bare, exposed soil. This could be disas- trous in mountainous states. The time it takes before the plants take seed again denies fodder for cattle. When the cattle population is affected, it affects the people of the land. Secondly, the flowering produces a lot of fruit. This fruit draws rats on a massive scale; locals call it the time of idur banya (invasion by rats). The huge rat population eats up rice and other food crops, not only in the fields, but also stored in granaries. This then leads to large scale famine.

Bamboo and various items produced from it are the main source of livelihood for most indigenous people in remote hills. Besides food, fuel and fodder, bamboo supports a thriving economy that includes the paper industry, construction and cottage industry.

Experts agree that it is impossible to replace bamboo with other plant varieties without creating an upheaval among the people. “Bamboo is the green gold of the region. It is part of the living culture of the local people,” an expert warns. “The only way to avert the cyclical famine associ- ated with bamboo flowering is to teach farmers to plant crops that rats do not eat, such as ginger and turmeric, during the periods when vast fields of bamboo are expected to flower,” he says.

People must be educated about the devastating conse- quences of the phenomenon so they can work hand in hand with the authorities to prevent loss of life and income.

Fill in the blanks with not more than two to three words. 

1. According to Mizo tradition,______ follow when the bamboo flowers. 

Ans. According to Mizo tradition, famine, death and  destruction follow when the bamboo flowers.

2. The flowering of the bamboo is referred to as a ‘mysterious cycle’ because it______ by trouble

and ruin. 

Ans. The flowering of the bamboo is referred to as a ‘mysterious cycle’ because it is followed by trouble and ruin.

3. The bamboo flowering is a_______Occurrence. 

Ans. The bamboo flowering is a strange occurrence.

4. The natural cycle of the bamboo plant attracts  national and international attention because of its ________

Ans. The natural cycle of the bamboo plant attracts national and international attention because of its  high socio-economic and ecological impacts.

5. Bare, exposed soil on mountain slopes is not___________ because it can lead to other problems.

Ans. Bare, exposed soil on mountain slopes is not good because it can lead to other problems.

6. The best way to tackle the problem is by __________do not eat just before bamboo flowering time.

Ans. The best way to tackle the problem is by planting crops that rats do not eat just before bamboo flowering time.

7.Some of the crops that rats do not eat are_________.

Ans. Some of the crops that rats do not eat are ginger and turmeric.

8. ‘Thriving’ means ________(Give one word.).

Ans. ‘Thriving’ means prospering. 

9. The writer suggests that people are made aware about_______ so that they can aid authorities to counter the heavy loss incurred.

Ans. The writer suggests that people are made aware about the devastating consequences so that they can aid au- thorities to counter the heavy loss incurred.

10. Find a word in paragraph four that is the opposite of ‘international’. 

Ans. indigenous.

XI. Read the poem and answer the questions that follow. 

Something Told the Wild Geese 

Something told the wild geese

It was time to go,

Though the fields lay golden

Something whispered, ‘Snow!’

Leaves were green and stirring

Berries luster-glossed.

But beneath warm feathers

Something cautioned, ‘Frost!’

All the sagging orchards

Steamed with amber spice, 

But each wild breast stiffened

At remembered ice.

Something told the wild geese

It was time to fly,

Summer sun was on their wings,

Winter in their cry.

Rachel Field

1. Which are the ‘winter’ words in the poem? 

Ans. The ‘winter’ words in the poem are snow, frost and ice.

2. Which season is the poet talking about? Find the words that describe the season. 

Ans. The poet is talking about the winter season.

The words that describe the season are snow, frost and ice.

3. Explain the line:

…each wild breast stiffened

At remembered ice.

Ans. The line illustrates the arrival of the winter season in which water changes into ice and birds, animals and human beings find their limbs becoming stiffened and hard. 

4. Which lines tell us that the birds know that winter is approaching and they will be in danger if they do not go?

Ans. The following lines tell us that the birds know that winter is approaching and they will be in danager if they do not go.

“Something told the wild geese It was time to fly,”

5. What do you think the poet is referring to when she uses the word ‘something’? 

Ans. When the poetess uses the word ‘something.’ She is referring to the feeling of cold. 

XII. Read the poem and answer the questions that follow.

A Poison Tree

I was angry with my friend:

I told my wrath, my wrath did end.

I was angry with my foe:

I told it not, my wrath did grow. 

And I watered it in fears

Night and morning with my tears,

And I sunned it with smiles

And with soft deceitful wiles.

And it grew both day and night,

Till it bore an apple bright, 

And my foe beheld it shine, 

And he knew that it was mine- 

And into my garden stole 

When the night had veiled the pole; 

In the morning, glad, I see 

My foe outstretched beneath the tree.

                        William Blake

1.In stanza 1, the speaker makes a contrast between two occasions when he got angry with someone. What is the contrast?

Ans. The contrast is that the speaker ends his wrath in the case of his friend by telling his friend about his wrath. But when he is angry with his enemy, he does not tell it to him and his wrath starts growing up.

2. Pick out the words in stanza 2 that shows that the speaker is now talking of his anger as if it were a seed or a small plant? What served as water for the plant and what served as sunlight?

Ans. The words that show that the speaker is now talking of his anger as if it were a seed or a small plant are

“And I watered it in fears

Night and morning with my tears.”

His fears served as water for the plant and his smiles served as sunlight.

3. What were the inner feelings that made the plant grow and how did the speaker express it outwardly?

Ans. The inner feelings that made the plant grow were anger and frustration. Outwardly the speaker expressed it with a happy smile.

4. What happened when the speaker’s enemy saw the shining apple? Did he want it because it was attractive or was there an additional reason?

Ans. When the speaker’s energy saw the shining apple, he was attracted towards it.

No, he did not want it because it was attractive but he wanted it because it belonged to the speaker and he was tempted to steal it.

5. What was the immediate reaction of the speaker when he saw his foe dead? Should his reaction have been different? Support your answer.

Ans. When the speaker saw his foe dead, he was glad. No, his reaction should not have been different. He wanted to punish his enemy and he was dead now.

XIII. Read the poem and answer the questions that follow.

The People Upstairs

The people upstairs all practise ballet

Their living room is a bowling alley 

Their bedroom is full of conducted tours.

Their radio is louder than yours,

They celebrate week-ends all the week.

When they take a shower, your ceilings leak. 

They try to get their parties to mix

By supplying their guests with Pogo sticks, 

And when their fun at last abates,

They go to the bathroom on roller skates. 

I would love the people upstairs wondrous 

If instead of above us, they just lived under us.

              Ogden Nash

1. Do you think the poet was exaggerating his complaints against the people on a floor above him? Explain.

Ans. Yes, I think the poet was exaggerating his complaints against the people on a floor above him. If the people were enjoying dance and music, he, too, should have participated in merry-making. He should not have complained.

2. How do the guests of the people upstairs add to the poet’s problems?

Ans. The guests of the people upstairs add to the poet’s problem because their radio plays loudly and they dance and thump on the floor. They create loud noises.

3. What message does the poet want to convey in this poem? 

Ans. The poet wants to convey the message in the poem that we should not disturb our neighbours.

4. How do you think the poet would have liked the people upstairs to be?

Ans. I think the poet would have liked the people upstairs to be peaceful and and silent. 

5. How would you have reacted if you had

neighbours like the people upstairs?

Ans. If I had neighbours like the people upstairs, I would not have complained. I would have participated in their dance and music. I might have been friendly with them.

XIV. Read the poem and answer the questions that follow.

All The World’s A Stage

All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players; 

They have their exits and their entrances, 

And one man in his time plays many parts, 

His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,

Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms. 

Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel 

And shining morning face, creeping like snail 

Unwillingly to school. And then the lover, 

Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad 

Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier, 

Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard, 

Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,

Seeking the bubble reputation

Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice, 

In fair round belly with good capon lined, 

With eyes severe and beard of formal cut, 

Full of wise saws and modern instances;

And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts

Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,

With spectacles on nose and pouch on side; 

His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide 

For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice, 

Turning again toward childish treble, pipes

And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all, 

That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

by William Shakespeare

1. The title of the poem is a comparison. How is that comparison explained in the first five lines?

Ans. The poet compares the world to a dramatic stage where people make their appearances like actors and after playing their roles they depart from the stage. Every man in his life-time plays seven roles.

2. Why does the schoolboy whine and creep like a snail? What shows that he is a healthy little boy? 

Ans. The school boy whines and creeps like a snail because he is reluctant to go to school.

His shining morning face shows that he is a healthy little boy. 

3. Do you think the poet praises the young lover, or does he gently make fun of him?

Which words support your answer? 

Ans. I think the poet gently makes a fun of the young lover.

The following words support the answer:

“Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad

Made to his mistress’ eyebrow.”

4. What kind of man is the judge?

Ans. The judge is fat. He has round belly. His eyes are severe and his beard is of formal cut. He is full of saws and modern instances.

5. What is the poet’s attitude towards old age? Sympathy? Sadness? Contempt? What feelings do you see especially in the last two lines?

Ans. I think the poet has sympathetic attitude towards old age.

In the last two lines, he says that an old man is just like a child. He forgets everything. He loses his teeth, his eyesight, his taste and almost everything.

Additional Questions & Answers

1. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow :

Handwriting is not just about lower level training for the hand to form correct patterns of letters. It is about higher level training for the brain and the hand to work together and create language with meaning and purpose. If handwriting is not learned and practised from the early years, students are denied several linked benefits such as increased brain activation, improved performance across academic subjects and a foundation for higher order thinking skills. Experts say that daily writing lightens the strength of thinking, understanding and remembering. Regular handwriting practice makes the task more automatic and less challenging, and improves the quality, quantity and speed of writing. The habit of writing naturally and easily thus sharpens focus and develops critical thinking skills.

a.What is handwriting all about?

Ans. Handwriting is all about higher level training for the brain and hand to work together and create language with meaning and purpose.

b. What happens if handwriting is not practiced from the early years?

Ans. If handwriting is not practised from the early years, students are denied several linked benefits such as increased brain activation, improved performance across academic subjects and a foundation for higher order thinking skills.

C. What do experts say on daily writings? 

Ans. Experts say that daily writing lightens the strength of thinking, understanding and remembering.

d. What is the outcome of regular handwriting practice?

Ans. Regular handwriting practice makes the task more automatic and less challenging and improves the quality, quantity and speed of writing.

e. What does the habit of writing naturally develop? 

Ans. The habit of writing naturally develops critical thinking skills.

2.Read the poem and answer the questions that follow :

         Indian Weaver

Weavers, weaving at break of day,

Why do you weave a garment so gay?

Blue as the wing of a halcyon wild.

We weave the robes of a new born child. 

Weavers weaving at the fall of night.

Why do you weave a garment so bright? Like the plumes of a peacock, purple and green. 

We weave the marriage viels of a queen.

Weavers weaving solemn and still 

What do you weave in the moonlight chill?

White as a feather and white as a child,

We weave a dead man’s funeral shroud.

(Sarojini Naidu)

a. Which stage of human life has been referred to by the poet in the first paragraph? 

Ans. The childhood stage of human life has been referred to by the poet in the first paragraph.

b. Which stage of human life has been referred to by the poet in the last paragraph? 

Ans. The old stage of human life has been referred to by the poet in the last paragraph. 

c.What are the colours and imagery that represent life during youth? 

Ans. The colours that represent life during youth are purple and green.

The imagery that represents life during youth is “the plumes of a peacock.”

d.Why does the weavers weave a garment so gay?

Ans. The weavers weave a garment so gay because they are weaving it for a newly born child.

3. Read the passage and answer the questions that follow:

Mushroom cultivation has a long history with over twenty species commercially cultivated. Mushrooms are cultivated in at least 60 countries with China, the United States, Netherlands, France and Poland being the top five producers.

A fraction of the many fungi consumed by humans are currently cultivated and sold commercially. Commercial cultivation is important ecologically, as there have been concerns of depletion of larger fungi such as ‘chanter- elles’ in Europe possibly because the group has grown popular, yet remains a challenge to cultivate.

Some species are difficult to cultivate; others (particu- larly ‘mycorrhizal’ species) have not yet been success- fully cultivated. Some of these species are harvested from the wild and can be found in markets. When in season, they can be purchased fresh, and many species are sold dried as well.

Medicinal mushrooms are mushrooms or extracts from mushrooms that are thought to be treatments for diseases, yet remain confirmed in mainstream science and medicine; and so are not approved as drugs or medical treatments. Such use of mushrooms thus falls into the domain of traditional medicine.

a. What are mushrooms known as in scientific terms? 

i) Fungi 

ii) Chanterelle 

iii) traditional medicine

Ans. i) Fungi

b. What are medicinal mushrooms?

Ans. Medicinal mushrooms are mushrooms or extracts from mushrooms that are thought to be treatments for diseases.

C. How are mushrooms sold in the markets? 

Ans. When there is season, mushrooms can be purchased fresh, and many species are sold dried as well.

d. State whether the following are true or false : 

i) There are only ten species of mushroom cultivated commercially.  False

ii) Mushrooms are approved as drugs. False

iii) Some species of mushroom are difficult to cultivate.true

iv) India is among the top five producers of mushroom.     False

4.Read the poem and answer the questions that follow :

To Blossoms

Fair pledges of a fruitful tree, 

Why do ye fall so fast? 

Your date is not so past, 

But you may stay yet here awhile 

To blush and gently smile, 

And go at last.

What were ye born to be 

An hour or half’s delight? 

And so to bid good night? 

T’was pity Nature brought ye forth 

Merely to show your worth 

And lost you quite.

But you are lovely, where we

May read how soon things have,

Their end, though ne’er so brave:

And after they have shown their pride. 

Like you awhile, they glide

Into the grave. 

On the basis of your reading of the poem, complete the sentences that follow :

a. The poet calls the flowers_____

Ans. The poet calls the flowers fair pledges of a fruitful tree.

b. The poet feels sorry that _______

Ans. The poet feels sorry that flowers are short-lived.

C.The flowers have a short span of life. We know this from the line,

Ans. The flowers have a short span of life. We know this from the line, Like you a while, they glide into the grave’.

Choose the correct answer from the given options:

d. The flowers are like lovely leaves of:

i) A book where one can read how things have their end.

ii) A tree where one can see beauty all around. 

iii) A book where one can get knowledge.

Ans. i) A book where one can read how things have their end.

e.Fair pledges means – 

i) Beautiful leaves

ii) Beautiful flowers

iii) Beautiful promises

Ans. ii) Beautiful flowers

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