An Approach to ICSE English provides a platform to contribute, discuss and comment on the various issues related to the study and practice of English for the students and teachers of ICSE syllabus. Even with its focussed nature, An Approach to ICSE English will be beneficial to everyone involved in the learning the niceties of the English language.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

ICSE 2017 English 2 Prefinal Examination Two

English Paper 2
 (Two hours)

Answers to this paper must be written on the paper provided separately.
You will not be allowed to write during the first 15 minutes. This time is to read the question paper. The time given at the head of this paper is the time allotted for writing the answers.
You must attempt one question each from Section A, B, and C and any two other questions.
Attempt five questions in all.

Drama: The Merchant of Venice
William Shakespeare
Question 1
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
I am bid forth to supper, Jessica:
There are my keys. But wherefore should I go?
I am not bid for love; they flatter me:
But yet I'll go in hate, to feed upon
The prodigal Christian. Jessica, my girl,
Look to my house. I am right loath to go:
There is some ill a-brewing towards my rest,
For I did dream of money-bags to-night.

(a)    Who has invited Shylock to supper? Why? Why does Shylock call him The prodigal Christian?
(b)   What instructions does Shylock give Jessica? Why?
(c)    “I am right loath to go:” Why does Shylock say so?
(d)   How is his fear justified later in the play? How does Shylock behave then? How does this affect his attitude towards the ‘merry bond”?
(e)    Do you justify Jessica’s action? Justify your answer.
Question 2
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
Shall I not have barely my principal?
Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture,
To be so taken at thy peril, Jew.
Why, then the devil give him good of it!
I'll stay no longer question.
(a)    Where are Shylock and Portia? In what guise was Portia there? Why?
(b)   Why does Shylock ask for ‘barely my principal’? Describe the events in the scene that brought Shylock to plead for barely ‘my principal’?
(c)    Explain:
Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture,
To be so taken at thy peril, Jew.
(d)   What was the other law that had a hold on Shylock? Having explained the law, what did Portia ask Shylock to do?
(e)    What did the Duke say to Shylock now? How did Antonio respond to Portia’s ‘mercy’ on Shylock?

Poetry: A Collection of ICSE
Poetry and Short Stories
Question 3
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
“I’m grateful, sir”, he whispered, as I handed my canteen
And smiled a smile that was, I think, the brightest that I’ve seen.
“Seems silly that a man my size so full of vim and zest,
Could find himself defeated by a small pain in his chest.”
(a)    Where is the soldier? Why was his smile said to be the brightest the narrator had ever seen?
(b)   What does the soldier tell about his wife and his mother now?
(c)    Why did the soldier consider luckier than the rest? What happened to the rest?
(d)   Later the soldier says that ‘It’s growing dim and I thought that the day had just begun’. Give a brief explanation of the line.
(e)    How does the poem end? Comment on the conclusion of the poem.
Question 4
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And thing are not what they seem.
(a)    What is meant by ‘mournful numbers’? Why does the poet say that life is not an empty dream?
(b)   Later the poet says that And the grave is not its goal?  What is the poet’s belief about life after death?
(c)    Explain: Dust thou art, to dust returnst’.
(d)   The poet refers to the footprints that can give confidence to a shipwrecked sailor. Elucidate with reference to the context.
(e)    What aspect of the poem appeals to you? Why?
Poetry: A Collection of ICSE
Poetry and Short Stories
Question 5
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
He was the first to help transport the injured to St. George Hospital. Had it not been for the efforts of people like him, many of the wounded might not have made it to the hospital in time.
(a)    Who does ‘he’ refer to in the extract? What is he popularly known as? Why does Kabeer want to be like him?
(b)   What was the effect of Kabeer’s speech on his audience?
(c)    Briefly mention the other people that have inspired Kabeer.
(d)   What was the reaction of the students and their teacher when Kabir ended his speech?
(e)    What aspect of the shorts story appealed to you the most? Why?
Question 6

With close reference to the short story The Kabuliwala by Rabindranath Tagore comment on the complexity of human relationships.

Monday, 27 February 2017

PreFinal Examination ICSE 2017 English Paper 1

PreFinal Examination ICSE 2017
English Paper I
 (Two hours)
Answers to this Paper must be written on the paper provided separately.
You will not be allowed to write during the first 15 minutes.
This time is to be spent in reading the question paper.
The time given at the head of this Paper is the time allowed for writing the answers.
Attempt all four questions
The intended marks for the questions or parts of questions are given in bracket [ ].
You are advised to spend not more than 35 minutes in answering Question 1
and 20 minutes in answering Question 2.
Question 1
(Do not spend more than 35 minutes on this question)                Write a composition (350-400 words) on any one of the following: -  [25]
(a) If you get an opportunity to make an important change in your life, what would it be? How will the change affect you and the people around you? 
(b) Write about a place you visited where you had a very good time. Describe where you went, with whom you went, when you went, what you did and how you enjoyed there.
(c) Some students give more importance to extracurricular activities than to their studies. Discuss the merits and demerits of this.
(d) Write a short story on the theme: “You can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep Spring from coming.” -Pablo Neruda
(e) Study the picture given below. Write a story or a description or an account of what it suggests to you. Your composition may be about the subject of the picture or may take suggestions from it; however, there must be a clear connection between the picture and your composition.

Question 2
(Do not spend not more than 20 minutes on this question.)                 [10]
Select ONE of the following:
(a) One of your friends has been selected as the Captain of the School Cricket team. Write a letter to congratulate him as well as to wish him success in his ventures.
(b) You wish to apply for a loan to meet the expense of your sister’s higher studies. Write a letter to the Manager of a bank requesting him for an appointment to discuss the procedure for procuring such a loan.
Question 3
(a) Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow:
He came into the room to shut the window while we were still in bed, and I saw he looked ill. He was shivering, his face was white, and he walked slowly as though it ached to move. 
"What's the matter, Schatz?" 
"I've got a headache." 
"You better go back to bed." 
"No. I'm all right." 
"You go to bed. I'll see you when I'm dressed." 
But when I came downstairs, he was dressed, sitting by the fire, looking a very sick and miserable boy of nine years. When I put my hand on his forehead, I knew he had fever. 
"You go up to bed," I said. "You're sick." 
"I'm alright," he said. 
When the doctor came, he took the boy's temperature. 
"What is it?" I asked him. 
"One hundred and two." 
Downstairs, the doctor left three different medicines in different coloured capsules with instructions for giving them. One was to bring down the fever, another a purgative, the third to overcome acidity, he explained. He seemed to know all about the influenza and said there was nothing to worry about if the fever did not go above a hundred and four degrees. There was a mild epidemic of flu and there was no danger if you avoided pneumonia. 
Back in the room, I wrote down the boy's temperature and made a note of the time for giving the various capsules. 
"Do you want me to read to you?" 
"All right. If you want to," said the boy. His face was very white and there were dark areas under his eyes. He lay still in the bed and seemed very detached from what was going on. 
I read aloud from Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates; but I could see he was not following what I was reading. 
"How do you feel, Schatz?" I asked him. 
"Just the same, so far," he said. 
I sat at the foot of the bed and read to myself while I waited for it to be time to give him another capsule. It would have been natural for him to go to sleep, but when I looked down, he was looking strangely at the foot of the bed. 
"Why don't you try to sleep? I'll wake you up for the medicines." 
"I'd rather stay awake." 
After a while, he said to me, "You don't have to stay in here with me, papa, if it bothers you." 
"It doesn't bother me." 
"No, I mean you don't have to stay if it's going to bother you." 
I thought, perhaps, he was a little light-headed. After giving him the prescribed capsules at eleven o'clock, l went out a while. At the house, they said the boy had refused to let anyone come into the room. 
"You can't come in," he said. "You must not get what I have." 
I went up to him and found him in exactly the position I had left him, white-faced, but with the tops of his cheeks flushed by the fever, still staring at the foot of the bed. 
I took his temperature. 
"What is it?" 
"Something like a hundred, " I said. 
It was one hundred and two and four tenths. 
"It was a hundred and two," he said. 
"Who said so?" 
"The doctor." 
"Your temperature is all right." 
"It's nothing to worry about." 
"I don't worry," he said, "but I can't keep from thinking." 
"Don't think," I said.  "Just take it easy." 
"I am taking it easy," he said and looked straight ahead. He was evidently holding tight onto himself about something. 
"Take this with water." 
"Do you think it will do any good?" 
"Of course it will." 
I sat down and opened the pirate book and commenced to read, but I could see he was not following, so I stopped. 
"About what time do you think I'm going to die?" he asked. 
"About how long will it be before I die?" 
"You aren't going to die. What's the matter with you?" 
"Oh yes, I am. I heard him say a hundred and two." 
"People don't die with a fever of one hundred and two. That's a silly way to talk." 
"I know they do. At school in France the boys told me you can't live with forty-four degrees. I've got a hundred and two." 
He had been waiting to die all day, ever since nine o'clock in the morning. 
 “You poor Schatz!" I said. “Poor old Schatz. You aren't going to die. There are different kinds of thermometers. On one thermometer, thirty-seven is normal. On this kind, ninety-eight is normal." 
"Are you sure?" 
"Absolutely," I said. "It's like miles and kilometers, you know. Like how many kilometers we make when we do seventy miles in the car." 
"Oh," he said. 
But his gaze at the foot of the bed relaxed slowly. His body relaxed too, finally. It was very slack the next day, and he cried very easily at little things that were of no importance. 
Adapted from Ernest Hemingway's short story
(a) Three words from the passage are given below. Give the meaning of each word as used in the passage. One word answers or short phrases will be accepted.                   
(i) miserable
(ii) detached
(iii) following           [3]
Answer the following questions briefly in your own words:        (i) Who is Schatz? What is the relation of the narrator to Schatz? How did Schatz look when he came into the room?                                        [2]
(ii) What were the medications given by the doctor to Schatz? What advice did he give to the narrator?                                                           [2]
(iii) How did Schatz look when he lay in bed? What did the narrator do to cheer up Schatz?                                                                                  [2]
(iv) In what state did the narrator find the boy when he returned to the room after a while?                                                                                  [2]
(v) Why did Schatz think that he was going to die?  [2]
(vi) How was  Schatz convinced that he was not going to die ?            [2]
(c) .
(i) In not more than 60 words, narrate the misunderstanding of Schatz and how he was cleared of his wrong conception.                                   [8]
(ii) Give a title to your summary and also give a reason to justify your choice.                                                                                                      [2]
Question 4
(a) In the following passage, fill in each of the numbered blanks with the correct form of the word given in brackets. Do not copy the passage, but write in correct serial order the word or phrase appropriate to the blank space.  
(0) Learning
.…0.…(learn) to speak English confidently.…1.… (be) nowadays a need. It is no more an issue of status however it is of supreme.…2.…(necessary) for a good quality job and .…3.… (flourish) in one’s career. Lots of accomplishments in life are greatly dependent upon the way you conduct yourself with the.…4.… (globe) customers and delegates, particularly in the international companies. Even in the management jobs the high profile people also require a .…6.… (fluent) in English. Yet again, it is not just to leave an impression of stylishness however it is necessary.…6.… (converse) your important points in a smart way. Usually people.…7.… (be) able to easily make their point work in their own goodwill, if they are able to intermingle.…8.…(appropriate) and present their points in an open platter.                                                     [4]
(b) Fill in the blanks with appropriate words:
(i) The front seats are reserved…………special guests.
(ii) He is giving French lessons ………… exchange for English lessons.
(iii) The office staffs were seated ………… the bottom of the table.
(iv)  Many Italian words are derived ………….Latin.
(v) The army was alerted to deal …………. the disorder in the city.    
(vi) He appealed ……………..the High Court.
(vii) He was annoyed ………….her for wasting his time.
(viii) The students benefit …………… the new method of teaching.     [4]
(c) Joint the following sentences to make one complete sentence without using and, but or so.
(i) Sheela lost her purse. It contained her passport.
(ii) John stopped for a snack on the way to his office. He reached the office on time.
(iii) Mary is reluctant to speak the truth. She is afraid of the aftereffects.
(iv) This is a restaurant. We meet daily here.   [4]
(d) Re-write the following sentences according to the instructions given after each. Make other changes that may be necessary, but do not change the meaning of each sentence.   
(i) Rajan is a scholar in Sanskrit. He is fluent in French too.
[Begin: Not only….]
(ii) As soon as the train entered the station, the porters scrambled onto the train. 
[No sooner…]
(iii) The magician said, “Will anyone come onto the stage? I am going to perform a         miracle that I performed yesterday in another town.”
[Rewrite in reported speech]
(iv)    The old lady requested the boy to help her to cross the road. 
[Begin: The boy…]
(v)     The children were so ill-mannered that I could not tolerate them.
[ Use: too]
(vi)     If the flood had subsided, the crop would not have been damaged.
 [Begin: Had…]
(vii) This is one of the most attractive places I have ever visited.
[ Begin: Very few…]
(viii) The students have probably answered the questions well.
[Begin:  In…]

Answers Click Read More

Friday, 20 January 2017

Preposition Exercise

Insert suitable preposition in the following:

1. On Sundays Mr. John stays ….….  home and works …. …. the garden.
2. …….. the daytime the streets are crowded by ….….  night they are quite deserted.
3. Shall we discuss the matter ….….  my room or shall I come ….….  your house?
4. Are you going ….….  train? No, I am going ….….  Rachel’s car.
5. Rajan saw him standing ….….  queue but I do not know whether he got ….….   the bus or not.
6. Hema arrived ….….   Kochi ….….  6.p.m. ….….  a cloudy September day.
7. Henry was leaning ….….  the wall ….….   his hands ….….   pockets.
8. Berna sits ….   her desk all day ….  her head ….  hand and it gets ….  my nerves.
9. This picture was painted ….….  Rembrandt. There is another Rembrandt …… the opposite wall.
10. My parents have lived ….….  this street ….….  ten years.
11. Have you heard ….….  James? Yes, I had a letter ….….  Monday.
12. I was ill ….….  week and ….….  that week my mother never left my side.
13. I am sorry ….….  being late. It was good ….….   you to wait ….….   me.
14. While on their way ….….  the school, ….….   the crossroads they were attacked ….….  the stalker.
15. The officer insisted ….….  seeing the ID card.
16. The children are very ….….   Cricket. During summer they spend most ….….  their time ….….  the playground.
17. Where does these flies come ….….?
18. The Smiths arrived ….….  the morning of the sixth of July.
19. The soldiers were trained in the camp ….….  six months.
20. She has not seen him ….….  he left the school.
21. It snowed all Monday but stopped snowing ….….  the night.
22. He was known to be a troublesome boy ….….  his childhood.
23. ….….  summer, we got to Shimla.
24. The children played football ….….   4.00.p.m. ….….  6.00.p.m
25. They did not get home ….….  seven in the evening.
26. They arrived ….….  hotel ….….  time.
27. We can go ….….  foot or go ….….  a bicycle.
28. The tourists were keen to get ….….  the camels.
29. Raman got ….….  the train ….….  Pune.
30. The kids swam ….….  sea while their mother stood ….….  the sea.
31. The cat jumped ….….  the roof.
32. They climbed ….….  the truck.
33. The helicopter hovered ….….  the accident scene.
34. We put a rug ….….  him.
35. There is a bridge ….….  the river.
36. The delegates discussed the issue ….…. a cup of coffee.
37. There is a Bible ….….  the pillow.
38. The Johnsons live ….….  us. We live ….….  them.
39. The family was annoyed when she married ….….   her.
40. He built a new house ….….  a lake.
41. I was happy to be ….….  my students again.
42. Do not touch the switch ….….   bare hands.
43. I have no money ….….  me.
44. They quarrelled ….….  the treasure.
45. It never occurred ….….  to the miscreants that they would be caught red-handed.
46. The miscreants were charged ….….  burglary.
47. They persisted ….….  their innocence and then they resorted ….….  violence.
48. They were not acquitted ….….   the crime
49. The judge was appreciated ….….  awarding a just judgement.
50. The boxer was knocked ….….  and after a while he came….….  and stood ….….  .
1.     On Sundays Mr. John stays at home and works in the garden.
2.     In the daytime the streets are crowded by during night they are quite deserted.
3.     Shall we discuss the matter in my room or shall I come to your house?
4.     Are you going by train? No, I am going in Rachel’s car.
5.      Rajan saw him standing in queue but I do not know whether he got into the bus or not.
6.     Hema arrived at Kochi at 6.p.m. on a cloudy September day.
7.     Henry was leaning against the wall with his hands in his pockets.
8.     Berna sits at her desk all day with her head in hand and it gets on my nerves.
9.     This picture was painted by Rembrandt. There is another Rembrandt on the opposite wall.
10.  My parents have lived in this street for ten years.
11.  Have you heard from James? Yes, I had a letter on Monday.
12.  I was ill for week and during that week my mother never left my side.
13.  I am sorry for being late. It was good of you to wait for   me.
14.  While on their way to the school, at the crossroads they were attacked by the stalker.
15.  The officer insisted on seeing the ID card.
16.  The children are very fond of Cricket. During summer they spend most of their time in the playground.
17.  Where does these flies come from?
18.  The Smiths arrived on the morning of the sixth of July.
19.  The soldiers were trained in the camp for six months.
20.  She has not seen him since he left the school.
21.  It snowed all Monday but stopped snowing during the night.
22.  He was known to be a troublesome boy during his childhood.
23.  In summer, we got to Shimla.
24.  The children played football from 6.00.p.m
25.  They did not get home before seven in the evening.
26.  They arrived at the hotel in/on time.
27.  We can go on foot or go on a bicycle.
28.  The tourists were keen to get onto the camels.
29.  Raman got onto/off the train at Pune.
30.  The kids swam in the sea while their mother stood at the sea.
31.  The cat jumped onto the roof.
32.  They climbed into the truck.
33.  The helicopter hovered over/above the accident scene.
34.  We put a rug over him.
35.  There is a bridge over the river.
36.  The delegates discussed the issue over a cup of coffee.
37.  There is a Bible under the pillow.
38.  The Johnsons live below us. We live above them.
39.  The family was annoyed when she married beneath her.
40.  He built a new house beside a lake.
41.  I was happy to be among my students again.
42.  Do not touch the switch with bare hands.
43.  I have no money on me.
44.  They quarrelled over the treasure.
45.  It never occurred to the miscreants that they would be caught red-handed.
46.  The miscreants were charged with burglary.
47.  They persisted in their innocence and then they resorted to violence.
48.  They were not acquitted of   the crime
49.  The judge was appreciated for awarding a just judgement.

50.  The boxer was knocked out and after a while he came to and stood up.