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.
Monday, 1 March 2010
ICSE English Paper I Grammar and Composition Pre Final Paper l
Answer 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 the paper is the time allowed for writing the answers.
Attempt all four questions.
The intended marks for questions or parts of questions are given in brackets [ ].
You are advised to spend not more than 35 minutes in answering Question 1 and 20 minutes in answering Question 2.
(Do not spend not more than 35 minutes on this Question.) 
Write a composition (350-400 words) on any one of the following:
(a) Terrorism is global threat that has to be snuffed out to prevent massive misery and excruciating agony of the humanity. Elaborate on the root causes, nature and consequences of terrorism as witnessed in the present scenario. What are your suggestions towards man’s crusade against the terrorist menace?
(b) The reality shows are the vogue on television now. Comment on the negative influences these shows have on the younger generation.
(c) A village fair provides an opportunity to observe typical as well as eccentric nature of people of different social strata. Recount an experience you had when you visited a village fair with your friends. How did the experience enrich your knowledge of human character?
(d) Write an original short story in which your aspirations are fulfilled by a mysterious and unpredictable phenomenon.
(e) Study the picture given below. Write a story or a description or an account of what the picture suggests to you. Your composition may be about the subject of the picture or you may take suggestions from it; but there must be a clear connection between the picture and your composition.
(Do not spend not more than 20 minutes on this Question.) 
(a) Your aunt had come to stay for a few days in your home. Write a letter to your friend giving a thumbnail portrait of your aunt, her curious habits and her amusing eccentricities.
(b) You, along with your relatives, plan to visit a hill resort in summer after the ICSE Examinations. Write a letter to the Write a letter to the Director in Charge of the Indian Tourism Department of the hill station you plan to visit enquiring about the easiest route, availability and tariff fro stay for three days as well as the interesting sites you should visit to make your summer trip meaningful.
Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow: 
Learn to value yourself. No matter what you’ve done in the past that you are ashamed or embarrassed of, leave it in the past. Recognise your own self-worth. Most of us are unable to appreciate the gifts that God has given us and keep hankering for things that others possess. Once we realize the talents and skills that we possess, we will be able to harness our energies and increase our sense of self-worth. This would enable us to love ourselves.
‘Loving ourselves does not mean we become narcissists, but simply that we find a sense of contentment by liking the way we are. Most of us simply do not love the way we are – we want longer hair, better complexion, better facial features, taller stature etc. As a result, we live in a continuous state of dissatisfaction just because we are “different” and do not know how to appreciate ourselves. A person who suffers from dissatisfaction and low self-esteem can neither be happy nor achieve anything.
A few years ago, I noticed my self-esteem varied wildly depending on what aspect of myself I was thinking about at the time. Thinking about my accomplishments made me feel really good and strong. But thinking about shortcomings left me dejected. To overcome this, I worked on integrating these disparate views of myself to ensure a more balanced outlook. When I felt high, I reminded myself that I also have a few flaws. When low, I recalled my achievements. This balance gave my self-esteem more stability.
Low self-esteem for a prolonged period may cause emotional, mental and even physical problems. In the worst form, it can lead to anxiety, stress or depression. Self-doubt and a sudden lack of confidence can be normal just a defensive reaction to a high-pressure situation. Even the most successful people have occasional self-doubts.
If you find yourself less competent or incapable of meeting the daily demands of life, you need to bring about a positive change in yourself. Once you regain your sense of worth, your stress level will fall and the symptoms of anxiety or depression will disappear. The following tips will help boost your ego and enhance well-being:
Think positive about problems and remember what you have accomplished successfully in the past.
Do not introduce too many simultaneous changes in your life. Introduce any change gradually and give yourself and others sufficient time to adjust to it.
Set short-term goals.
Accept only achievable targets.
Judge yourself and your strong points properly.
Avoid alcohol to boost self-esteem.
Learn to see yourself as an achiever.
Do not dwell on the past; it cannot be altered.
A positive self-image and a healthy attitude indicate a good level of self-esteem.
Increases your resistance to stress-related problems and improves work efficiency.
Work on improving your self-image and abandon negative feelings about yourself.
Develop confidence in yourself. Happiness and low self-esteem cannot co-exist.
(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. 
(b) Answer the following questions briefly in your own words:
(i) How can we to harness our energies and increase our sense of self-worth? 
(ii) Why most of us do not love ourselves? What is the consequence of this? 
(iii) What made the author feel good and what made him feel hopeless? 
(iv) How did the author bring stability to his self-respect? 
(v) What is the impact of prolonged period of low self-esteem? 
(vi) Quote a sentence from the passage that indicates that self-doubts are normal. 
(vii) What should we do when we feel incompetent to meet the stress of daily life? 
(c) In not more than 60 words summarise the tips given by the writer to boost our ego and enhance our well-being. 
(d) Give an appropriate title to your summary. State a reason to justify your choice. 
a) In the following passage, fill in each of the numbered blanks with correct form of the words given in brackets. Do not copy the passage, but write in correct serial order the word or phrase appropriate in the blank space. Example: (0) suffering 
Today more people than ever ……0…… (suffer) from sleep disturbances. Students should know that sleep ……1…… (enhance) memory. This is because the brain ……2……. (need) rest to process and store the information we have ……3…… (feed) into it. When we do not get the right amount of sleep, the brain is too blurry ……4…… (retain) the information. So……5…… (study) all night before an examination is not a good idea.
Exercise promotes physical ……6…… (exert) and therefore, ……7…… (guarantee) a good night’s sleep. People who are sedentary are more ……8…… (like) to suffer from sleep problems or insomnia. Insomnia pushes many people to take ……9…… (sleep) pills that can further ……10…… (tamper) with natural sleep patterns.
b) Fill in the blanks with appropriate words: 
(i) The government is worried .......the consequences of the meeting with the rebels.
(ii) The vacuum locks ....... the flavour of its content.
(iii) A true leader is not overwhelmed ......... criticism.
(iv) We should translate our dreams ......... reality.
(v) The Captain is entrusted........ unlimited powers.
(vi) The child was entrusted ....... the care of the matrons.
(vii) There is no meaning in quarrelling ........trifles.
(viii) The workers are entitled ................ yearly bonus.
(ix) The judge set........ the judgment of the lower court.
(x) We should stand .......our friends in an hour of crisis.
a) Rewrite the following sentences according to the instructions given after each of them, Make other changes necessary, but do not change the meaning of the sentence. 
(i) Raphael was driving the car. He was listening to the Prime Minister’s speech.
(Combine the two without using and or but)
(ii) Serena won the race. She retained her overall record.
(Begin: Not only ….)
(iii) The tourist said to me “I cannot see any landmarks in this guide. Can you direct me to the railway station today as you did yesterday? ”
(Change the narration.)
(iv) If it rains, the farmers will be relieved.
(Use ‘unless’ in place of ‘if’)
(v) The astronomers were fascinated by the rare phenomenon of the yellow moon.
(Change the voice)
(vi) The crowd blocked off the road. Immediately the police came in swarms.
(Use: No sooner….)
(vii) The book is so boring to me that I will not recommend it to anyone.
(viii) Our school team is one of the strongest in the tournament.
[ (Begin: Very few…..)