English SSC Maharashtra State Board

English Notes for Ssc Higher level

1.1 A Gift

Where should we not store the gift of life?  
We should not store the gift of life in a chest or any safe place,    where we keep our treasures. 

How can you make most of life?   
 We can make most of our life; by living every moment and we must use it in service towards others.

Do you agree life should be measured in deeds and not years? Why?  
Yes, I agree that life should be measured in deeds and not in years because our deeds will be remembered after us and we will make our life more meaningful if we live for the welfare of   others.

How according to you, life can be made worthwhile?  
 According to me life can be made worthwhile when we do not live only for ourselves but for all those around us who need our kindness and help. Since life is a gift given to us by God, we have to make the best use of it, it is a blessing.

What should you avoid doing with life as far as possible?
We should avoid stifling and hiding away life.

What is the attitude of the humblest towards life?
The attitude of the humblest may boast about life and make the most of life.

Do you agree that life should be measured in deeds and not in years? Why?
I agree that the life should be measured in deeds and not in years. We are created with a purpose. A purposeful activity is better than idleness.

How can you make the most of your life?
We can make the most of our life by using time thoroughly, serving humanity.

1.2 Make friend.

What was the wish of the two friends?
Ans. The two friends wished to become artists.

What did they decide in order to fulfill their wish?
Ans. They decided that one would work and finance the other, and later selling the painting would support the other.

How did Knigstein support his friend?
Ans. Knigstein supported his friend with his labour.

Why couldn't Knigstein become an artist?
Ans. Knigstein couldn't become an artist because his sensitive fingers were ruined by his rugged manual work.

How did Knigstein's fingers become gnarled?
Ans. Knigstein's fingers became gnarled by his labour.

What has become famous in art gallery?
Ans. The sketch, 'praying hands' has become famous in art gallery.

How does Durer describe Knigstein?
Ans. Durer describes Knigstein as a sacrificing friend.

Why, according to the writer, do we need friends?
Ans. We need friends to share our feelings, understand us and help us.

According to Dale Carnegie, how should one nourish friendship?
Ans. According to Dale Carnegie, one should nourish friendship by becoming interested in friends, accepting them as they are, not losing calm, being open in communication, listening without interruption, being loyal and trusting them always giving positive and supportive advice.

What, do you think; we can learn from this text?
Ans. We can learn from this text 'value of true friendship'.

1.3 Letter's to Anne Frank's Father

How did Cara want the meeting with Otto to be?
Ans. Cara wanted the meeting with Otto to be all emotions, embraces, tears.

When did she begin to dream of seeing Otto?
Ans. She began to dream of seeing Otto when she was 12..

What does Anne compare her life with?
Ans. Anne compares her life with a canary in a cage.

Who was hidden in the annexe?
Ans. Anne, her parents Otto and Edith, her older sister, the Van Dann family and a dentist.

What was Anne's faith even when she was in the concentration camp?
Ans. When Anne was in the concentration camp she believed that people are really good at heart.

"You are right that I receive many letters from young people all over". Guess what sentence of Cara's letter got this response.
Ans. You must be receiving many letters from young people all over.

What was Otto's advice to Cara pertaining to her marriage with a non - Jew person?
Ans. Otto's advice to Cara to get books about Judaism for her finance to read.

Quote the line from the text which show's Otto's hopefulness and positive approach.
Ans. If the end of the world were imminent, I still would plant a tree today.

How does Otto celebrate Cara's birthday?
Ans. Otto celebrated Cara's birthday by planting two trees in Israel in the name of Mrs. Cara Wilson.

What was Cara's feeling when she entered Otto's house?
Ans. When Cara entered Otto's house she felt that she was home. (comfortable).

What was Cara's discovery about her letter writing on seeing the portfolio of her letters?
Ans. On seeing the portfolio of her letters, Cara discovered that her 12 years old's scrawl evolved into an adult's script and then changed to typewritten pages. Masses of exclamations, points and underlining of lines, out pouring of feelings.

What motivated Neiman to be priest?
Ans. Otto's advice to do good for the people motivated Neiman to be a priest.

Why did Vassa lose interest in life?
Ans. Vassa lost interest in life because her father had been killed in front of her.

What news did Fritzi's letter bring?
And. Fritzi's letter brought the news that Otto had left her and all his friends.

What thoughts about Anne's predicament troubled the writer?
Ans. How Anne hid from the Nazi's in a tiny annexe above her father's Amsterdam office building bursting with frustrated life like a canary in a cage. How she remained hidden for two years. How they were caught and imprisoned in a concentration camp. How she still believed after all the had been through, the people are generally good at heart.

Anne's diary was used for two purposes. What are they?
Ans. Anne's diary was used for two purposes as a movie and a play.

What light does Otto's advice to Cara throw on his own nature?
Ans. Otto is bold enough to hear the loss of his daughter and kind enough to help the people like Cara. He possesses a positive attitude towards life. He is practical too.

Why did Otto want to stop correspondence with Vassa?
Ans. Otto wanted to stop correspondence with Vassa because he realized that Vassa was no longer needed his advice.
He was getting old and had problem to get her letters translated in his mother tongue.

Name the person who corresponded with Otto.
Ans. Cara, John Neiman, Sumi and Vassa.

What information about Anne Frank do you get from this text?
Ans. Anne was Otto's daughter. She wrote a diary. She was an eloquent girl of 12 or 13. She hid from the Nazis.
She was like a canary in a cage! She believed that people are really good at heart.

What do you feel about Anne?
Ans. I feel very sorry for her. She must be a girl of matured thinking since inspite of her imprisonment and the torture that followed she did not lose faith in people.

What qualities of Otto impress you most?
Ans. Otto was a loving and caring father. He was a man of positive attitude. he advised many young people to live their lives.
It was he who could see life clearly and accept the things as they are.

What does the text inspire you to do?
Ans. The text inspires me to work to reduce the suffering of others and to make people hopeful about the future of mankind.

1.4 Accept good and Bad with gratitude

What was the old man's profession?
Ans. Fishing was the old man's profession.

What disease was the old man suffering from?
Ans. The old man was suffering from skin cancer.

What things did the old man bring for the narrator's family? Why?
Ans. The old man brought fish, vegetables, fruits, oysters, etc. for the narrator's family to show his gratitude.

What did the narrator learn from the old man?
Ans. The narrator learnt that to accept the bad without complaint and the good with gratitude to God.

What similarity did the narrator find between the Chrysanthemum plant and the old man?
Ans. The narrator found that the Chrysanthemum plant and the old man grew in a adverse conditions.

What, do you think, is the narrator’s attitude towards the old fisherman as a human being?
Ans. The narrator is full of admiration for the old fisherman as a human being, because he never complains about his
hardships but is always full of thanks for God's many blessings. the old fisherman is an inspiration to her and her family.

What, do you think, we can learn from this text?
Ans. We can learn to be thankful for whatever blessing God sends our ways, and not to complain about the hardships or
problems that we have to face each day.

2.1. A thank you for friend

What does the poet wish to do?
Ans. The poet wishes to make a mention of the people who helped him a nice way with a sense of gratitude.

What does the poet say about the verses?
Ans. the poet likes and read the verses till he understood them.

How does he use the chair?
Ans. He sits on the chair with ease and reads his books.

How did the poet become independent?
Ans. The poet became independent by being able to read for himself.

The poet says he is forgetting some persons. Who are they?
Ans. The poet is forgetting the ones who read to him when he didn't know his letters and the ones who taught him the letters so that he could read.

The poet talks about some of his friends who helped him. Make a list of these friends.
Ans. Story writer, poet, artist, carpenter, granny and teacher.

Mention how these friends helped the poet.
Ans. The story - writer supplied him stories. The poet wrote poems and verses for him. the artists drew nice pictures for him. the carpenter made
a chair for him to sit. The granny read out to him stories. The teacher taught him the letters and helped him to read the stories independent.

When does the poet propose to thank his friends?
Ans. The poet wants to thank his friends when he is benefited from them.

Are all of these people friends in the normal sense?
Ans. these people are not friends in the normal sense.

Why does the poet call them friends?
Ans. The poet calls them friends because they work for the poet and try to make his life happy.

2.2 New beginning

How does the writer describe the calmness in the house?
Ans. the writer describes the calmness in the house in the words 'The house is quiet', 'The serenity of the next hour'.

'I brought them up like twins'. who does 'them' refer to?
Ans. 'Them' refers to her children.

How would the children behave while going to school?
Ans. While going to school the children would fight, laugh and argue.

How does the writer describe the distant sound?
Ans. The writer describes the distant sound as warm, pleasant, familiar.

What memories 'flood' in the writer's mind?
Ans. Cricket on the lawn, cricket in the house, table tennis on the dining table, on the wall.

Why was the end of school a momentous occasion?
Ans. The end of school was a momentous occasion because of the painstaking dressing up for the farewell party like straightening a tie, etc.

Do you think the writer feels nostalgic about her family? Highlight some of the occasions as recorded by her.
ans. The writer feels nostalgic about her family. Remembering how she brought up her children, the children going to school fighting, arguing, the distant sound, the quietness of the house brings to her the past memories.

What, do you think, is the purpose of this text?
Ans. The purpose of the text is sharing. here a mother is sharing her memories with the readers.

Look at the title 'New beginning'. What does it suggest? For whom is it a New Beginning? Discuss.
Ans. One phase of life has completed for writer and her children. The second phase of a new life for the writer and her grown up children.

What type of text is this?
Ans. The text is like a newspaper middle which reads like a personal essay.

 2.3 A mother’s goodnight.

What does the writer refer to by the word ‘piece’?
Ans. The writer refers to ‘write up’ by the word ‘piece’.

How were Mom and Dad relaxing?
Ans. Mom and Dad were watching television.

How did Mom express she really needed to retire for the night?
Ans. Mom yawned and stretched that expressed she really needed to retire for the night.

What did Mom do to look younger?
Ans. To look younger Mom put on her night solution and age fighting moisturizers.

Which one of her children did Mom talk to?
Ans. Mom talked to the one up doing home work.

What did Dad say and did it immediately?
Ans. Dad said that he was going to bed and he did go to bed.

Would you agree that most Moms are treated like full time unpaid servants? Why?
Ans. Most Moms are treated like full time unpaid servants because from morning to night they are doing all the work which hired servants would be doing, taken them for granted and don’t pay them not realized the value of their work.

Mention six things Dad could do to ease Mom’s work.
Ans. Set the alarms, watered the plants, turned out the bedside lamps and TV, put some water into dog’s dish, picked up the game pieces left on the table, wrote a note to the grocery store.

Which one of the jobs mentioned in the text could children do? Why do you think they should help their Moms?
Ans. Children could put some water into the dog’s dish and watered the plants. They should help moms in order to get trained in housekeeping and help to reduce mother’s load.

2.4 Buffalo soldier in the heart of Maharashtra.

Why does Jayshree Kamble not want to sell the compost to a company? What is her plan?
Ans. Jayshree Kamble does not want to sell the compost to company because she thinks that the company will not associate her name with the compost.

In what way, has Sankalp helped the woken in the village?
Ans. The Sankalp has helped the women in the following ways:- liaise with the bank, provided necessary knowledge, linkages under PACS programme.

What is the ‘Poorest Areas Civil Society Programme’?
Ans. The PACS programme to empower people in 108 of India’s poorest districts spread over six states.

What are the objectives of Sankalp Manav Sanstha’s leadership programme?
Ans. Self - awareness, development, helping women to identify village problems, frame issues, train the women.

How did Kantabai demonstrate her courage?
Ans. Kantabai registered a case under the Atrocity Act against a shop keeper.

How has SHG benefited women?
Ans. The SHG has benefited the women in the following ways: - Increased income, gave a sense of confidence, learned how to collectively anticipate challenges.

Why did Bhagwat Kadam decide to buy a welding machine?
Ans. Bhagwat Kadam decided to buy a welding machine because she realized that if they had bought all cattle they would have grazing problems. Her husband knew welding.

The text is a newspaper write up. What, do you think, is its purpose?
Ans. The purpose of the text is to make us aware of how NGO’s are helping to empower the rural community.

What, do you think, we can learn from this text?
Ans. We can learn that women in rural areas are trying very hard through self – help group and NGOs to improve the quality of their lives.

Who, do you think, the text is addressed to?
Ans. The text is addressed particularly to city dwellers to acquaint them with the possibilities of development in rural areas and the importance of SHGs in empowering women to improve their condition in life.

3.1 The Race

How does the memory of the race rejuvenate the poet’s being?
Ans. The memory of the race will fills the poet’s with new energy and gives him the determination to try again.

What did each boy hope to show his dad?
Ans. Each boy hoped that he would be the winner.

Why did the crowd laugh at the boy?
Ans. The crowd laughed at the boy because he had lost his step and slipped.

What did the boy wish when he fell the first time?
Ans. The boy wished to disappear when he fell the first time.

What did the father’s face say?
Ans. The father’s face expressed that to get up and win the race.

What did the boy resolve when he rose the third time?
Ans. The boy resolved that he would not quit when he rose the third time.

Why did the crowd cheer the boy?
Ans. The crowd cheered the boy for finishing the race.

What do you learn about the young boy and his father from the poem?
Ans. The boy and his father believe that never give up, keep on trying whether they win or lose. Both of them stand for values of perseverance, determination and courage.

What is the Tone of the Poem?
Ans. The Tone of the poem is full of expectation & excitement. There is also the element of nervousness & fear.

What message does the poem give?
Ans. The poem gives us message that it doesn’t matter how often we fail, we must keep on trying.

3.2 Jyoti Maggu

What, according to Jyoti Maggu, is her Strength?
Ans. According to Jyoti Maggu her lack of vision is her strength.

When did Jyoti lose her Eye sight?
Ans. Jyoti lost her Eye sight at the age of 10, when she was in std – IV.

What would have happened had she attended a special school?
Ans. If she had attended a special school then it would have tarred her with a handicap forever.

How did Bluebells School Handle Jyoti’s Case?
Ans. Bluebell’s School admitted Jyoti Maggu & removed all the steps to support her in academic & in sports.

Describe Jyoti performance in academics & sports?
Ans. Jyoti won laurels in inter – school sporting & also notched up a respectable 73% average in the class XII exam.

What paved the way for her admission to Lady Shri Ram College?
Ans. The respectable average in her CBSE Exam paved the way for her admission to lady Shri Ram College.

Name the various sports events in which she won medals.
Ans.  Running, Jumping, Throwing.

How was the year 2003 very important to Jyoti?
Ans. Jyoti was declared ‘Athlete of the year” in 2003.

What is her Future Plan?
Ans. She wants to become a Sports Journalist for the Electronic Media.

How can the Author say that ‘Jyoti is quite attainable’?
Jyoti’s  goal is quite attainable considering her grit & determination.

Why does she want to be a sports journalist?
She wants to be a sports journalist because she thinks that doing something professional will be more rewarding than a career in parallel port.

3.3 Home run for Mom
In which year did the writer’s professional career come to an end?
The writher’s professional career came to an end in the year 1990.

For how long did the writer play professional baseball?
The writer played professional baseball for five years.

What was the writer’s mother diagnosed with?
The writer’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer.

When did the writer’s wish come true?
The writer’s wish came true when he signed with the Philadelphia Philles for the 1991 season.

How far was Philadelphia from Long Island?
Philadelphia was just three short hours from Long Island.


 When did the writer get married?
The writer got married four months earlier than planned.

After how many weeks did John Morris go to visit his mother?
John Morris went to visit his mother after two weeks.

Why was he shocked to see his mother?
He was shocked to see his mother because her physical condition had deteriorated.

What is it that the writer did not anticipate?
The writer never anticipated the commentator’s story that would unfold.

What did Harry Kalas start explaining?
Harry Kalas started explaining how it had been six long weeks since John’s last hit.

Why did tears fall from John Morris’s and his mother’s eyes?
Seeing a slow motion replay of his dramatic home run, tears fell from the eyes of Morris and his mother. 
Moreover, Kalas commented that this one was probable for him.

How did Morris feel after hitting the ball for a game winning home run?
Morris could feel his heart pumping so fast that he thought it was going to come crashing through his jersey.

What were the sweet words uttered by Kalas?
Kalas uttered the sweetest words that the writer’s mother had ever heard. He said that since the writer’s mother had been quite sick for some time, the last ball that he hit for home run was probably for his mother.

4.1 Buying and Selling. 

What is the difference between Trade & Commerce?
the process of buying, selling or exchanging goods within a country or between countries is called 'Trade'. The Buying, selling goods and services is 'Commerce'.

What are the good characteristics of a Good Trader?
Righteousness and Honest. 

Who is talking in this poem? to Whom?
In this poem the poet is talking to the merchants. 

Who does 'he' refer to in line 1?
In line 1 'he' refers to the poet. 

How can merchants be satisfied?
The merchants can be satisfied in exchanging the gifts of the earth. 

'It will lead some to greed and others to hunger.' Who will be lead to greed and who to hunger? Why?
If the gifts of the earth are not exchanged with love and justice, the traders will be led to greed and the poor buyer to hunger. 

Name the people who come to the market place. 
The toilers of the sea, fields, vineyards, weavers, potters, singers, dancers and the flute players. 

Why should the master spirit of the earth be invoked?
The master spirit of the earth should be invoked to make business righteous and bless the scales for fair calculations. 

For whom will the land and the sea be bountiful?
The land and the sea will be bountiful for the traders who sell the fruits. 

Who are gatherers of fruit and frankincense? 
The singers, dancers and flute players are the gatherers of fruit and frankincense. 

What should the merchant do before leaving the market place?
Before leaving the market place, the merchants should see that no one has gone with empty hands. 

Why will the master spirit of the earth not sleep peacefully/
The master spirit of the earth will not sleep peacefully because the needs of the needy are yet to be fulfilled. 

What is the theme of the poem? Does the poem have a universal truth in its name? Justify your answer?
The theme of the poem is to trade righteously. the poem has a universal truth in its theme. Earth provides everyone without any discrimination. Just as god provides us with the bounties in nature, similarly we should also provide every individual indiscriminately. Thus the poem has a universal appeal. 

4.2 The Cowboy's story


What was the Cowboy’s motto?
The Cowboy’s motto was to make a success of himself by following the principles of Ya Gotta’a for success.

What did the Cowboy learn after he lost millions of dollars?
The Cowboy learnt that once you know and practice the principles of success, they will work for you again and again.

Why did the Cowboy firmly believe that asking would pay off?
The Cowboy firmly believed that asking would pay off because if you are determined you will eventually get the desired results.

In what way is the cowboy a source of inspiration for you?
The Cowboy’s story strongly advocates the principles of success. It proves that mere education or skills or talent is not sufficient for success. These ideas appeal to me and thus are a source of inspiration to me.

What was the interview for?
The interview was for the sales persons. 

What kind of a salesperson did the company need?
The company required salespersons experienced in telemarketing, knew the local market, experienced with the various systems, professional demeanor and a self - starter. 

Which line denotes the Cowboy did not meet the company's need?
------he, just wasn't what I had in mind at all. 

What credentials did Cowboy possess?
The Cowboy possessed degree in agriculture and was a ranch land. 

Why was Cowboy finally hired?
Cowboy was finally hired because he focused on success. 

On what terms was Cowboy appointed on the job?
Cowboy was appointed on the job on straight commission which no base salary. 

What experiences would have made Cowboy a perfect hand for the company?
Business experience, telephone and sales experience would have made cowboy a perfect hand for the company. 

What was the exceptional quality that Cowboy possessed?
The Cowboy possessed an incredible focus on being success. 

What made the Cowboy a success?
Cowboy made success due to his curiosity, his caring for his customer and his company, his positive attitude to success. 

Do you think a salesman's job is easy? Why
A salesman's job is not easy. He has to face many slumps. many doors are slammed in his face. he isn't welcomed everywhere. 

What is positive thinking? How did it work in the life of cowboy?
Positive thinking is feeling confident, hopeful and optimistic. The cowboy believed things were going his way and expected only success. 

What principles would you put into practice in order to be successful?
In order to be successful I would put into practice the following principles:
of being focused, responsible, acting promptly, caring about others, believing in success. 

4.3 On Saville Row 

What was the writer's father?
the writer's father was a professor in history. 

What brought the writer to France?
The writer had attended an international Teacher's programme in France. 

Why did the writer decide to visit Saville Row?
The writer decided to visit Saville Row in order to suit for himself. 

Who greeted the writer in the shop?
Mr. Robinson, a dapper gentleman dressed in a dark suit greeted the writer in the shop. 

What impressed the writer about the shop?
The shop's interior was a model of subdued elegance, which impressed the writer. 

Why did Mr. Robinson look sad when the writer expressed his desire to have a suit for himself?
Mr. Robinson looked sad when the writer had expressed his desire to have a suit for himself because he didn't want to deceive the writer. 

In what words does Mr. Robinson describe the writer's father?
Mr. Robinson described the writer's father as an old and valued customer. 

Why was the writer filled with gratitude for Mr. Robinson?
The writer was filled with gratitude for Mr. Robinson because of his integrity. 

Why did the writer's father want to order a suit on Saville Row?
The father was once complemented by his guide on his work. He was so pleased that he decided to splurge a bit. He went to an expensive tailoring emporium on Saville Row and ordered a suit for himself. 

Do you think Mr. Robinson was right in refusing the order? Why? 
Mr. Robinson was right in refusing the order because the writer's father was an old and valued customer of that shop. The son went to the same shop to get a suit tailored. The shop owner Mr. Robinson told the son they had stopped tailoring suits and used to send the order to Hong Kong. Actually Mr. Robinson valued his customers and didn't want to keep them in the dark. 

The story conveys a message in a very subtle manner. Can you guess the message?
The message is that in business there should be ethics. There should also be honesty, integrity and candour.

5.1 Exercise

What is the effect of exercise on flab?
Exercises crashes and burns flab. 

Why did the poet buy the machine?
The poet bought the machine because he wanted to be trim, fit and lean in 30 days. 

What is the use of ab mats in exercise?
Ab mats is for doing crunches. 

Why was the poet about to give up his exercise?
The poet was about to give up his exercise because he could not reduce his weight despite all his efforts. 

What truth do some people express?
Eat right! Get fit! Die anyway!

What is the poet's belief about God?
The poet believes that God loves all big and small creatures. 

Read the poem silently and list down the things that the poet bought to reduce his weight. 
Machine, Abmats, tramp. 

Make a list of words from the poem that is in capital letters. Why they are written so?
Exercise, Eat Right, Get Fit, Die, PLEASE, AND. for he wants to highlights their importance. 

What is the tone of the poem? Is it serious or light - hearted?
The tone of the poem is light - hearted. he used humour to stress his point of view. 

The poem seems to say no matter how much they exercise, some people remain fat. do you believe it? Give your reasons. 
No, I don't believe it. Exercise does reduce weight, and it is very necessary to keep fit and healthy. 

Do you think that joining a gym is essential for physical fitness? How can you manage your fitness otherwise?
Joining a gym is not essential for fitness. We can achieve fitness by doing Yoga at home, or by taking brisk walks every day, or by cycling or by swimming. 

5.2. Breathe Right and Stay Well

What did people learn from breather Knowles?
People learned from Breather Knowles how to use their lungs properly. 

What testimonial did the doctor give in praise of Knowles?
'I came through the winter without an attack of bronchitis, thanks to your exercise. 

What is the difference between Knowles breathing and that most of ours?
Knowles took four deep breaths a minute and we take 14 to 18 shallow breaths a minute. 

What opens up the chest cavity?
Drawing shoulder blades together immediately opens up the chest cavity. 

What does Knowles suggest to test the 'our capacity'?
To test our capacity, Knowles suggests to take deep breath and to open the mouth wide and blow a paper match held three inches from the lips. 

How can a person climb stairs easily?
A person can climb stairs easily by breathing in on two steps and out on two steps. 

What was Knowles' personal gain in following the advice of Dr. Hanish?
Knowles' personal gain was his cough disappeared in following the advice of Dr. Hanish. 

How are machines treated by men?
Machines are treated by men better than they do treat themselves. 

5.3 A bit of a spot

What did Keryn find on her chin one morning?
Keryn found a big spot on her chin. 

What did father say to Keryn when he came back home?
When Keryn's father came back to home he said that she had found a nice spot for reading. 

What did Keryn notice on Tuesday morning?
Keryn noticed that the spot was bigger on Tuesday morning. 

What did Mrs. Ngeru say to the class on Tuesday? What did Keryn feel? Why?
On Tuesday, Mrs. Ngeru said that "keep your chins up! Keryn felt that it was aimed at her because she was lost in thoughts. 

In the story, you find mother giving many suggestions to Keryn. Make a list of those suggestions. 
Mother has given the following suggestions:
To be careful, Don't et crisps and lollies, Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, Don't keep fingering. 


What upset Keryn on a Monday morning?
Keryn was upset that Monday morning because when she looked at herself in the mirror she observed that the spot on her chin was bigger and could be seen even when she stood right back from her mirror against her bedroom wall.

Why did her father’s comment bother her?
Her father referred to the cozy spot, she had found on the living room sofa, but the very word ‘spot’ made her think of the spot on her chin. This upset Keryn.

How did Jason tease Keryn?
Jason told his sister Keryn in a joking manner that eating raw carrots was good but she had to go slow because, though that particular food may be good for skin, it could also make her teeth grow and her ears get long and floppy, just like a rabbit’s.

In what way do you consider Keryn and Jason as typical teenagers?
Both Keryn and Jason are forever fighting with each other and teasing each other just like typical teenage brothers and sisters. They get satisfaction and delight in pulling each other’s legs. Keryn like a typical teenage girl is so obsessed by the small pimple (spot) on her chin that she keeps looking into the mirror all the time. At the moment her entire life revolved around that spot.

5.4 A Banana a Day

What does this passage tell us?
This passage tells us about the goodness of bananas. 

What did most diabetologists practise and preach in olden days?
They used to practise and preach anti - banana theory. 

Why did they say so?
They said so due to its high carbohydrate content. 

What was the good news about bananas?
The good news was that banana got a place in the nutrition chart. 

Can a diabetic patient have bananas?
A diabetic patient whose blood sugar is under control can have a banana, a day. 

Name the minerals that bananas contains. 
Banana contain sodium and potassium. 

How do sodium and potassium help us?
Low sodium and high potassium help in regulating blood pressure and bringing down strokes. Besides, potassium alone tones up muscles. 

What made banana a culprit?
Banana has a high carbohydrate content. So diabetologists called banana a culprit. 

How does the banana get a place in the nutrition chart?
Nutritionists carried out research for five long years and were convinced of the nutritive values of banana. So they gave it a place in the nutrition chart. 

What minerals did nutritionists trace in banana?
They traced that bananas contained low sodium and high potassium. 

How are low sodium and high potassium contents helpful to us?
Low sodium helps in regulating blood pressure and lowers risk of strokes. High potassium aids in toning up the muscles. 

What do most nutritionists maintain?
Most nutritionists maintain that irrespective of the variety, the most important factor to be considered is the freshness of the fruit. 

There is a 'culprit' in banana. Discuss. 
The anti - banana theory explained that it contained high amount of carbohydrate. This is bad for to diabetic patients. So nutritionists called this organic compound a 'culprit'. 

What was the long - term research? How was is useful? Discuss. 
Nutritionists conducted research studies. They were convinced of banana's nutritive values and included it in the nutrition chart. 

Banana could reduce the 'risk of strokes' and 'tone up' the muscles. Interpret. 
Bananas have low sodium and high potassium contents. Potassium brings down the risk of heart attacks and strengthens the muscles. 

'Freshness' is the most important factor in bananas. Discuss.
Irrespective of the variety in bananas, most nutritionists feel that the most important factor to consider while consuming bananas, is their freshness. 

6.1 Bharat Amar 

What did the first human eyes see?
The first human eyes saw heavenly light. 

What does the poet call his motherland?
The poet calls his motherland all Asia's holy place of pilgrimage. 

Why does the poet address the motherland as World Mother?
He addresses her so because the motherland was the first to give mankind philosophy, sacred lore, knowledge, art and religion. 

What else did the motherland give?
The motherland also gave knowledge, God - love, works, art and various religions to the world. 

How could the grandeur (appearance or style) of motherland be damaged?
Her grandeur could be damaged if she lost freedom, terrorism spread or her unity and integrity is disturbed. 

What does the poet remember?
The poet remembers the golden era of the motherland. 

What is the motherland as a person?
The motherland is the mother of wisdom, worship, works and a nurse of spirit's inward ray. 

What did the first human eyes see when they awoke?
The human eyes saw all Asia's holy place of pilgrimage in their Motherland 

Knowledge thou gav'st to man'. Explain.
The motherland gave man God - love, works, art and various religions. 

When would the people mourn(show deep sorrow)?
The people would mourn when the grandeur of their motherland was marred(disfigure). 

'Where the first human eyes awoke', interpret.
When the universe opened its eyes, it could see the heavenly light. 

What do 'Philosophy' and 'sacred lore' mean?
Here, philosophy means love of wisdom and sacred lore means divine knowledge and tradition. 

'Thou gav'st religion's opened door', Discuss. 
The motherland gave birth to various religions for mankind. 

"How shall we mourn"? Who will mourn and why?
The people of India will mourn because the grandeur of the motherland is marred. 

"Who dare call thee a thing for the pity's grace today? Why is it so?
people dare not call our motherland a thing for pity's grace because she is the true Mother of wisdom, worship, works and a nurse of the spirit's inward ray. 

6.2 Incredible India!

What is this passage about?
This passage is about the authors' exciting experience of visiting a select number of places of tourism in India. 

Who impressed the authors?
A German girl who was one of the visitors impressed them. 

How frequently did the German girl visit India?
She visited India seven times in 10 years. 

What were her remarks about world in general?
She said that in Germany or in other parts of Europe and around the world one visited amusement parks to get thrills. 

What was the girl's opinion about India?
she said that India was one big and incredible theme park in which there were no safety belts and guard railings. 

What does India offer visitors?
India offers visitors might mountains, holy rivers, grand monuments, silent forests, beautiful deserts, romantic backwaters, golden beaches, ancient treasures, cultural cities, diverse cuisine, etc. 

What makes India a difficult destination?
India is so vast and has so many different faces that it is almost intimidating and often seen as a difficult destination. 

What is the attempt of the authors and his party in this text?
Their attempt is to build a holiday around a few themes in select parts of India. 

Where did they first go?
They first went to Kerala. 

Which village in Kerala did they visit?
They went to see the beauty of Kumarakom. 

How did the village look like?
It was a land with bounty of nature with riot (excessive or varieties) of vegetation. 

Where, in India, did the authors and other meet?
They met in the charming little town of Mandu in Madhya Pradesh. 

The German girl had a deep love for India. How do you know this?
The fact that the German girl visited India seven times in 10 years, tells that she had deep love for India. 

Why is India incredible?
India is a big theme park in itself in which there are no safety belts and guard railings. Besides, just travelling on an Indian bus or train is an exciting and colourful as any joy ride. 

Why do the authors say that India is a 'difficult' destination?
They say that India is so vast and has so many different faces that it is almost intimidating and often seen as a difficult destination. 

What was the programme of the authors and the visitors?
Their programme was to visit a few themes in select parts of India to build a holiday. 

What was the small village Kumarakom blessed with?
Kumarakom was a quaint little village with a vibrant and living network of canals, estuaries and lakes. The land had a bounty of nature with a riot of vegetation. 

6.3 India, the holy land.

Apart from being a visitor, what two other roles did Maya play in the author's life?
Initially a visitor who later became a knitting teacher and a good friend. 

What was the effect of Maya's acquaintance of the author?
it showed in the author a deep interest in Tibet. 

What is special about Yerlong Valley?
Yerlong valley is the cradle of Tibetan civilization. 

What contrast did the author find in Brahmaputra in Tibet and in India?
In Tibet, the Brahmaputra flowed by timidly whereas the river flowed by in rapid gush in Assam, India. 

Describe the old lady that the author saw at the monastery. 
The old lady was in her 90's. She walked with a support of a stick.

Why did the author feel embarrassed?
The author felt embarrassed when the old lady pointed at her and said something in Tibetan to the boy. 

How does the author describe Maya?
As a young Tibetan lady with almost white skin, dove eyes, little flat nose and two long plaits. 

Why was the old lady so thankful to India?
The old lady was thankful to India because India has sheltered Dalai Lama, their Living God. 

What, do you think, is the purpose of this text?
The purpose of this text is to inculcate a sense of gratitude among the children towards the country that helps them in a unique way. 

What can you learn from this text?
From this text we can learn that one must respect a place, person or a thing that helps one. 

6.4 The Appointed Day.

How does India stand forth after becoming a free nation?
After becoming a free nation India stands forth awake, vital, free and independent. 

What was the condition of most of our people when India got freedom?
When India got freedom, the condition of most of our people was sorrow - stricken. 

What does Nehru say about the Father of our Nation?
According to Nehru, the Father of our Nation held aloft the torch of freedom and lighted up the darkness that surrounded the people. 

What are the challenges before people in free India?
To bring freedom, justice, prosperity and opportunity to the common man, peasants and workers of India to fight and end poverty, ignorance and disease. 

What role does Nehru visualize for India in the world?
Co - operation in furthering peace, freedom and democracy. 

What does 'appointed day' refer to?
15th August, 1947.

Why does Nehru called it 'the appointed day'?
Nehru calls it 'the appointed day' because India was destined to get freedom. She was awake after along slumber. 

What does Nehru mean by long slumber?
The period when India was ruled by the Britishers. 

Nehru refers to 'our brothers and sisters'. Who are they?
The people of Pakistan. 

The text is a message to the press given on the occasion of our Independence Day. Don't you think the message reads like a speech or address? Why?
In those days there was no TV and hardly anyone had radios. So this message had to be in the form of an address or a speech. It was a message to the citizens of India. 

What do you understand from the word the 'presses'?
Press = media = newspaper. 

7.1 The Wakeful Dark

What happens when darkness lays the house to sleep?
When darkness lays the house to sleep then the nightly creatures come out. 

What do the spiders do?
The spiders sprawl and spin their heads. 

Where does the snail weave?
The snail weaves near the cold fresh dews. 

How does the cat move in the dark?
The cat moves in the dark stealthily (acting with quiet) and like a thief. 

How does darkness make night bustle with life?
Night makes all the nocturnal (Nocturnal creatures generally have highly developed senses of hearing and smell, and specially adapted eyesight.) creatures come out to find their food and hunt animals. 

Do you think the title 'The Wakeful Dark' is appropriate to the poem? Why?
Yes. 'The Wakeful Dark' is appropriate to the poem. Because some animals and creatures are active during the dark. 

'Then who says night's the time for sleep?' What does the line suggest?
It suggests that night is not necessarily for rest of sleep. Some animals and creatures work at night. 

Name the different creatures from the extract.
Creatures mentioned in the extract are: the snail, the cat, the vole, the rat, the rabbit, the field – mouse and the owl.

Who lurks in the shadows like a thief?
The hungry – eyed at lurks in the shadows like a thief.

Why does the snail fear the sun?
The snail fears the sun because it is very tender and the sun is very hot and fierce for it.

Fill in the blanks with the compound adjectives.
i.                  ___________ leaf.           Ii. ____________owls.
Wind – blown leaf, moon – white owls.

Pick out an example of Personification from the extract.
But the moon’s shining harmless eye.



Who sees the snail’s shining track?
No one except the moon sees the snail’s shining track.

How does the darkness make the night bustle with life?
At night, when darkness prevails, the nocturnal creatures set out to work, thus making the night bustle with life.

Quote two examples from the extract to justify that the poet breaks the myth that night is the time for sleep and rest.
Eg. (1) Shadowed and soft the grey mice creep.
To find the crumbs that we have dropped.
Eg. (2) The frail and hunch – legged spiders sprawl.
And spin their threads as fine as rain.

From the poem pick out two compound adjectives.
Hunch – legged, hungry – eyed

When darkness lays the house to sleep. (Name and explain the figure of speech)
The given sentence a Personification as darkness is attributed with the human ability of laying (putting) to sleep.

7.2 Of mice and snakes

Where did the narrator's family live?
The narrator's family lives in New South Wales.

Why did Dad take up banana plantation?
Dad took up banana plantation because he found the work of a sheep shearer very hard.

Why did Dad like snakes?
Dad liked snakes because they ate the mice that infest the banana bunches.

How did Dad feed on Old Tom?
Dad would endeavour to stun the mice with the back of his can knife, he would then take his offering to Old Tom.

What did Dad take pleasure in?
Dad would show old Tom to his neighbours and he had the ability to stroke it.

What raised envy in the growers?
Tom ate a number of mice that raised envy in the growers.

What happened when Dad reached into the stump?
When Dad reached into the stump with the mince balls in his hand then the girl snake suddenly coiled up, raised its neck and viciously struck Dad's arm, three or four times rapid succession.

What, do you think, we can learn from this text?
We can learn from this text that the snakes are farmer's friends.

What, according to you, is the purpose of this text?
According to me, the purpose of this text is to remove superstition about snakes.

7.3 Leopard on the spot. 

Whose services did the Press avail of to meet Mr. Spots?
The press availed services of porcupine to meet Mr. Spots.

What was the Press searched for?
The Press searched for guns and tranquillizer darts.

What was the injustice done to Mr. Spot's family?
25 of Spot's family had been cramped into a smaller space.

How does Mr. Spot justify their supposedly belief visits to human habitation?
Mr. Spot justifies that those human inhabitations were their territory.

Give two phrases from the text to show Mr. Spot's anger.
Snarls menacingly, twitching his whiskers in indignation

What territories belonging to Mr. Spot are encroached upon?
Arey colony, Film city, Powai and SGNP.

How does Mr. Spot react to noise? Why?
The spot couldn't tolerate noise any longer and fled away because he would have gone neurotic or deaf or both.

What precautionary measure is the forest department taking? Why?
The forest department is planning to wall the periphery of SGNP so that animals inside can live safely.

Why are leopards making sensational headlines in newspapers now more than ever?
Population is increasing and so they are encroaching into forest land as human settlement areas are very crowded and there is not more space. So leopards attack man and thus they make headlines.

Does the text throw light on the ecological imbalance? Support your answer.
Yes. Population is increasing, forests are decreasing, wild animals are becoming homeless, animals don't get enough protection, and they die due to ill effects caused to them.

What valuable suggestions would you offer for peaceful co - existence between man and beast?
Population control, giving the animals freedom, Man controlling his greets, Selfishness.

7.4. Watching birds
Why do birds migrate?
Birds migrate for survival in a suitable climate.

Look at the title of the text is it appropriate?
Yes it is appropriate since it talks about watching birds as a hobby.

Why have birds been a source of delight?
Birds have been a source of delight because of their beauty and their power of flight.
Which bird is compared to the Indian Garuda? What is unique about it?
Phoenix. It a mythical bird.
How are eagles and owls considered in some countries?
Eagle in Australia was considered a divinity. Golden Eagle is the National bird in the U.S.A. Owls is considered as birds of ill ominous since ancient times.

What is the 'Soma'?
The 'Soma' was an intoxicating liquid used as a drink in the Vedic Period.
How did ancient poets use birds in their writings?
The ancient poets have used birds not only as a symbols but also as other authentic forms of otherness in their compositions.

What shows the tight grip of birds on human imagination?
The incredible number of stories written around birds unfailingly proves the strong hold of birds on human imagination.




Social networking good or bad
A social network is an online service where the focus is on building and creating business in an easier way. Social Network nowadays is already a part of people’s lives. All of us use social networking sites in different ways, But, are we aware in the good and the bad about social networking?

POSITIVE FACTORS
On a positive note, social media allows kids to practice life behind a safety curtain, allowing them to share personal information with their friends and not have to deal with their reactions right away. This could be a plus point for shy kids and could help to get them out of their shells.
Many teachers are taking advantage of these sites, and are creating accounts for themselves so that they might hold their students accountable for actions, and also update them on assignments, tests, etc. In fact, one particular open-source networking site, Elgg, allows students and teachers alike to create profiles, blogs, and is entirely intended to enhance the educational experience by giving students a place to go outside of class to contact teachers, keep current on assignments, projects, and quizzes, and to ensure, to the best of their abilities, that they do not shirk responsibility; if anything, the adaptability of networking sites is doing more good for education than anything.
Sarojini Naidu College lecturer Seema Raizada said it is wrong to say that students are harmed by being active on social networking sites. In present time, world is becoming a global village and social networking sites are the platforms which provide a student to learn, to understand, to communicate. Now a day it is seen that students have knowledge and active participation in social, political issues which in earlier times was difficult for a student to achieve.

NEGATIVE FACTORS
Social networking sites are acting as a major distraction for students as they are spending too much time on them, instead of utilising their time on books, newspapers and other educational resources. The social networking sites generally contain shallow and trivial information in comparison to other sources of learning. Parents in particular and schools in general are worried over the future prospects of their children as they spend much of their valuable time on social networking sites.
Both, schoolteachers and parents are also facing problems with this increasing popularity of social networking sites among students. In some of the schools, the authorities have strictly warned students not to be a part of them otherwise they would face the music.

While playing games, listening to music or reading books, a student devotes just that much time while he is doing the activity, but on social networking sites, the student even when not browsing only thinks about the next update or comment he or she might post which is more harmful.
Many students give reasons that by social networking they enhance their knowledge but in reality social networking sites only impart trivial knowledge, but in the name of that knowledge students waste time on so called gossips instead of doing something productive or educative.
While many parents could be doing more important tasks, they prefer surfing and browsing on social networking sites. Parents cannot teach their wards by giving example if they themselves do not follow one.

In a research carried out on the school and college students to study affects of social networking, it was found that young people, who use video games and social media more frequently, tend to have more stomach-aches and suffer from sleeping problems along with anxiety and depression. According to the research, the more frequently young people used social networking sites; the more likely they were going to develop an anti-social personality disorder. It is also said they were likely to suffer from paranoia, anxiety and alcohol abuse. The survey also analysed the studying habits of middle school, high school and college students. It was found that most students were only able to stay focused on their studies for about three minutes before engaging in some kind of communication like texting or mobile phone apps. The students who logged into their social networking sites profile during studying ended up doing worse on their exams than those who did not.
It suggested that the parents should have constant, open conversations with their kids about how they are using technology, and not make judgments so they feel comfortable discussing how they behave with other kids online. This could make children more aware that what they say online can hurt others and help them to avoid cyber-bullying.

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