Don’t take English for granted

Get rid of the myth that the Class 12 English Board exam does not need any writ­ing prac­tice

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - HT Education - - Front Page - Mon­ica Kalra

The sub­ject English in your cur­ricu­lum might not pose the prob­lem of pass­ing or se­cur­ing rea­son­ably de­cent marks, but if ne­glected, it can be the dis­as­trous for many a stu­dent. It can act as a cat­a­lyst and pro­vide both the nec­es­sary im­pe­tus to your re­sult as well as bring the per­cent­age crash­ing down de­pend­ing on your ap­proach to the sub­ject.

The Boards be­gin with the English exam and since ‘well be­gun is half done,’ let’s see what can be done to make you smile as you walk out of the ex­am­i­na­tion hall on March 1, 2013. For starters, we have to get rid of the myth that English does not need any writ­ten prac­tice. Key writ­ing skill el­e­ments such as for­mat, or­gan­i­sa­tion, ex­pres­sion, ad­her­ing to word limit and time man­age­ment can be learnt with­out prac­tice. You will be able to op­ti­mise your out­put in the exam only with reg­u­lar prac­tice. And since what to say and how to say it go hand in hand, con­tent build­ing for the exam is also es­sen­tial. It’s never too late to read up on cer­tain im­por­tant so­cial is­sues which will not only make your con­tent more rel­e­vant but also equip you with the req­ui­site vo­cab­u­lary.

Note-mak­ing is of­ten mis- un­der­stood by the stu­dents. It is im­por­tant that you solve a few note-mak­ing ques­tions and get them checked by your teacher. As you read the pas­sage, ask your­self what the pas­sage is about and put that down as the head­ing of your note-mak­ing ex­er­cise. Next, you should think of the var­i­ous head­ings un­der which that topic has been devel­oped and those then be­come your sub­head­ings. Please re­mem­ber that para­graph­wise sub­head­ings have to be avoided as it could re­sult in rep­e­ti­tion and over­lap­ping of ideas. Us­ing ab­bre­vi­a­tions is manda­tory but limit them to six or seven.

Fi­nally, to write the sum­mary of the given pas­sage, ex­pand each sub­head­ing and its points into mean­ing­ful sen­tences.

Lit­er­a­ture com­prises a ma­jor chunk of the pa­per and must be given the at­ten­tion it de­serves. Read the chap­ters a num­ber of times so that the facts sink in. The ex­am­iner is look­ing for de­tails, there­fore, quote from the text to cre­ate the im­pres­sion of a per­son well versed with the text. Don’t make the mis­take of nar­rat­ing the en­tire story in ev­ery long an­swer ques­tion; your an­swer should ex­plain the ques­tion asked.

A neat pre­sen­ta­tion will al­ways give you an edge over oth­ers. So let’s make it easi- er for the ex­am­iner by writ­ing leg­i­bly, in para­graphs and un­der­lin­ing the main points. Fur­ther, all ques­tions of a sec­tion must be done to­gether.

A high score in English is com­pletely pos­si­ble pro­vided that you give the sub­ject its due. Read a lot, write some and do well.

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