12th English : The Chair
Unit 5.1 > The Chair
a) How responsible and capable are you at home?
I am responsible and capable at home. I normally do not expect others to do my personal work. Moreover I help others in their work.
b) Can you iron your clothes and arrange them? Can you replace a tube light?
Yes, I can iron my own clothes and arrange them. I can replace a tube light.
We shouldn’t live a life of entitlement. We must share a few responsibilities to keep our house clean and perfect.
Solve the clues given below and complete the cross word.
1. You can watch programmes, matches and news on it
Ans ; Television
4. You can lie on this and sleep
Ans ; bed
6. You can sit on this and relax by yourself
Ans ; armchair
11. You can store all your books here
Ans ; book self
12. This can give you light when it is dark
Ans ; lamp
1. You can sit around it
Ans ; table
2. You can put flowers in this
Ans ; vase
3. You can sit on this with two other people comfortably
Ans ; sofa
5. You can do your writing work on this
Ans ; Desks
7. This can cover a small space and decorate the floor
Ans ; mat
8. You can put all your clothes in here
Ans ; wardrobe
9. You can look into this to see yourself
Ans ; mirror
10. You can sit on this, it has 3 legs.
Ans ; stool
- portly – stocky
- spluttered – cackled, make a series of short sounds.
- impudent – disrespectful
- expounded – explained
- languorously – lethargically
- hordes – crowd, masses
- exasperatedly – annoyingly
- splendour – magnificence
- paraphernalia – things,stuffs
- bereavement – mourning, grief
- gait – pace
1. Answer the following questions in one or two sentences each based on your understanding of the story.
a) What was put on the family agenda?
How to get a chair was put on the family agenda.
b) Who visited the family?
The maternal uncle visited the family.
c) Describe the stool that the narrator’s family had.
The stool measured a mere three-fourth foot. If a person did not sit properly on it, it would topple over.
d) What was Pedanna’s suggestion to their father?
Pedanna suggested to her father to buy a chair from the town.
e) What was offered to Maamanaar by their mother?
Their mother offered to Maamanaar a tumbler of butter milk mixed with asafetida.
f) Why were the two chairs compared to Rama-Lakshmana?
The two chairs were compared to Rama-Lakshmana because the two chairs were identical to each other.
g) When did the children shy away from the chair?
The children were afraid to sit on the chair. A dead body of an important person was kept on the chair. So they shied away from the chair.
h) How did Maamanaar handle the chair at home?
Every day morning Maamanaar wiped the chair neatly. If it was to be shifted from one place to another he himself carried it. He used to keep it down gently
2. Answer the following questions in about three to four sentences each.
a) What happened to the visitor when he sat on the stool?
The visitor was the sub-judge. So he was offered the stool to sit on. He could not keep the balance well and he fell down with a thud.
b) Why did the family find it difficult to make a chair?
In the village they did not have a chair to take as a model. Moreover there was no carpenter in the village who could make a chair. So the family found it difficult to make a chair.
c) What was grandmother’s suggestion of wood ? Why ?
Grandmother suggested to have teak wood for the chair. It would be light to carry and it would be sturdy.
d) How was the chair made and how did the villagers react to it?
A carpenter was called from the neighbouring village to make two chairs – one for the narrator’s family and one for his uncle. When the villagers came to know about the chair they came in group to see that.
e) When did the children get over the fear of sitting on the chair?
After the chair had been used to keep the dead body the children were afraid to sit on the chair. The chair was washed well. When a guest came he was asked to sit on the chair and he sat on it. That removed the fear from the children.
f) Why did Maamanaar hand over the chair to the villagers to retain it?
The villagers used the chair to keep the dead bodies on the chair. Maamanaar thought that it would not be proper to use it after using it for the dead body. Moreover the villagers needed a chair for that purpose. So he handed over the chair to the villagers.
3. Answer the following in a paragraph of 100–150 words each.
a) Narrate the humorous incidents that happened in the author’s home before and after the arrival of the chair.
Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change our lives forever.
Rajanarayanan, popularly known as Ki. Ra is a Tamil folklorist and a prolific writer. His short story ‘Naarkali’ has been translated to English as ‘The Chair’. In this short story he created a situation where people were not much aware of chair. The family members decided to make a chair for the family. But they had neither a chair to take as a model nor a carpenter in the village. The carpenter from a neighbouring village was invited to have a discussion about making a chair. As the discussion was in progress their maternal uncle came to their house. The uncle also wanted to have a chair for himself. So it was decided to make two chairs in black wood. When the chairs arrived one chair was sent to uncle’s house. After a few days an important person died. The villagers asked the chair to keep the dead body. After this incident children were afraid to sit on the chair. When a guest came he sat on it. That removed the fear from the children. One night again the neighbours came to their house to get the chair for funeral. Pedanna told them that they had given the chair to his uncle. After many days the narrator visited his uncle’s house. He saw his uncle sitting on the floor. His uncle explained that he kept the chair for the purpose of the funeral. The narrator hurried home to convey the news to his family members. But he was not sure whether to take it positively or negatively.
Just as we were about to caution the sub-judge, he fell down with a thud and rolled over
b) Write character sketches of Maamanaar and Pedanna.
Don’t take a permanent decision for your temporary emotions.
Rajanarayanan, popularly known as Ki. Ra is a Tamil folklorist and a prolific writer. His short story ‘Naarkali’ has been translated to English as ‘The Chair’. The family discussed the problem of making a chair with a carpenter. As the discussion was in progress their maternal uncle came to their house. He sat down on his usual place and the mother gave his favourite butter milk. He always enjoyed drinking the butter milk made from their milchcow. The cow had been given by the uncle to their mother. The uncle also wanted to have a chair for him. His love for his sister should be mentioned here. His sister respected him. He gifted the cow which he himself had bought. He always kept his dignity. At the end he kept the chair for the use of the villagers because he realised the need for it. Pedanna was the brother of the narrator. He had his opinion on any subject. He suggested that they could get a chair from the town.When the villagers came regularly to have the chair to keep the dead bodies Pedanna took the final decision. Pedanna sent the villagers to his uncle’s house and their problem came to an end.
Pedanna finally thought of an idea. We kept it to the two of us.
a. Find out the synonym of the underlined word in each of the following sentences.
1. Just as we thought our chuckles had subsided.
Ans ; diminished
2. Our father rejected it, saying it wouldn’t be sturdy.
Ans ; strong
3. Anna would say with an impudent smile.
Ans ; disrespectful
4. A silver tumbler of buttermilk seasoned with asafetida.
Ans ; mixed
5. A few people from the house of bereavement stood outside.
Ans ; grief
b. Find out the antonym of the underlined word in each of the following sentences.
1. The anticipation of this imagined separation only increases their fondness for the calf.
Ans ; ignorance
2. Fortuitously, a guest visited our house.
Ans ; unfortunately
3. There he was sitting in splendour on his chair.
Ans ; simplicity
4. Maamanaar was unmatched.
Ans ; inferior
5. He greeted me with his usual smile and banter.
- small talk
Ans ; flattery
c. Words can be combined to form compound nouns. Compound nouns often have a meaning that is different, or more specific, than the two separate words. The elements in a compound noun are very diverse parts of speech.
Some compound words from the story have been listed below.
|Noun + Adjective
Identify the correct combination of the following compound words.
|noun + verb
|noun + noun
|noun + verb
|gerund + noun
|verb + adverb
|noun + gerund
|adverb + verb
|adjective + noun
|verb + noun
|noun + adjective
d. Look at the following sentence from the text.
- “The whole house spluttered into giggles before things settled down”.
- The word “spluttered” is the blended form of splash and sputter.
- A portmanteau is a type of blend word in which the beginning of one word is combined with the final part of another word. Let’s take a look at some of the most common portmanteaus in English.
alphanumeric = alphabetic + numeric
brunch = breakfast + lunch
camcorder = camera + recorder
mechatronics = mechanics + electronics
newscast = news + broadcast
smog = smoke + fog.
Now, Blend the following words.
- binary + digit = bit
- electronic + mail = email
- foreign + exchange = forex
- motor + pedal = moped
- parachute + troop = paratroop
e. The term euphemism refers to polite, indirect expressions that replace words and phrases considered harsh and impolite, or which suggest something unpleasant.
- When we wish to refer to a person as an old, we use the term “senior citizen” instead of ‘old’.
Replace the underlined word / expressions with possibly polite forms.
- The culprit was sent to jail. – house of correction
- Dheeraj is unemployed. – in between work
- I saw a disabled man. – differently abled
- Subsidies are given to the poor. – underprivileged
- Elambrathi has a second-hand car. – pre-owned
a) The medical graduates take oath to dedicate their ______ to the service of humanity.
Ans : life
b) The ______ of the patient should be the doctor’s greatest concern.
Ans : health
c) The would-be graduates promise to practise their profession with ______ and dignity.
Ans : conscience
d) They should respect the ______ of the patients.
Ans : secrets
e) The pledge is also to treat the patients without any ______.
Ans : discrimination
a) Now it’s your turn to speak against the motion “Wars create more problems than they solve.” Express your views with valid points.
Wars solve problems because they end the untold agonies and indescribable hardships of the people. The tyrannical reign heaps trials and tribulations on the helpless. The people whose fundamental rights are suppressed long for peace which is denied by the despot. They are exploited and oppressed to appease him. Their inability to fight against the establishment crushes their spirit and desire to live. Won’t you agree with me if I assert that the only way to terminate their torment and torture is to eliminate the repressive ruler? In this way, war solves the problems and does not create more problems. The Bangladesh Liberation war was an armed conflict sparked by self-determination movement. India supported the movement and emerged victorious by ending the 1971 Bangladesh genocide. So let me reiterate that wars solve problems by bringing back smiles on the faces of the oppressed and suppressed.
b) Conduct a debate for and against the motion, “Mobile phone – a big boon”
Supporting the motion : Mobile phone – a big boon
Mobile phone is the greatest wonder of science. It makes communication easy and instant. It is of a great help during emergency. It saves the life of the accident victims when we call for 108 ambulance service. Besides, human relationship is strengthened as well as smoothened by mobile phone. Personal requests, family invitations, sincere apologies, emergency meeting etc. are made possible.
Opposing the motion : Mobile phone – a bane
Mobile phone is a bane not a boon. It consumes our precious time as we are tempted to talk for a long time. The immense joy of personal meetings is missing and sometimes relationship becomes strained because of loss of personal touch. Speaking on the mobile phone while driving the vehicle causes accidents. Some young people use the phone while crossing the road or walking on the railway track. They run the risk of meeting with accidents. Sending misleading information, taking photos without other’s knowledge and permission, threatening others, playing video games etc. are the ill-effects of mobile phone.
c) Organize a class debate on the motion. ‘The advantages of social websites’. (Use the expressions for arguments like – First, firstly, I mean, My point is, In my opinion, Let me consider, etc.)
For the motion : The advantages of Social Websites
Social websites are the platforms like forums where one can share pictures, videos and update texts and send them to their dear and dear ones. The subject matter or videos can go viral in a short time. We can have interactions non-stop on websites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Let me enumerate the advantages. First, we can stay connected with friends and families. We can recall and recollect fond memories, share family photos and social events with them at the same time. Second, it enables us to come into contact entirely with new people and share our interests, concerns and joys. Third, it proves to be an attractive advertisement for companies. Actors and musicians can reach out a large number of people. No doubt information spreads fast. At times it assists the law enforcing agency to catch the criminals.
Against the motion : The disadvantages of Social Websites
I totally disagree with the view that there are only advantages in using social websites. First of all social websites are used to spread misleading and malicious information. It may cause unnecessary problems. Secondly, it is used to ruin relationship and pave way for breaking family ties. Thirdly, cyber-crime is on the increase – especially innocent kids are targeted. Dreaded games like the Blue Whale entice them, and ultimately detaching them from the websites becomes impossible. Finally it is used to extract money through advertisements of fake jobs. In my opinion the disadvantages of social websites are greater than advantages.
a) Read the following passage carefully and answer the following questions.
Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into the environment that cause harm to the ecosystem. The different kinds of pollution are air pollution, water pollution and land pollution. The release of various gases, finely divided solid particles, or liquid droplets that escape into the atmosphere to disperse and dilute in the environment is called air pollution. Modern society is also concerned about specific types of pollutants, such as noise pollution, light pollution, and plastic pollution.
Particulate Matter (PM), also known as particle pollution, is a complex mixture of extremely small particles and liquid droplets that get into the air. These particles if inhaled can affect health. The impact of PM 2.5 is particularly high in South Asia. Outdoor pollution is caused by a variety of pollutants like public and private vehicles, waste burning in the open, power production industries and construction and even cigarette smoking in public places.
Presently, air pollution is a major and growing risk factor for ill health in India. Delhi is one of the most air polluted cities in India. The air in the city as well as areas surrounding it has worsened to extremely hazardous levels in the recent years. This year’s pollution level is the worst in four years. Several studies have shown that poor air quality is a cause for many health issues among people with lower respiratory disorders with symptoms like dry cough, breathlessness, wheezing, chest discomfort, serious lung infections and cardio vascular diseases. Some studies throw light on the fact that about 16 per cent of the deaths worldwide in 2015 were due to pollution.
Air Masks are an option to protect oneself outdoor. Air masks can be used while commuting or while one is exposed to a polluted area. Some of these masks also include a layer of Activated carbon to filter the air. They protect us from suspended air particles and particulate matter up to the size of 2.5 microns and above. Their usage is limited to some days and should be disposed off after their prescribed duration of usage. The price for air masks starts from Rs 100 and can go up to Rs 500 and more.
We have to take active measures to control pollution and protect ourselves to lead a healthy and pollution free life.
1. What is meant by pollution? Mention the different kinds of pollution.
Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into the environment. The different kinds of pollution are air pollution, water pollution and land pollution.
2. How does Particulate matter cause air pollution?
Particulate matter is a complex mixture of extremely small particles and liquid droplets that get into air. If inhaled, the particles can affect health.
3. Identify three major causes of pollution in air.
Burning waste in the open, power production industries, public and private vehicles are the three major causes of pollution in air.
4. Name the types of pollution we encounter now.
Air pollution, water pollution and land pollution are the types of pollution we encounter now.
5. What sort of health issues do people face due to air pollution?
Due to air pollution people face lower respiratory disorders with symptoms like dry cough, breathlessness, wheezing, chest discomfort, serious lung infections and cardio vascular diseases.
6. How can we protect ourselves outdoor from air pollution?
We can protect ourselves from air pollution by wearing air masks.
7. Suggest a suitable title to the passage.
Air Pollution and Wearing Masks.
8. Identify the meaning of the word similar to the one used in the fourth para:
- emerging – growing
- filtering – cleaning
- floating – suspended
- falling – droplet
b) Read the following information given in the table below and answer the questions
a) The number of stations between Chennai Central and Hazrat Nizamudin is _______.
Ans : eight
b) The train is expected to reach _______ around 8.45 PM.
Ans : Nagpur
c) Between _______ the train runs at its maximum speed.
- Bhopal and Gwalior
- Bhopal and Jhansi
- Bhopal and Hazarat Nizamudin
- Bhopal and Agra
Ans : Bhopal and Jhansi
d) Almost _______ the train reaches Vijayawada.
- the day after
- around early morning
- late night
- around noon
Ans : around noon
e) People prefer the Rajadhani Express to travel from Chennai to reach the capital because _______.
- it reaches the destination on the same day.
- the charge is reasonable.
- the train halts at ten stations.
- it is the shortest route from Chennai to New Delhi.
Ans : it is the shortest route from Chennai to New Delhi.
Non-finite verb (also known as a verbal) is the term to describe a verb that does not show tense. In other words, it is a verb form, which does not function as a verb.
There are three verbals– gerunds, infinitives and participles.
All these are formed from verbs, but are never used alone as action words in sentences. Instead verbals function as nouns, adjectives, and adverbs.
The gerund ends in –ing and is actually a verb form but it functions as a noun too.
- Jumping is fun. (subject to a verb)
- My son enjoys skiing. (Object to a verb)
- Mrs. Kala has a unique way of teaching. (Object to a preposition)
- It is no use crying. (In Opposition to a pronoun)
The Infinitive is the base form of a verb with ‘to’ –( to + verb). Usually it functions as a noun, although it can also function as an adjective or an adverb.
- To jump is fun. (noun : Subject of the verb ‘is’)
- My son likes to ski. (noun : direct object of the verb ‘like’)
- I have a suggestion to offer. (adjective modifying suggestion)
- The manager called her to give a last warning. (adverb modifying the verb ‘called’)
A participle is a verb that ends in –ing (Present particle) or-ed, _d, _t, _en, _n, (past particle). Participles may function as adjectives, describing or modifying nouns.
- The dancing parrots entertained the crowd.
- The wrecked sailboat washed up on shore.
Underline the gerunds in the following sentences.
- Boys love playing cricket.
- I love eating ice creams.
- Jessie enjoys bothering other
- Painting is an interesting hobby.
- Dancing gives me joy.
Use the gerundial form of the verb in the brackets and fill in the blanks.
1. ________ (exercise) is good for health.
Ans ; Exercising
2. ________ (fly) a kite is fun.
Ans ; Flying
3. ________ (shop) is my favourite hobby.
Ans ; Shoping
4. My friend waited for the ________ (meet).
Ans ; metting
5. Huckleberry Finn was responsible for __________ (signal).
Ans ; signaling
Fill in the blanks with the correct infinitives.
1. Deva forgot _________ the letter.
Ans ; to post
2. The doctor advised the patient __________ his medicines without fail.
Ans ; to take
3. Rajesh went to the airport _______ his friend.
Ans ; to receive
4. The bear climbed up the tree _______ the honey.
Ans ; to drink
5. The boys went to the forest _____________ birds.
Ans ; to watch
6. I tried hard _______ both ends meet.
Ans ; to make
7. The archaeologists are trying __________ the ruins of Keelady.
Ans ; to study
8. Solar energy is used ________ electricity.
Ans ; to generate
9. ________ concession, you have to apply well in advance.
Ans ; To get
10. We have plans ________to London during summer vacation.
Ans ; to go
Combine each of the following pairs of sentences using participles. The first one is done for you.
Example: I didn’t know what to do. I phoned the police.
Not knowing what to do, I phoned the police.
1. The baby cried. She was feeling sleepy.
Feeling sleepy the baby cried.
2. He lived alone. He had forgotten everybody.
Having forgotten everybody he lived alone.
3. She walked out. She was smiling.
She walked out smiling.
4. The child says he needs attention. He shouts loudly.
Shouting loudly the child says she needs attention.
5. I threw the pen. It was broken.
Throwing the pen caused it to break.
I threw the broken pen.
6. His coat is tattered. It needs mending.
His tattered coat needs mending.
7. I heard the noise. I turned around.
Hearing the noise I turned around.
8. He was dissatisfied. He quit his job.
Being dissatisfied he quit his job.
9. The politician entered the campus. He was accompanied by many comrades.
Accompanied by many comrades the politician entered the campus.
10. The girl entered the room. She was singing a song.
Singing a song the girl entered the room
Articles and Determiners
Complete the following exercise using a / an / the / ‘o’ (no article) in the underlined space where appropriate. Change capital letters to small letters at the beginning of a sentence if necessary.
According to (1) the National Weather Report, cyclones are winds circulating (2) ‘o’ counter clockwise in (3) the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in (4) the southern Hemisphere. Cyclones are usually accompanied by (5) ‘o’ stormy weather. Tornadoes and hurricanes are types of cyclones. (6) The hurricane is (7) a cyclone that forms over (8) the tropical oceans and seas. (9) The hurricane rotates in (10) the shape of (11) an oval or a circle. (12) The Hurricane Andrew, which hit (13) the coasts of Louisiana and Southern Florida in August 1992, caused (14) ‘o’ extreme devastation. It was one of (15) the most devasting hurricanes ever to hit (16) the U.S. Fourteen people died of (17) the Andrew’s effect.
Complete the following sentences using appropriate determiners.
1. Only ______ people can afford to buy a flat in Chennai.
Ans ; few
2. She earns so _____ that she could not make a decent living.
Ans ; little
3. ________ information that she gave proved false.
Ans ; Some
4. How ________ sugar do you want?
Ans ; much
5. I am very tired today, as I had _______ guests today.
Ans ; many
6. _________ of my students have become doctors.
Ans ; Some
7. _________ do I know about his personal life.
Ans ; Little
8. How ____________ pages did you read?
Ans ; many
9. ________________ fertilizer used these days spoils the soil.
Ans ; Some
10. During my student life I used to give __________ trouble to my teachers.
Ans ; little
Degrees of Comparison
Transform each of the following sentences using the comparative degree without changing the meaning.
1. Very few Indian languages are as ancient as Tamil.
Tamil is more ancient than many other Indian languages.
2. Hurricanes are as dangerous as tornadoes.
Tornadoes are not more dangerous than hurricanes.
3. This is the most challenging task I have ever undertaken.
This is more challenging than any other task I have ever undertaken.
4. E-mail is the fastest means of communication.
E-mail is faster than any other means of communication.
5. Compulsive gambling is the worst habit a man can develop.
Compulsive gambling is worse than any other habit a man can develop.
Rewrite each of the following sentences using the superlative degree retaining the meaning.
1. Shakespeare is greater than many other dramatists of the world.
Shakespeare is one of the greatest dramatists of the world.
2. Some people think that nothing is as important as money in life.
Some people think that money is the most important thing in life.
3. The peacock is more colourful than any other bird found in India.
The peacock is the most colourful bird found in India.
4. Very few people in this town are as generous as Mr. Mohan.
Mr. Mohan is one of the most generous people in this town.
5. No other planet in our solar system is as cold as Neptune.
Neptune is the coldest planet in our solar system.
6. I cannot do anything better for you than this.
This is the best thing I can do for you.
Replace the comparative adjectives in the following sentences with their positive forms.
1. Rural life is certainly more peaceful than urban life.
Urban life is certainly not so peaceful as rural life.
2. The pen is mightier than the sword.
The sword is not so mighty as the pen.
3. Train journey is more comfortable than bus journey.
Bus journey is not so comfortable as train journey.
4. My mother can speak more sweetly than anyone else.
No other person can speak so sweetly as my mother.
5. Gold is not more useful than iron.
Iron is as useful as gold.
Look at the pictures given below, and write slogans to advertise the products. Suggest your own brand name for each of the products.
Whitens teeth, Freshens breath.
GANGA WATER PURIFIER
For germ free drinking water Your health is our concern.
CAMMY DIGITAL CAMERA
Nourish live memories Cherish sweet memories.
Pure ghee; no preservatives A delight for the young and the old.
Write slogans to create awareness of the following topics using the tips given above.
- Junk food – Ready to feed doctor’s pocket, Take junk food.
- Labour Day – Salute those who toil and soil for us.
- Save Water – Water is a boon of nature, Save it to fight drought.
- Yoga – For a healthy, brisk and bustling life.
- Blood Donation – Donate blood to save precious life.
Write a paragraph of about 150 words on the following topics. Page 161
a) The teacher I like the most
Our teachers are all our role models whom we are fortunate to follow. Among them is our English teacher, Ms. Gita who is patience personified. She radiates confidence and compassion. Her command over English is outstanding and we are spell-bound by her oratorical skill. She teaches us English adopting innovative techniques. She teaches grammar using audio-visual aids that make us understand difficult concepts easily. Her smile is infectious and our dullness and tiredness will vanish the moment she enters our class room. She is pro-active and guides us. She handles the late bloomers patiently. Many a time I have seen her helping some poor boys by rendering financial support. She actively involves herself in community service programme. She talks to the parents politely and gives them tips to improve their children’s knowledge. In the evenings, she plays tennis with the girls. She encourages girls to participate in competitions. So I like my English teacher the most as she is an inspiration to the students.
b) The values of discipline
Discipline is observance of strict rules that control an activity or situation. It is essential in any atmosphere for maintaining orderliness. The objectives of any institution or organisation can be realised only through a disciplined approach. There will arise utter chaos if discipline is thrown to the winds. Discipline makes learning smooth in educational institutions. It makes the subordinates perform their duties in accordance with the directions of their senior officers. The progress of the country depends on its disciplined citizens. Law and order is maintained by the disciplined police. The army should carry out the order of the commanders in a disciplined way. It is essential for stress free family life. There is no doubt that discipline builds harmony, strengthens unity and fosters cooperation.
c) Need for Moral Education in schools
The decay and degeneration being witnessed in the present day society is mainly due to lack of moral values among people. Disregard for law, disrespect for the elderly, selfishness, greed, corruption etc. are eating into the vitals of a civilized society. To remove all these negative qualities from the society, it is important that the schools come forward to inculcate moral values in the children. Today’s children are tomorrow’s citizens. So, they must learn moral values and adopt them in their day-to-day life so that others will be put to shame and change their way of life. As parents and other agencies have little patience to teach them moral values, the need should be felt by the schools only. Since in the formative years it is easy to impress the children, schools should explore all the avenues to prioritise moral education.
d) The importance of good health
‘Sound mind in sound body’ goes the saying. Without good health we cannot lead our lives happily. Ill-health brings pain and suffering. It prevents one from achieving one’s goal because all the time worrying about health will be spoiling one’s health. We become mentally depressed when we are ill. Even day-to-day activities cannot be taken up on account of failing health. Good health is an asset to a person who may be hit with financial problems. Swami Vivekananda says that we can be nearer to God by playing football rather than by reading the BhagavatGita. Inner peace can be attained out of good health. Good health creates a positive outlook and instills confidence. It builds up stamina, agility and vigour and vitality. Good health leads to a brisk and bustling life. To keep the body in good health is a duty otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind and body strong.
e) The importance of Reading
“Think before you speak but read before you think” is a famous quote on the importance of reading. Books are our never failing friends. They make us cheerful, enthusiastic and energetic. We wipe out our ignorance by reading books. We become better informed and make wise choices. Reading books makes us effective communicators. We acquire problem-solving and decision – making skills. They motivate us to do our best in everything. Creativity is stimulated by reading the books of great minds. Our sorrows and sufferings are lessened by reading books. We come into communion with great souls and our character is elevated and ennobled. Margret Fuller says, “Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” The book tittled ‘Civil Disobedience’ changed the thinking of Gandhiji and gave him the most potent weapon, non-violence. Reading has been instrumental in social transformation over the years. As Bacon says, ‘Reading makes a man.’
Observe the following pictures and write a paragraph in about 150 words about each one of them.
a) The fury of Nature
No pleadings or prayers can stand before the fury of nature. Shakespeare says, ‘Inscrutable are the ways of God.’ Similarly inexplicable are the forces of nature that destruct and decimate the lives and properties of human beings. Storm, cyclone, torrential rain, scorching sun, monsoon failure etc. are the different expressions of nature which is angry with man. The storm that hit the coastal districts has snapped the livelihood of farmers as well as other people. The poor woman looks at the trail of destruction and disaster. The coconut trees have been uprooted. Government and NGOs may talk a lot about rehabilitation. But it is not that easy. This is because it will take a long time for restoring normalcy. Restoring the sources of livelihood will be gradual. The government and voluntary organisations have tough time bringing financial support and mental strength to the starved people. Time and patience will heal every wound.
b) War and Peace co-exist
Peace and fight cannot go hand in hand. They are opposite to each other. But in this picture we come across the symbols of peace and fight in harmony with each other. It is paradoxical. The pigeon is a symbol of peace and the caged tiger is a symbol of uncontrolled fury and ferocity. It does not reason out; the instant it sees a prey, it pounces on it and tears it into pieces. But the bird is timid. Both the opposites are brought together in this picture. The timid bird which is not a danger to anybody is free but the ferocious animal is caged. It does not have freedom to move but the bird has freedom. They show the two sides of human beings – innocence and ferocity, peace and destruction. As the ferocity and destructive nature is caged or controlled, the human destructive quality should be kept within our control.
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