Strategy for passage questions
For the seen passage section, while most teachers advise students to first read the passage and only then look for the answers to the asked questions. Some students are comfortable doing it the other way, by first reading the questions and then looking for their answers in the passage. As you have already read the passage before, reading it all over again isn’t always necessary and sometimes might also waste time. Thus, there is no particular right or wrong and it’s totally up to you to decide what strategy works best for you. However, for the unseen passage, it is always better to first go through the entire passage and understand the essence of it along with the central idea. Once you are aware of these things, you can easily answer each question by navigating through the passage which you now somewhat have an idea about.
Since the language paper consists of multiple types of questions, such as passage-based, poetry-based, grammar-based, and then also the essay, advertisement making, story writing along with other stuff, time management is essential to making sure one completes his paper on time. It is advised for the students to previously plan as to how much time they shall a lot to different sections of the paper and stick to it during the final exam.
Read the textbook thoroughly, and then some
Since most of the passage-based questions are from the textbook itself, you will save yourself quite some time if you are already familiar with the passage. This is possible only if you read the textbook properly. Hence, your priority should be to finish reading the NCERT Books for Class 11 English Hornbill as soon as you can. By doing so, you will be able to quickly understand where to look for the answer to a particular question in the passage. Knowing all the words and synonyms along with their antonyms will help in answering the grammatical questions based on each passage. Once you’re done reading the textbook and are confident about answering the questions asked under the seen passage, you must then turn your attention towards reading extra books that might be anything from history and geography to sports.
Having a strong vocabulary and using different words prove that you have a strong command of the language and are capable of using the right word whenever needed. One must put conscious efforts into improving his or her vocabulary and this can be done by reading and noting down a unique word, every time you spot one and checking up its meaning in the dictionary or on google. Using newly learned words that have been mentioned in the textbook also helps bring attention to your skill of applying what you’ve learned in the syllabus.
Grammar Mistakes – A big No!
Of all the mistakes in the world, committing grammatical errors such as using the wrong tense of the word, misspelling words, leaving sentences unfinished, are a big no when it comes to the English exam. It is important for one to double-check their sentences and read their answers twice to make sure they haven’t missed out on articles and other such tiny details and that their answer is grammatically sound. This is especially important for short answers where even the tiniest of grammatical errors stand out easily and give the teacher a reason to cut marks.
Special efforts must be put into getting a hang of writing good personal response answers. These answers must not be too long or too short and should indicate your stance on the topic concerned. Making use of facts or anecdotes that support or provide an explanation for your answer is a welcome touch. Reading multiple personal response answers to the same question, from different sources, or even from some of your friends, can give you an idea of the various directions in which people can think and this eventually broadens your horizon.
Decorate your answers and essays with quotes, idioms, and proverbs
Making use of idioms and proverbs if they fit well in the context of your answer not only shows that you’ve put effort into learning some of them, but are also capable of reproducing those in the right manner. You can also go so far as to underline each proverb that you’ve used just to highlight it a bit more. That being said, using idioms and proverbs in an incorrect sense or also using too many of them shall be avoided.
Write more often
A mistake that most people commit while preparing for the language paper is that they focus too much on just reading and not trying to write as much. The English paper is pretty lengthy and requires one to be able to write fast, which won’t come without practice. We advise you to write at least two to three pages every single day, be it personal response answers, essays, stories or any other content matter.
Although much cannot be done about your handwriting by the time you are in the 9th standard, work can be put into making sure your paper is presented well in a clean and sophisticated manner. Don’t crumble too many answers on the same page, underline wherever necessary, start a new question on a new page, use a pen that you are comfortable with, tie your supplements properly and avoid any pencil or ink stains on your paper. A well-presented paper can go a long way in making the moderator want to read your content and understand it better.
While all other papers have a defined strategy and pattern that you can follow to excel in them, the language paper doesn’t have any such structure and you’re pretty much relying on your skills as a reader and writer to be able to do well in the exam. However, there are still a few things that you might make a note of and follow diligently while preparing for the English exam. Getting a score upwards of 90 in the English paper is indeed a daunting task, but as they say, where there is a will, there is a way.
Speaks from heart, always too passionate and driven by emotions. Spins the words with kindness & sharpness, intriguing your ever-inscrutable minds.