Empathize with the hero and the story will come alive

English language preparation for the Class 12 Board Exam requires a basic understanding of the importance of the language in our life today. Unlike other subjects, English requires a certain amount of creativity in framing and formulating words, sentences & stories.Unlike other subjects, English requires a certain amount of creativity in framing and formulating words, sentences and stories.

Read between the lines:The English papers are divided into three sections: reading, writing and the literature. Reading magazines on current affairs and interesting articles would not only improve your vocabulary but also give you a better perspective to the world order. Focused reading and analysis of the core meaning of the passage is the easy mantra to crack the code.

Clear and Concise:A good presentation is much better than shabby content.The language requires clarity and legibility and not confused content. So write neatly and clearly. Nothing touches a teacher’s heart more than clear, cogent and concise prose from a student’s pen. If cutting, scratching and over-writing can be avoided the paper not only appeals to the eyes but also makes better impact on the evaluator.

Learn to Listen:Listening is a great skill and is the best exemplified by children who listen to words good or bad and learn to enunciate the same. When a speech is made the best and ideal option would be to pay attention to the diction and pronunciation and try to recall and write the same. This would surely get the spellings right and ideas would start flowing giving rise to debate and speech topics for the future.

Empathy and Sympathy:Every character in literature is immortal primarily because they have shades of our lives in theirs. So have empathy with the protagonist and the story will come alive and seem realistic. It is then easy to write about him or her since we would understand their dilemma and confusion. When emotions are comprehended then it is easy to write about them.

Keep it Simple:There’s no need for bombastic language. Keep it simple and comprehensive. Clean presentation, legible handwriting in box format with clear cut paragraphs not exceeding 30 to 40 words would make the presentation appealing, readable and easy to assess.

Read it all and well:Reading time given before the paper needs to be used to the optimum. Mind map the topics and decide what could be the appropriate content for the ten mark questions in the writing section. The comprehension passage would summarily indicate the core issue that is being discussed and bring up the answers on a second read.

Speed is the need of the hour:It takes time to warm up while writing exams, so start at the beginning with the reading skills and slowly work your way to finishing the writing skills and wind it up with literature, especially the long reading text question. This would get the mind and hands working in tandem.

Time is all:It would be ideal to time it from the very beginning. There are three sections and three hours as given time, so begin slowly, warm up and pick up speed. Ensure that the paper is completed in two hours and forty five minutes. Then carefully underline the keywords in pencil. Highlighting the main points would show that you are totally prepared for the paper.

Be well prepared:Build up the confidence that you will crack the paper.No matter what questions you get, if you have read your text books and understood everything, that’s bound to reflect in your answers. There is and never was any magic mantra to complete any paper. So remember to avoid cutting, scratching and overwriting. Diligently follow the box format and consistently approach the questions and answers in a stipulated order and underline the important key points. This systematic approach would ensure that you score well!

Published in Hindustan Times, New Delhi, January 14, 2015

(ShubhashiniRamakrishnan is the Head of the Department for English at Studymate – Learning Centers from Hindustan Times)