ICSE Previous Papers with Solutions for Class 10 English-I 2014
ICSE Paper 2014
Answers to this Paper must be written on the paper provided separately,
You will not be allowed to write during the first 15 minutes.
This time is to be spent in reading the question paper.
The time given at the head of this Paper is the time allowed for writing the answers.
Attempt all four questions.
The intended marks for questions or parts of questions are given in brackets [ ].
You are advised to spend not more than 35 minutes in answering Question 1 and 20 minutes in answering Question 2.
Question 1: 
(Do not spend more than 35 minutes on this question.)
Write a composition (350 – 400 words) on any one of the following:
(a) Write an original short story that begins with the words : “Its not my fault”, he shouted………”
(b) ‘Working women make better mothers than women who stay at home’. Express your views either for or against this statement.
(c) Describe an early morning walk through your city or town in winter. Give details of the smells, sights, sounds and feelings you experienced.
(d) Think of a time when you found yourself in an embarrassing situation. Narrate how you got into that situation, how you dealt with it and the lesson you learnt from it.
(e) Study the picture given below. Write a short story or description or an account of what the picture suggests to you. Your composition may be about the subject of the picture or you may take suggestions from it; however, your composition must have a clear connection with the picture.
(a) “It’s not my fault”, he shouted as he went across to the opposite bank of the river in his boat. He is a man of truth and honesty another merchant spoke proudly about him. To me it seemed that the man who went across the river has been living in this small village for a long-time and therefore, the village people have trust and faith in him. I came here because this village is a famous tourist spot. It is famous for its water scenery and numerous water sports besides their cultural dances and music. It is really fascinating that a whole world of entertainment one can enjoy here, in this small village.
I was impressed by the personality of that man and wanted to enquire more about him. Many questions came in my mind—Why was he in a hurry? Why was he shouting? What had he done? Why was he angry? Therefore, to settle my curiosity I enquired about him and came to know that his name is Rajeshwar and his age is around fifty. He is a well known person in the locality because of his intelligence, hard work, truth and honesty. He takes the tourists to the opposite bank of the river where the flaura and fauna is a feast to the eyes. Another man informed me he took a tourist couple to the opposite bank. The woman was beautiful: and heavily decked with golden jewellery and was carrying a box containing gold coins.
On their return journey the couple found that their box filled with gold coins was missing. They accused Rajeshwar of having stolen the box. I felt pity for Rajeshwar and wanted to help him because in the whole conversation I developed the same confidence in him as the villagers had. On inquiring more, I came to know that the man was wearing an attractive hat. Suddenly I remembered that the same afternoon I was also present there and was capturing pictures of the couple, with the beautiful scenery as the back drop. I thoroughly searched the pictures in my camera and to my surprise in one of the pictures. I saw the box falling into the river from the edge of the boat.
I immediately showed it to the people and they then showed it to the tourist couple. They felt guilty and ashamed of wrongly accusing Rajeshwar and to pacify matters offered gifts to him.
(b) “The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.” It is very true that mothers play an important role in the growth and development of the future generation. My plea is that an educated and a working woman will have a more positive impact on the child and hence is more capable of moulding the destiny of the future generation. Now when the women are moving shoulder to shoulder with men and moving ahead in life, debating on this is like emotionally blackmailing and making them weak. It is also like accusing them that they are shirking from their responsibility of bringing up their children well. It is also like making them feel small that they are running away from their duty of a home-maker and are Only bothered about their position and moving forward in their professional life.
All these accusations are false. It’s like keeping a double fare. One time you talk about the necessity of a woman to actively participate in the country’s economic growth and then when she steps out you shout hoarse that she is not balancing her home and office with the result that children sue running astray.
I would like to say why point a finger at her alone. Why make her solely responsible for all the wrong that might take place at home? Why is the father not targeted? It is high time both the parents shoulder equal responsibility for both keeping house and rearing children. When a man wants his daughter to study, work and make a name for herself then why should he restrict his wife from doing the same. Next, I would like to say that it is not necessary that the women who stay at home prove to be perfect or better mothers. Rather the children of mothers who stay at home are more pampered where as working mothers’ children are more disciplined. I think it is not right to constrain and limit women to house-keeping mid child-rearing and waste the abundant potential which is within them. This talent and energy should rather be channelised and used productivity for the individual’s plus the country’s progress.
(c) Exercises is very necessary for good health. One such exercise which is a complete package is early morning walk be it in summer or winter. Walking through the city in the early hours of the morning one gets to see a totally different view one’s nature place. Agra at 6 p.m. is entirely different from the Agra at 10 a.m., 2 p.m. or 8 p.m.
I go for morning walk to Paliwal Park which is situated in the heart of the city. It is about 2.5 km from my house to reach there. I have to cross through a lot of markets, bazars and shopping complexes at the normal hour of the day it would take a person even on a two wheeler atleast 20 minutes or even more to reach there. At 6.30 a.m. there is a quietness prevailing the entire area. Two or more street dogs can be seen I near the garbage heaps looking for crumbs thrown by the people the night before. One or two autorickshaws can be seen flying on the road. It seems people travelling by rail or bus have moved out early from there houses to catch their transport well in time.
Near a crossing, I was lucky to escape colliding with a car moving at break neck speed. I was moving at the side of the road but since it was fdggy and the car was at high speed, the driver missed seeing the cow crossing the road to save collision, he swerved the car to his left and missed hitting me by a few inches. I yelled a few mouthfull of obscenities at him and at the same time thanked God that I was safe.
The park was just around 100 metres and I could hear the chirping of the birds, parrots and pigeons were flying from one branch of a tree to another. Amidst the sheet of thin white fog the colourful flowers in the park gave a solace to the heart and was a feast to the eyes. The fragrance of the sweet smelling flowers filled my mind with a freshness which cannot be compared to anything in the world.
The park was filled with people of various age groups. The cold winter had not prevented these health conscious individuals to stay back in their cozy beds and to put off going for the morning walk the most important nutrient for the healthy body.
The pure fresh air of the morning devoid of the poisonous gases inhaled by the innumerable vehicles running to and fro in the city streets gives a boost to the body to battle the days hectic schedule. Words are insufficient to describe the feelings one to must go for a morning walk to experience the great feeling.
(d) It was recess time and we all were sitting and talking amongst ourselves about school teachers and friends and movie. Prom the rear end of the class we heard a big noise, two of our classmates Rakshit and Rohan had got into fighting. The reason was the same girls. Argument had started over a girl called Tanvi who was a common friend of theirs and my cousin sister. Tanvi studies in a all-girls school in the tenth class. Rohan and Rakshit, Tanvi, and a number of other friends take maths tuition at the same centre.
When I heard my sister’s name being called out again and again by Rakshit I went to him and started yelling at him as to why was he fighting over my sister. Rakshit tried to explain to me but I would not hear and blasted at him that he was rude and mean. He was a nasty boy as he was talking ill about Tanvi, my sister. I reeled and reeled at him, without giving a break. When all efforts made by Rakshit to make me listen fell on deaf ears, he walked away in anger.
After sometime I cooled down and stopped shouting. By now the whole class was in uproar some took my side and pointing a finger at Rakshit, while others trying to cool me on Rakshit’s behalf. My close friend Arpita was very upset with the entire scene. She thought I had over-reacted in the whole situation. No sooner she said this, I shouted at her and in anger gave her one tight push that she feel and hurt herself Rohan who was in the midst of all affairs and was silently watching came to me. He told me one by one the entire conversation that took place between him and Rakshit and to my horror I realized Rakshit was nowhere at fault. He was rather defending Tanvi and shouting at Rohan for speaking ill of Tanvi. I was very embarassed by my behaviour and fell guilty of my actions. I was at a loss of words to say sorry to Rakshit.
I realized that suddenly there was a pin drop silence and as I looked up my friend Rakshit was standing in front of me. Tears welled up in my eyes and I said sorry. He hugged me tight saying no sorry, no thank you in friendship. Again bedlam broke out in class as everyone screamed and yelled in happiness as the differences cleaned up.
(e) The picture vividly portrays a poor girl Pinky working hard at breaking stones to make a living. Such is her misery that in the days when she should be going to school and playing she has to survive such in her irony that instead of smiles and carefreeness her face is writ large with a worry for earning her bread.
Child labour is another name which can be given for this picture. It is a serious blot in the efforts to project the nation as a dynamic country. The root cause of child labour is poverty and to some extent ignorance. And this is a stark truth that without work these child labourers would starve to death. The parents cannot afford to feed them and these little children are forced to work. Thus, the hands that should be used for study or play are used for hard manual work.
This girl ‘Pinky’ has become symbolic of all child labourers who are exposed to the difficulties of the world at such a tender age. It is a pity to see the coil and shoulder responsibilities which is far more than their shoulders can bear.
The girl is forced to do hazardous work without proper compensation. She is risking her life just to keep their body and soul together. So tragic is her condition that she has turned into a physical and mental wreck. Her weak body seems to suffer from disease.
The government should realize the guilty of the situation and take strict actions to ban child labour. Though it has been declared an offence the laws are not effectively enforced. The reason could be, that though law has been made, there is no provision for the child to cater to his basic needs like food and shelter. No ban can work, unless we can ensure that they are provided with food, shelter and education. This would bring back their childhood, but also secures the future of the nation. For the progress of the nation, it should ensure that no Pinky goes to sleep hungry.
(Do not spend more than 20 minutes on this question.)
Select one of the following: 
(a) Your uncle has promised to give you a gift of Rs. 1000/-. Write a letter thanking him for the offer, tell him how you plan to spend the money; and why you wish to spend it in this way.
(b) You are the President of the Nature Club in your school which is hosting the Earth Day Celebrations. Write a letter to the Principal of a neighbouring school inviting the school to participate in the event. State when, why and how you plan to celebrate Earth Day.
(a) 5, Nehru Nagar
15th March, 2014
I wish to thank you for the gift of Rs. 1,000 that you have promised to give me if I score.above 80% in iny final exams. This incentive is pushing me to study very hard and give my hundred percent.
My situation has become like counting the chicks before they are hatched as I have already thought about what I am going to do with the money. I will buy two novels by J.K. Rowling. After the exams, in the vacations I will read them. This will improve my reading speed, vocabulary and English as well.
With the remaining money, I will get my printer repaired which is out of order at the moment. I need to get it repaired to do the project-work in the next class. Thus, I will use the money you gift me appropriate. Please wish me luck so that I can do well in my exams and you may keep your promise.
(b) 3, Garden Road
St. Georges College,
15th March, 2014
Subject—Invitation for Participation on Earth Day Celebration
As the President of Nature Club of St. Georges College I extend an invitation to the students of your school to participate in the Earth Day celebration being hosted by our school.
The day the event will take place is 23rd October, 2014 at 9 a.m. in the college auditorium. The chief guest and judge for the event is the eminent environmentalist and scientist Mr. R. P. Saxena. There will be an exhibition, poster competition and talk by the chief guest on the topic ‘Save Earth’.
It is hoped that the students of your school will actively participate in the event. This activity hopes to bring an awareness among the students about the problems, dangers faced by the planet earth and the measures that need to be taken to preserve the ailing planet.
We, at St. Georges College look forward to the active participation of the students of your school.
Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow:
Richard Parker was so named because of a clerical error.
A panther was terrorizing the Khulna district of Bangladesh, just outside the Sundarbans. It had recently carried off a little girl. She was the seventh person killed in two months by the animal. And it was growing bolder. The previous victim was a man who had been attacked in broad daylight in his field. The beast dragged him off into the forest, and his corpse was later found hanging from a tree. The villagers kept a watch nearby that night, hoping to surprise the panther and kill it, but it never appeared.
The Forest Department hired a professional hunter. He set up a small, hidden platform in a free near a river where two of the attacks had taken place. A goat was tied to a stake on the river’s bank. The hunter waited several nights. He assumed the panther would be an old, wasted male with worn teeth, incapable of catching anything more difficult than a human. But it was a sleek tiger that stepped into the open one night: a female with a single cub. The goat bleated. Oddly, the cub, who looked to be about three months old, paid little attention to the goat. It raced to the water’s edge, where it drank eagerly. Its mother followed it. Of hunger and thirst, thirst is the greater urge. Only once the tiger had quenched her thirst did she turn to the goat to satisfy her hunger.
The hunter had two rifles with him: one with real bullets, the other with immobilizing darts. This animal was not the man-eater, but so close to human habitation she might pose a threat to the villagers, especially as she was with cub. He picked up the gun with the darts. He fired as the tiger was about to attack the goat. The tiger reared up and snarled and raced away. But immobilizing darts don’t bring on sleep gently—they knock the creature out without warning. A burst of activity on the animal’s part makes it act all the faster. The hunter called his assistants on the radio. They found the tiger about two hundred yards from the river. She was still conscious. Her back legs had given way and her balance on her front legs was shaky. When the men got close, she tried to get away but could not manage it. She turned on them, lifting a paw that was meant to kill. It only made her lose her balance. She collapsed and the Pondicherry Zoo had two new tigers. The cub was found in a bush close by, meowing with fear.
The hunter, whose name was Richard Parker, picked it up with his bare hands and, remembering how it had rushed to drink in river, named it Thirsty. But the shipping clerk at the Howrah train station was evidently a man both confused and diligent. All the papers received with the cub clearly stated that its name was Richard Parker, that the hunter’s first name was Thirsty add that his family name was None Given. Richard Parker’s name stuck. I don’t know if the hunter was ever called Thirsty None Given!
(a) Give the meaning of each of the following words as used in the passage. 
One word answers ob short phrases will be accepted.
- corpse (line 6)
- quenched (line 16)
- reared (line 20)
(b) Answer the following questions briefly in your own words.
- Why does the author say that the panther ‘was getting bolder’? 
- Why did the Forest Department hire a professional hunter? 
- What did the hunter expect to encounter? What did he actually encounter? 
- What did the tiger do before turning to attack the goat? Why did it do that? 
- Why did the hunter decide to shoot the tiger though he knew it was not the man-eater? 
- What name did the hunter give to the cub? Why? 
(i) In not more than 60 words narrrate how the hunter and his assistants captured the tiger and her cub. 
(ii) Give a suitable title to your summary in 3(c). Give a reason to justify your choice. 
- corpse—dead body
- reared—got up
- The panther was getting bolder as it had killed seven persons in two months. Very recently, it carried off a little girl and the previous victim had been a man who was attacked in broad daylight in his field.
- The forest department hired a professional hunter because a panther was terrorizing the villagers of the Kulna district of Bangladesh.The panther had killed seven persons in two months. The villager’s efforts to kill the panther had failed.
- The hunter expected that the panther world be an old, wasted male with worn teeth, incapable of catching anything more difficult than a human. He found that it was a sleek tiger, a female with a single cub.
- The tiger followed the cub to the water’s edge to drink water before she turned to the goat to satisfy her hunger. Thirst is a greater urge than hunger.
- The hunter decided to shoot the tiger though he knew it was not the man eater because it was very close to. human habitation and might pose a threat to the villagers, especially since she was with cub.
- The hunter named the cub ‘Thirsty’ as he remembered how the cub had rushed to drink water in the river.
(ii) “Richard Parker and Thirsty” is a suitable title for the summary. The title is suitable as the summary tells how the hunter Richard Parker successfully captures thirsty the tiger is given in detail.
(a) Fill in each of the numbered blanks with the correct form of the word given in brackets. Do not copy the passage, but write in correct serial order the word or phrase appropriate to the blank space. 
(0) From his perch behind the clock, Hugo could (0)……. (see) everything.
Answer: (0) see.
He rubbed his fingers nervously against the small notebook in his pocket and (1)……… (tell) himself to be patient. The old man in the toy booth (2)…….. (argue) with the girl. She (3)……… (be) about Hugo’s age and he often saw her go into the booth and (4)……. (disappear) behind the counter. The old man (5)…….. (look) agitated today. Had he figured out some of his toys were (6)……. (miss)? Well, there was nothing to be (7)…….(do) about that now. The old man and the girl argued some more and finally she closed her book and (8)……. (run) off.
(b) Fill in the blanks with an appropriate word: 
- The teacher spoke for Raju when he was wrongly accused of stealing money.
- We can visit her in the hostel 3 pm and 6 pm on Saturdays.
- The Sinhas have lived in New Delhi 1943.
- Little children are often afraid the dark.
- Sneha has applied a scholarship.
- It took Ahmed many months to get the loss of his friend.
- She turned the generous offer made by the manager.
- We were asked to take our footwear as we were entering a place of worship.
(c) Join the following sentences to make one complete sentence without using and, but or so. 
- He is good at gymnastics. His handwriting must improve.
- Her grandfather gifted her a paint box. He knew she was good at art.
- Ravi fractured his arm. He insisted on playing the match.
- Mona has been ill for a month. She stood first in the examination.
(d) Re-write the following sentences according to the instructions given after each. Make other changes that may be necessary, but do not change the meaning of each sentence. 
- As soon as we lit the candle, the power supply was restored.
(Begin : No sooner………. )
- The bee is more industrious than all other creatures.
(Use: ‘most industrious’)
- The old woman was too slow to catch the bus.
(Begin : The old woman was so……… )
- “I’ll do it tomorrow,” he promised.
(Rewrite in indirect speech)
- Though Reema got an expensive gift she was not happy.
(Begin : Inspite……… )
- I prefer reading a book to watching a movie.
(Begin : I would rather…….. )
- I have never seen Mr. Roy lose his temper.
(Begin : Never…….. )
- She found your keys in the garage.
(Begin : The keys……… )
- was arguing
- was looking
- Being good at gymnastics, he must improve his hand writing.
- Her grandfather gifted her a paint box as she was good at art.
- Though Ravi had fractured his arm, he insisted on playing the match.
- Although Mona has been ill for a month she stood first in the examination.
- No sooner we lit the candle than the power supply was restored.
- The bee is one of the most industrious of all creatures.
- The old woman was so slow that she could not catch the bus.
- He promised to do it the next day.
- Inspite of getting an expensive gift, Reema was not happy.
- I would rather read a book than watch a movie.
- Never have I seen Mr. Roy lose his temper.
- The keys were found in the garage.
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