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RED SWASTIKA SCHOOL ENGLISH LANGUAGE - COMPREHENSION SUPPLEMENTARY WORKSHEET (E) Name:_________________________ (

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Date: ________________

Class: P5 / _____________________

Read the passage below and answer the following questions. Little Joe was brown, short-legged and sausage-shaped. He was of dubious ancestry and belonged to my sister Anna. With a great tail wagging and thumping, Little Joe went to anyone who paid attention to him. We all loved him dearly, as did the rest of the neighbourhood kids. Little Joe’s lack of pedigree caused him no discomfort, nor did it cast any stigma. He trotted around the streets as though he were nobility, with his foolish little head held high, bestowing an innocent smile on all he met – including vehicular traffic. We tried to teach him about the dangers of the road, and finally resorted to locking him in the yard. However, on one unforgettable day, Little Joe dug a hole under the fence and bounded out to visit all the friends he knew.

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Sometime later, a tearful delegation consisting of the younger members of our family augmented by excited neighbourhood children brought home the alarming news that a truck had seriously injured Little Joe. We children ran to the scene of the accident, where a small crowd had gathered around our hapless Joe. Though his eyes were open, he lay pitifully stretched out, apparently unable to move. Tears filled our eyes and also the eyes of some of the bystanders as Little Joe showed that he recognised us with a feeble wag of his tail. We huddled around him, frustrated by our inability to respond to the appeal for help we read in his eyes. And we were terrified by the pistol in the holster of the approaching policeman. He motioned us away from the dog and drew his gun. This was the accepted method in those days of dispatching injured animals. Wide-eyed, and with the defencelessness of small children looking up into a tall adult world, we began to back away with feet that seemed to be made of lead. We looked into the faces of those around us. No one could help us, and no one could help Little Joe.

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Suddenly we became aware of a commotion, and the crowd parted. My father was elbowing his way through the circle of onlookers. He spoke with authority to the young policeman, “Put that thing away! You don’t use that around children!” Then, bending on one knee on the road, he removed his worn work jacket and carefully wrapped it around Little Joe. Perhaps many events in a child’s life reach

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exaggerated proportions as time passes, but to this day I remember that had my father’s rough, work-worn hands been those of a great surgeon, Little Joe’s broken body could not have been moved with more gentleness. I cannot swear that the emotion that I saw in Little Joe’s eyes was gratitude, but I like to think that it was. I’ll never forget that homeward journey. My father was the master of the situation. With Little Joe wrapped in his jacket, he led a procession of admiring children, tearstained but no longer crying. We held our heads high with pride as we marched behind the man who had stopped an execution. He might have been a great general leading his troops but for the fact that his uniform was baggy-kneed overalls and his sword a carpenter’s rule.

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For many nights, we thought Little Joe’s life was over. In fact, the veterinarian we summoned thought so too. He did not even bother to return. But my father spoke with resolution as he knelt beside the wooden nail box that served as a makeshift hospital bed. “He has fight in him. Wait.”

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So we waited. Sure enough, Little Joe survived. He went on to live a long life, and my dad – he built many more boats. Our ostensibly stern father would probably not have stood out in a crowd; in stature he was a little above average. But I know of an army of kids who, on that one special day, watched him become a giant.

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ALL ANSWERS MUST BE IN COMPLETE SENTENCES. 1.

What was the writer’s father working as? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

2.

Who was Little Joe? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

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3.

Which word in paragraph 1 has the same meaning as the word ‘questionable’? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

4.

Explain clearly why the writer and his family resorted to locking Little Joe in the yard. _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

5.

“He motioned us away from the dog and drew his gun.” (line 20) What do you think the policeman was going to do with his gun? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

6.

“… we began to back away with feet that seemed to be made of lead.” (line 23) Explain why the children felt that their feet seemed to be made of lead. _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

7.

What does ‘that thing’ (line 28) refer to? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

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8.

Why did the children stop crying in the end? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

9.

Why did the veterinarian ‘not bother to return’ (line 42)? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

10.

From the last paragraph, how do you think the writer felt about his father? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________

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RED SWASTIKA SCHOOL COMPREHENSION WORKSHEET (E) ANSWER KEY   1.

He was a boat builder. He was working as a boat builder. He was a boat maker. He was working as a carpenter who built boat. The writer’s father was a person who built boats. He was a boat-builder. He was a carpenter. He was a ship maker. He was a surgeon.

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2.

He was Anna’s pet dog. He was a dog. He was Anna’s, the writer’s sister, dog. Little Joe was a sausage dog. Little Joe was a brown, short-legged, sausage-shaped dog. (missing connector ‘and’) A dog of the writer’s sister. Little Joe was a pet sausage dog. Little Joe was a puppy. He was Anna’s pet. He was the author’s sister’s pet. He was my sister Anna’s dog. Little Joe was the writer’s dog.

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3.  

The word is “dubious”.

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4.

He liked to roam around the neighbourhood without regard to the dangers on the roads. They were afraid that Little Joe would get hurt in the traffic. Little Joe was fond of running out into the street and the writer and his family did not want him to get hurt. They were afraid that he could have been run over by vehicles if they let him went out. They were afraid that Little Joe would meet with an accident. Little Joe would always wander around the streets, and the writer and his family were worried that he might get injured. They wanted to protect him from the dangers of the road. Little Joe did not understand the dangers of the road. The writer tried to teach him about the dangers of the road but failed so the writer did not want an accident to happen to him that is why his family resorted to locking Little Joe in the yard. Little Joe did not know the dangers of the road. Little Joe did not understand the dangers of the road when the writer and his family tried to teach Little Joe. Little Joe trots the streets as though he was noble. The writer tried to teach him the danger of the roads but he would not listen. The writer and his family tried to teach him about the dangers of the road and he trotted around the streets as though he were nobility, with his foolish little head held high, bestowing an innocent smile on al lhe met – including vehicular traffic. They did not want him to be knocked down. (must mention what might knock him down) They had tried to teach him about the dangers of the road, so finally they resorted to locking Little Joe in the yard. They wanted to teach him about the dangers of the road but he still smiled to all vehicular traffic.

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5.

He was going to shoot Little Joe. He wanted to shoot / kill the dog (with the gun). He was trying to shoot / kill the dog. He was trying to shot the dog. He was going to dispatch the dog.

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6.

The children were reluctant to leave Little Joe at the mercy of the policeman. They could not bear to see Little Joe being shot. They did not want Joe to be killed / get shot at. They could not bear to leave Little Joe alone to die. They did not want to back away as they did not want the policeman to dispatch Little Joe. The children did not want to back away but they were forced to do so / had no choice. They were frightened and reluctant to go. They were reluctant to back away as they knew that no one could help them and Little Joe. They were reluctant to move back but were defenceless against the adults. They do not want to leave the dog. They were afraid that the policeman might kill Little Joe but they were defenceless against him. They were frightened of the policeman. They felt very frightened and scared when the policeman told them to back away and was about to shoot the dog. They could not do anything to stop the policeman from executing the dog. Nobody could help them and nobody could help Little Joe too.

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* Any feeling words associated with being defenceless or helplessness – no marks awarded  

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7.

It refers to the policeman’s gun. It refers to the gun / pistol. It refers to the gun the policeman was holding. It refers to a gun / pistol. It refers to the gun the policeman was pointing at the children. “ That thing ” refers to the policeman’s gun. “ that thing ” refers to the pistol the policeman was holding. It refers to “the gun” .

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8.

(They were relieved that) Little Joe was not killed by the policeman. (They were relieved that) the writer’s father had managed to save Little Joe. The writer’s father saved Little Joe. The policeman did not kill Little Joe. They knew that the dog had some hope of surviving. The writer’s father saved Little Joe and took him home. The writer’s father saved Little Joe and brought him home. They stopped crying as Little Joe had survived. Little Joe was not dead. There was someone who helped Little Joe. They were surprised that the writer’s father had saved Little Joe. They stopped crying because the writer’s father was going to take Little Joe to the vet. The policeman was not able to kill Little Joe. The dog did not die. There was hope for Little Joe. His father had taken Little Joe to the vet. The writer’s father wrapped his jacket around Little Joe. They admired the writer’s father for stopping the policeman from shooting Little Joe. They were admiring the writer’s father who had stopped an execution and saved a dog’s life. The children admired the writer’s father for stopping the policeman who tried to shoot Little Joe. They decided not to kill Little Joe.

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Explanation: “They” is not specific as to who had killed Little Joe.  

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9.

He felt certain that Little Joe would not survive / die. He thought that Little Joe’s life was over. He thought that Little Joe / it was going to die. He thought that he was going to die. (he could mean the dog or the vet – unclear) He felt that Little Joe / it / he was dead. He felt that Little Joe was dead.

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10.

He was proud of his father.

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