Saturday, May 31, 2014

My Childhood - Grammar

I. Read the following paragraph and note the underlined words.
. . . On the whole, the small society of Rameswaram was very rigid in terms of the segregation of different social groups. However, my science teacher Sivasubramania Iyer, though an orthodox Brahmin with a very conservative wife, was something of a rebel. He did his best to break social barriers so that people from varying backgrounds could mingle easily.

Notice the underlined words or phrases in the above paragraph. They are called linkers or discourse markers. Noticing and understanding discourse markers help learners to understand the logical structure of what they read and listen to, the order of events and the attitude of the speaker or writer and what they refer to.

Think of the following.
  1. What makes the writer use the linker ' on the whole' in the above paragraph? Give reasons.
  2. What purpose does the linker 'however' serve in the paragraph?
  3. What does the writer emphasize by using the linker ' though'?
  4. Why does the writer use the linkers.

A.   Here is a list of linkers, which is not exhaustive. Some of them can be used synonymously. Refer to a dictionary and group them in the following table according to the function they perform in a sentence or discourse.

firstly, equally, besides, later, on the other hand, to sum up, on the contrary, further more, as a result, yet, thirdly, thus, still, suddenly, in the same way, nevertheless, therefore, at the same time, hence, all the same, subsequently, so, likewise, secondly, meanwhile, moreover, similarly, consequently, however,

S. No
Indicating addition



Indicating sequence in time

Indicating a parallel(similarity)

Ordering points

B. Fill in the blanks appropriate choices given in brackets.
  1. I don’t want to go to a restaurant;_______________(besides / as a result), we can’t afford it.
  2. A career in IT field is lucrative;_____________(similarly / at the same time), it is stressful and it can even be harmful to one’s health.
  3. I understand your problems;______________(although / however), I can’t help you.
  4. Transportation has developed a lot in India;______________(likewise / whereas), the trade too has improved.
  5. Some of the students scored low ranks in the exams;________________(so that / consequently), the teacher arranged remedial classes.
C. Complete the following paragraph by choosing the appropriate linking word.
next, for example, however, secondly, finally, thirdly

Linking words help us in many ways in writing.______________, they help us in presenting our ideas in a meaningful way._______________, they help us to introduce and develop the main idea of the paragraph._______________, they help us to illustrate and add supporting details._____________, they help us in moving from one idea to another by binding one sentence with another.___________, they help us to understand the ideas presented in the paragraph.______________, using too many linking words ruins the structure and coherence of the paragraph.

D. Join the following sentences using the linkers given in brackets.
  1. There were freezing temperatures. They trekked for hours. (in spite of)
  2. It's an interesting city. We're going to visit it again. (such … that)
  3. We booked a holiday. We had very little money. (although)
  4. The tour guide was informative. We didn't need to read our guidebook. (so … that)
  5. He didn't like water. He booked a cruise. (In spite of the fact that)
  6. Preachers preach many good things. Many of them do not practice what they preach. ( however)
  7. Jainulabdeen had no formal education and no wealth. (neither….nor)
  8. The continental dimensions of the country account for the variations and diversities . There are several religious sects and beliefs.( besides).

II. Passive voice without agent.
Observe the following sentences taken from the text.
I was born.
Emergency was declared.
I was asked to go and sit on the back bench
You might have learnt in your previous classes about active and passive voice constructions. Though the above sentences are in the passive the agent is not mentioned.

The agents are not mentioned in the following situations.
• When the agent is obvious
• When the agent is not known
• When it is not desirable to reveal the identity of the agent.
Pick out from the text some more passive constructions without agents and give reasons why the agent is not mentioned.

III. Edit the following paragraph. It has some errors in the following areas like punctuation, spelling, tense, prepositions, articles.

he told me as if thinking aloud abul i know you have to go away to grow did the seagull not fly toward the son alone without a nest he quotes khalil gibran to my hesitant mother your children are not your children they are sons and daughters of lifes longing to itself they come to you but not from you you may give them love but not your thoughts for they have there own thoughts

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