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Chapter: 12th English : Prose : The Summit


English : Prose : The Summit By Edmund Hillary : Speaking a) Group Activity, b) Individual Activity


a) Group Activity

i) Have you ever been on an adventurous trip? If so, share your success story with your friends.

Good morning, friends. Now I wish to share my adventurous trip from Trichy to Madurai 130 kms on the motorbike with you. My elder brother and I wanted to go to our uncle’s house in Madurai on our motorbike. My father permitted and advised us to drive carefully. When we were just 5kms from Madurai, our bike’s back tyre got punctured. Alas ! What a pity! We were in no man’s land. Few minutes later, a motorcyclist came to us and asked whether we needed any help. He took my elder brother on his pillion to Madurai and helped him contact a mechanic. I was waiting very anxiously in a sunny afternoon on the highways till his arrival. My brother came with the mechanic. The mechanic vulcanized and fixed the wheel. We wasted about 2hrs. Since we did not have time to contact my parents and my uncle, they were worry about us. Afterwards we rode safely and reached our uncle’s house. They got relief when they saw us. We told him what had happened. My uncle advised us that whatever happened, we should inform our status to our parents. We agreed with him. That trip is unforgettable in my life.

ii) How will you organize or plan for a trip or an event? Do you have the habit of preparing a check-list? Discuss.

I organise a trip with my family to Bangalore for three days to visit all the important places. I will enquire the train schedule a week before. I will book the to and fro tickets. I will book a room for the stay in advance. And then, I prepare a check list a day before of my travel.

i) Enough dress ii) Tooth paste, brush, Shaving kit iii) Soap and towels....- iv) Enough money for travel, boarding and lodging. v) My identity card. vi) Medicines, Flash light and First aid kit vi) Tourist guide book of Bangalore.

As per the proverb, ‘Well Begun is half done’ I will plan everything carefully to make my trip so pleasant.

b) Individual Activity

Given below are a few proverbs. Prepare a short speech of two minutes on one of the proverbs.

a)        Nothing is impossible.

“Nothing is impossible”. It is proverb that gives encouragement to people. The meaning of the proverb is, ‘You can do anything’. But we must have determination and strong will power. Hillary and Tenzing met with many hardships on their expedition to Mt.Everest. But they overcame them with determination and finally reached the top of the summit. Many explorers like Columbus, James cook, Tasman, Vasco da Gama and others suffered a lot, but they achieved their goal. When Thomas Alva Edison was trying to invent an electronic bulb, many bulbs burst and he was also wounded. But he did not surrender. He continued his hard work and finally invented the electric bulb with the tungsten filament. So, nothing is impossible, if you have a strong mind and hope.

b)       Where there is a will there is a way.

The saying ‘Where there is a will there is a way’ means that if we are determined and have a willingness to do something, we shall find a way to do it successfully. We should have determination and a strong will. At times we find that we are not in a position to do certain things. It is only because we lack the interest to do it or we really do not try to do them; we do not really want to do them. When we are not interested in something, we try to find some excuses not to do it; we exaggerate things. We try to make it something impossible and hence leave it unfinished. But if we have the strong desire, we can remove all the obstacles or hindrances on our path and attain our target or goal. We will find how a keen desire and a strong determination, will make light of difficulties, and will discover the way to success.

c)        Together we can achieve more.

‘Together we can achieve more’, the phrase is used commonly at several places. This proverb means ‘unity is strength’. However, it has best been explained through the story of a farmer and his sons. The sons could not break a bundle of sticks when they were asked to do it individually however when they were asked to perform the same task jointly they could do it easily. This clearly explains that when people come together they can perform even a difficult task with ease. The greatest example is the freedom of our nation. We the people of India together protested against the British Government and got our freedom. Unity is the greatest quality of mankind. A country is strong whose citizens are united; a family is strong whose members stay together. Thus unity is important in each and every sphere of our lives.

Note: You can also include an anecdote. (Anecdote is a short amusing or interesting story about real incident or person.)

Giving instructions

We receive instructions in several places in various contexts. Giving instructions involves language abilities such as brevity , clarity and appropriacy. The imperative is normally used to deliver the instructions.

Listen to a teacher giving instructions at the Assembly Hall, on the eve of the annual examinations.

1.        Do not be late to the venue. Reach school at least 40 minutes before the examination commences.

2.        Remember to take your Admit card and ID card.

3.        Carry a pouch with pen, pencil and other stationery items you require.

4.        Use a blue or a black pen.

5.        Do not carry any paper or book or any unauthorized material into the examination hall.

6.        Follow the instructions given in the examination hall.

7.        Your presentation should be neat and the handwriting legible.

8.        Five minutes before the close of the examination, there will be a bell. Then check carefully and tie up your answer sheets together.

9.        Stop writing when the invigilator tells you to.

10.   Leave the exam hall, only after handing over your answer sheet to the invigilator.


Here are a few instructions given by a Health Inspector to a group of students, in order to prevent malaria and dengue. Complete the series adding some more important instructions.

1. Do not allow water to stagnate in and around your house.

2. Keep your surroundings clean.

3. Wear long- sleeved shirts / blouses and long pants / skirts that cover your arms and legs.

4. Use mosquito nets while sleeping.

5. Keep the doors closed and use net window screens.

6. Don’t allow to stagnate drainage near your area.

7. Use skin friendly insect repellent creams.

8. Prune the shrubs and plants near your surrounding.

9. Add kerosene oil to stagnant waters like water coolers.

10. Remove all mosquito breeding things like tubes, sacks, shoes

Now, write a set of 8 to 10 instructions for the following situations.

1. A doctor instructing a patient regarding a healthy diet and proper care after a surgery.

Sir, you have undergone a major operation on your eye. You have also been heavily drugged for the past one week. So, you must take care of your health. Please follow these instructions.

• Eat a lot of vegetables.

• Take greens thrice a week.

• Take fruits especially plantain, apple, grapes and sathukudi.

• Take wheat chapatti 5 times a week.

• Take as much milk, curd and buttermilk as you can.

• Avoid oil food, cool drinks and ice cream. Avoid junk food and snacks.

• Don’t take oil bath.

• Don’t do any exercise.

• Go to bed early.

2. A traffic police personnel to the public, as to how to move around in safety, in crowded public places during festival seasons.

• Follow the traffic rules and the traffic signal

• Use zebra crossing.

• Keep left.

• Walk on the pavement.

• Wear helmet.

• Wear seat belt

• Use indicators where necessary.

• Avoid cell phones, while driving.

• Drive within the speed limit.

• Don’t drunk and drive.

3. A mother to her children, on safety measures to be taken before leaving home on vacation.

Dear Ramesh and Deepa,

Enjoy your vacation at your uncle’s house. Please follow, what I tell you.

• Do your work yourselves. Don’t disturb uncle and aunty at most.

• Wash your clothes and plates.

• Avoid watching TV often.

• Read newspaper and books daily.

• Don’t compel your uncle and aunt to buy something.

• Spend the money whenever necessary.

• Walk along the road safely.

• Always be aware, while travelling.

• Don’t tease any one and Respect elders.

• Ring me up once a day.

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