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9th Class CBSE English Beehive

The Little Girl: 9th Class CBSE English Beehive Chapter 03

The Little Girl: NCERT 9th Class CBSE English Beehive Chapter 03

Question – The Little Girl: Given below are some emotions that Kezia felt. Match the emotions in the Column A with the items in Column B.

A B
1. fear or terror (i) father comes into her room to give her a goodbye kiss
2. glad sense of relief (ii) noise of the carriage grows fainter
3. a “funny” feeling, perhaps of understanding (iii) father comes home
(iv) speaking to father
(v) going to bed when alone at home
(vi) father comforts her and falls asleep
(vii) father stretched out on the sofa, snoring

Answer – The Little Girl:

A B
1. fear or terror (iii) father comes home
2. glad sense of relief (iv) speaking to father
3. a “funny” feeling, perhaps of understanding (v) going to bed when alone at home
(vii) father stretched out on the sofa, snoring
(i) father comes into her room to give her a goodbye kiss
(ii) noise of the carriage grows fainter
(vi) father comforts her and falls asleep

Answer the following questions in one or two sentences.

  1. Why was Kezia afraid of her father?
  2. Who were the people in Kezia’s family?
  3. What was Kezia’s father’s routine
    (i) before going to his office?
    (ii) after coming back from his office?
    (iii) on Sundays?

4. In what ways did Kezia’s grandmother encourage her to get to know her father better?

Answer:

  1. Kezia was afraid of her father because he was an authoritative person who never clearly expressed his love for her. Besides, his appearance, with his big hands, neck and mouth, made him even more scary to the little girl.
  2. Kezia’s family consisted of her mother, father, grandmother and herself.
  3. (i) Before going to his office, Kezia’s father usually went into her room to give her a casual kiss.
    (ii) After coming back from his office, he ordered for tea to brought into the drawing room. He also asked his mother to bring him the newspaper and his slippers, and Kezia to pull off his boots.
    (iii) On Sunday, Kezia’s father would stretch out on the sofa. He would cover his face with his handkerchief, put his feet on one of the cushions and sleep soundly.
  4. Kezia’s grandmother encouraged her to get to know her father better by sending her to the drawing room to talk to her parents on Sundays. She also suggested Kezia to make a pin cushion out of a beautiful piece of yellow silk as a gift for her father’s birthday.

Question: Discuss these questions in class with your teacher and then write down your answers in two or three paragraphs each.

  1. Kezia’s efforts to please her father resulted in displeasing him very much. How did this happen?
  2. Kezia decides that there are “different kinds of fathers”. What kind of father was Mr. Macdonald, and how was he different from Kezia’s father?
  3. How does Kezia begin to see her father as a human being who needs her sympathy?

Answer:

  1. As suggested by her grandmother, Kezia decided to make a pin cushion out of a beautiful piece of yellow silk for her father’s birthday. After stitching three sides of the cushion with double cotton with great care and effort, Kezia was stuck as to what to fill the cushion with. Since her grandmother was busy in the garden, she searched her Mother’s bedroom for scraps. Finally, she discovered sheets of paper on the bed table. She gathered these, tore them up and filled the cushion with the torn pieces.
    Unfortunately, her efforts to please her father not only went in vain but also had an unanticipated consequence. This was because the sheets she had torn were her father’s speech for the Port Authority. Her father scolded her for touching things that did not belong to her and punished her by hitting her palm with a ruler.
  2. Kezia decides that there are “different kinds of fathers” after secretly watching her next-door neighbour Mr Macdonald play with his children.
    Mr. Macdonald had five children. He was a doting and indulgent father who used to spend a great deal of merry time with his children. One day, Kezia saw them playing ‘tag’, while the baby, Mao, was seated on his shoulders and the two girls hung to his coat pockets and happily ran around the flower beds. Another day, she watched the boys turn the hose on Mr Macdonald and the way he playfully tried to catch them.
    Kezia’s father, on the other hand, hardly spent any time with her. Everyday, he came back home tired after his day’s work and busied himself with the newspaper sipping his evening tea. Even on Sundays, he spent his time sleeping on the sofa.
  3. With her mother and grandmother at the hospital, Kezia is left at home in the care of Alice, the cook. At night, after she is put to bed by the cook, she has a nightmare.
    She calls for her grandmother but, to her surprise, she finds her father standing near her bed. He takes her in his arms and makes her sleep next to him. Half asleep, she creeps close to him, snuggles her head under his arm, and holds tightly to his shirt. Her father asks her to rub her feet against his legs for warmth.
    Her father goes off to sleep before her. This makes her understand that he has to work hard every day and this leaves him too tired to be like Mr Macdonald. She expresses her altered feelings for her father by telling him that he has a ‘big heart’.

Question: Look at the following sentence.

There was a glad sense of relief when she heard the noise of the carriage growing fainter…
Here, glad means happy about something.
Glad, happy, pleased, delighted, thrilled and overjoyed are synonyms (words or expressions that have the same or nearly the same meaning.) However, they express happiness in certain ways.

Read the sentences below.

  • She was glad that the meeting was over.
  • The chief guest was pleased to announce the name of the winner.

1. Use an appropriate word from the synonyms given above in the following sentences. Clues are given in brackets.

  1. She was __________ by the news of her brother’s wedding. (very pleased)
  2. I was __________to be invited to the party. (extremely pleased and excited about)
  3. She was __________ at the birth of her granddaughter. (extremely happy)
  4. The coach was __________ with his performance. (satisfied about)
  5. She was very __________ with her results. (happy about something that has happened).

2. Study the use of the word big in the following sentence.

He was so big – his hands and his neck, especially his mouth…

Here, big means large in size.

Now, consult a dictionary and find out the meaning of big in the following sentences. The first one has been done for you.

  1. You are a big girl now. older
  2. Today you are going to take the biggest decision of your career. _________
  3. Their project is full of big ideas. _________
  4. Cricket is a big game in our country. _________
  5. I am a big fan of Lata Mangeshkar. _________
  6. You have to cook a bit more as my friend is a big eater. _________
  7. What a big heart you’ve got, Father dear. _________

Answer:

  1. (i) She was delighted by the news of her brother’s wedding.
    (ii) I was thrilled to be invited to the party.
    (iii) She was overjoyed at the birth of her granddaughter.
    (iv) The coach was pleased with his performance.
    (v) She was very happy with her results.
  2. (i) older
    (ii) most important
    (iii) excellent
    (iv) huge (in popularity)
    (v) great
    (vi) a lot or above average (in quantity)
    (vii) a good and kind

Question: Verbs of Reporting

Study the following sentences.

  • “What!” screamed Mother.
  • “N-n-no”, she whispered.
  • “Sit up,” he ordered.

The italicized words are verbs of reporting. We quote or report what someone has said or thought by using a reporting verb. Every reporting clause contains a reporting verb. For example:

  • He promised to help in my project.
  • “How are you doing?” Seema asked.

We use verbs of reporting to advise, order, report statements, thoughts, intentions, questions, requests, apologies, manner of speaking and so on.

  1. 1. Underline the verbs of reporting in the following sentences.
    (i) He says he will enjoy the ride.
    (ii) Father mentioned that he was going on a holiday.
    (iii) No one told us that the shop was closed.
    (iv) He answered that the price would go up.
    (v) I wondered why he was screaming.
    (vi) Ben told her to wake him up.
    (vii) Ratan apologized for coming late to the party.

2. Some verbs of reporting are given in the box. Choose the appropriate verbs and fill in the blanks in the following sentences.

were complaining          shouted           replied
remarked           ordered         suggested

  1. (i) “I am not afraid,” __________ the woman.
  2. (ii) “Leave me alone,” my mother __________.
  3. (iii) The children __________ that the roads were crowded and noisy.
  4. (iv) “Perhaps he isn’t a bad sort of a chap after all,” __________the master.
  5. (v) “Let’s go and look at the school ground,” __________ the sports teacher.
  6. (vi) The traffic police __________ all the passers-by to keep off the road.

Answer:

  1. (i) He says he will enjoy the ride.
    (ii) Father mentioned that he was going on a holiday.
    (iii) No one told us that the shop was closed.
    (iv) He answered that the price would go up.
    (v) I wondered why he was screaming.
    (vi) Ben told her to wake him up.
    (vii) Ratan apologized for coming late to the party.
  2. (i) “I am not afraid,” replied the woman.
    (ii) “Leave me alone,” my mother shouted.
    (iii) The children were complaining that the roads were crowded and noisy.
    (iv) “Perhaps he isn’t a bad sort of a chap after all,” remarked the man.
    (v) “Let’s go and look at the school ground,” suggested the sports teacher.
    (vi) The traffic police ordered all the passers-by to keep off the road.

Question: Has your life been different from or similar to that of Kezia when you were a child? Has your perception about your parents changed now? Do you find any change in your parents’ behaviour vis-a-vis yours? Who had become more understanding? What steps would you like to take to build a relationship based on understanding? Write three or four paragraphs (150-200 words) discussing these issues from your own experience.

Answer: My life has been somewhat similar to that of Kezia’s. As a child, I was punished for being naughty, even though my parents were quite loving and caring.

Yes, my perspective about my parents has changed with time. As a young child, I used to be scared of their anger at my mischief and also found them too strict for my liking. Now, I realize that they always had their best intentions in mind.

Growing up, my behaviour has changed and so has my parents’. They, too, try and see things from the perspective of a teenager. However, I feel I have become more understanding with regards to their wishes and biddings.

A relationship based on mutual understanding is of the best sort. Hence, to achieve that I would like to make as many efforts as possible on my part. Spending more time with my parents, discussing and explaining issues concerning both can help build mutual respect and regard. I would also express my appreciation for whatever they do for me and calmly convey my own expectations. Instead of getting irritated with their excessive concern, I would try to see things from their perspective.

(A model answer has been provided for students’ reference. It is strongly recommended that students prepare the answer based on their own experience and understanding.)

Question: Form pairs or groups and discuss the following questions.

  1. This story is not an Indian story. But do you think there are fathers, mothers and grandmothers like the ones portrayed in the story in our own country?
  2. Was Kezia’s father right to punish her? What kind of a person was he? You might find some of these words useful in describing him:

undemonstrative               loving              strict               hard-working
responsible            unkind            disciplinarian               short-tempered
affectionate             caring               indifferent

Answer:

  1. Even though the story is not an Indian one, we can closely associate with it because the characters portrayed are not unusual in the Indian context. Ours is a patriarchal society and authoritative fathers like Kezia’s are a standard. Similarly, suppressed wives and mothers, and doting grandmothers are commonly found in Indian households.
  2. While it was imperative to make Kezia realize her mistake and to teach her a lesson, her father should have tried to understand the child’s position as well.
    Kezia’s father comes across as a strict disciplinarian who ordered things around in the house. As a short-tempered person, he punishes Kezia for her mistake. However, it would be wrong to call him unkind since towards the end of the story we find him to be an affectionate and loving father. He is not indifferent; rather, as a responsible father who works hard all day long, he does not get time to show his love and care.

Read the passage given below and answer the questions that follow:

Question: To the little girl he was a figure to be feared and avoided. Every morning before going to work he came into her room and gave her a casual kiss, to which she responded with ‘Good Bye Father’. And oh, there Was a glad sense of relief when she heard the noise of the carriage growing fainter and fainter down the long road! ,

  1. What was the daily routine of the father?
  2. When did the daughter feel relief?
  3. Trace a word from the passage which means “answered”.

Answer:

  1. The daily routine of Kezia’s father was to visit her daughter’s room, meet her and give her a kiss before leaving for work.
  2. The daughter felt relief when the carriage went away from the house.
  3. Responded.

Question: But the same old nightmare came the butcher with a knife and a rope who came nearer and nearer, with that dreadful smile, while she could not move, only stand still, crying out “Grandma!”. She woke shivering to see father beside her bed, a candle in his hand. “What is the matter ?” he said.

  1. Why did she get the nightmare ?
  2. Where was the butcher?
  3. Find a word from the passage that means “shake in fear and cold”?

Answer:

  1. She got the nightmare as she was alone with her father at home and her mother and granny were in the hospital.
  2. The butcher was in her dream.
  3. Shivering.

Question: “But it was for your b-b- birth day.” Down came the ruler on her little, pink palms. Hours later, when grandmother had wrapped her in a shawl and rocked her in the rocking-chair, the child clung to her soft body. “What did God make fathers for?” she sobbed.

  1. Who is responding in the first line and before whom?
  2. How did the father react?
  3. Find a word from the passage that means “wept”?

Answer:

  1. Kezia is responding before her father.
  2. The father became angry and beat her pink palms with a ruler.
  3. Sobbed.

Question: On Sunday afternoon, Grandmother sent her down to file drawing room to have a “Nice talk with Father and Mother”. But the little girl always found mother reading and father stretched out on the sofa, his handkerchief on his flee, his feet on one of file best cushion, sleeping soundly and snoring.

  1. Who was ‘she’ and why did the grandmother send her down ?
  2. What did she notice about her parents ?
  3. Trace a word that means “undisturbed”.

Answer – The Little Girl:

  1. “She” is Kezia. Grandmother sent her down to have a nice talk with her parents.
  2. She noticed that her father was sleeping and snoring and mother was reading.
  3. Soundly.

Question: She sat on a stool, gravely watched him until he woke and stretched, and asked the time – then looked at her. “Don’t stare so, Kezia. You look like a little brown owl”.

  1. Who is Kezia watching gravely?
  2. Why was she sitting there waiting for him to wake up?
  3. Trace the word in the extract which means “seriously”.

Answer – The Little Girl:

  1. Kezia was watching her father gravely.
  2. On a Sunday afternoon, her grandmother sent her to have a nice talk with father and mother. But Kezia always found her father sleeping on the sofa.
  3. Gravely.

Question: What orders were passed to Kezia in the evening when father returned home from office?

Answer: When Kezia’s father returned home from office she was supposed to come down, take off father’s shoes and put them outside. She was also to put her father’s teacup on file tea table.

Question: Why did Kezia avoid her father?

Answer: Kezia avoided her father because according to her, her father was an emotionless person. He never spoke to Kezia lovingly and calmly. He scolded Kezia and reprimanded her for making mistakes. Kezia stammered in front of her father since he was a very huge and giant like figure far away from the warmth of a father.

Question: Why did Kezia stammer in front of her father?
Or
Why did Kezia stutter only with her father?

Answer – The Little Girl: Kezia father always scolded her never spoke to her in a loving manner. So, Kezia stammered in front of her father because she was afraid of him and found it difficult to speak in front of him.

Question: Why was Kezia afraid of her father?

Answer: Kezia was a little sensitive girl. Her father was aggressive and always spoke loudly. He always scolded her. He used to beat her. Even when she accepted her mistakes. He never played with her. This made her afraid of her father.

Question: What made Kezia’s father punish her?

Answer – The Little Girl: She tore important papers of her father to stuff in the pin cushion because she was making a gift to present to her father. Since the papers had her father’s speech written on it, she was punished for tearing it.

Question: “Father’s great speech for the Port Authority had been lost.” What had happened to father’s speech?

Answer: Father’s speech had been tom to pieces by Kezia, the little girl. She was making a pin cushion as a gift to her father, for his birthday. As she was not able to find anything to stuff it with, she tore the speech and stuffed it in her cushion.

Question: Why did Kezia’s grandmother send her to the drawing room every Sunday afternoon?

Answer – The Little Girl: Kezia’s grandmother knew that she was afraid of her father and she felt that if she spoke to him more often, she would gq£ rid of that fear. So, every Sunday afternoon she used to send her to the drawing room to have a nice talk with her father.

Question: What kind of a person was Kezia’s father?

Answer: Kezia’s father was a hard working man but short tempered. He was a strict disciplinarian too. When Kezia’s mother was hospitalized, Kezia realized that her father loved her but didn’t have the art of expressing his love.

Question: What did Kezia find whenever on Sunday afternoons her grandmother sent her down to have a talk with her parents?

Answer: Whenever Kezia was sent by her grandmother to talk to her parents on Sunday afternoons, she always found her mother reading and her father stretched out on the sofa, sleeping soundly and snoring.

Question: How was Kezia’s father different from Mr. McDonalds?

Answer – The Little Girl: Mr. McDonalds played with his children. The girls would hang on to his coat, they would laugh together. Kezia’s father had no time for such things. He really worked very hard for the family.

Question: How did the father comfort the little girl, Kezia, when she got scared in her sleep?

Answer – The Little Girl: The father came to Kezia’s room with a candle, lifted her up in his strong arms, lay beside her and made her stay close to him. She held his shirt and snuggled herself close to her father. This comforted Kezia when she got scared in her sleep.

Question: How did Kezia’s negative attitude towards her father change?
Or
What were the circumstances that forced Kezia to change her opinion about her father?

Answer: When her mother was hospitalized, her grandmother went to stay with her. Kezia used to sleep alone at night. She was so scared that she started shouting at night. She had nightmares and trembled a lot with fear. Then her father came to her room and took her into his aims to comfort her. She felt secured with her father near her. Then she realized that her father was busy with work and had no time to play. She even realized that her father loved her but didn’t have the art of expressing it. Thus, her attitude towards her father changed towards positive.

Question: How did Kezia’s efforts to please her father resulted in displeasing him veiy much? Elaborate.

Answer – The Little Girl: Kezia was very scared of her father and stuttered while talking to him. This annoyed him a lot. When she waited and stared at him to have a nice long chat, he did not like it. She unknowingly destroyed some of his important papers while stuffing a cushion which die wanted to present to . him on his birthday. This made him very angry and he beat her up badly. Therefore, Kezia’s efforts to please her father resulted in displeasing him very much.

Question: Kezia decides that there are “different kinds of fathers”. What kind of father was Mr. McDonald, and how was he different from Kezia’s father?
Or
How is Kezia’s father different from Mr. McDonald?

Answer – The Little Girl: Mr. McDonald was their next door neighbour. Once Kezia saw her neighbours playing “tag” together in the evening. Mr. McDonald with the baby Mao, on his shoulders and the two little girls hanging on to his coat pockets. They ran round and round shaking with laughter. On the other hand, her own father was very disciplined and strict. He never played with her and neither interact much. He even beat her up for her little mistakes.

Question: Why was Kezia scared of her father and how did she get over her fear?

Answer – The Little Girl: Kezia’s father was big like a giant and was very strict. He punished Kezia when she tore his important speech. One day, when Kezia’s mother fell ill, her mother and grandmother were in the hospital. Kezia was left alone with her father at home. She had a nightmare and screamed with fright. Her father then carried Kezia in his lap to comfort and soothen her. That closeness with her father during those days made her forget all fears.

Question: How did Kezia feel in present of her father?

Answer – The Little Girl: Kezia was scared of her father as he looked like a giant. Every morning he used to give her a good bye kiss. She used to feel uncomfortable till her father was at home. She even stammered while answering him. He scolded her one day and even beat her for tearing some of his important papers.

But when Kezia used to cry during the night, he would carry her to his room. She then realized that her father was actually tender and affectionate and this changed her perception towards him.

Question: Kezia in the story “The Little Girl” was afraid of her father because he never communicated with her. Imagine you are parenting councellor, based on your reading of the story write a paragraph advising the parents to make communication with their children priority.

Answer: In the story, Kezia is always scared of her father. Her father was a strict disciplinarian who was always strict towards her. He never spoke to her softly and in a loving manner. He always scolded her and even beat her up for small mistakes. Parents should not let their stress and workload interfere in their family life. Parents should always spend quality time with their children. Bonding and understanding should always be there so that the children can open up their feelings and problems with their parents. Their should be no communication gap between the parents and their children.

Question – The Little Girl: The relation between a parent and child should be distant and formal or should it be close and warm.

Answer – The Little Girl: In today’s modem context parents and children should be more like friends. The relationship between them should be warm and close. This would be very helpful in developing the overall personality of the child. It also helps in boosting the confidence of the child and making him more strong in his relation. Therefore, it is necessary that children share a close relation with their parents and there should be no fear but only respect and love.

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