DEAR June 15th

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Lord of the Flies is definitely the best novel my brother offered me, it’s also the best novel I’ve read. I really liked it due to its brilliantly put together story plot and characters. I also liked it cause it’s the only book that made me read it over and over again.

The dystopian story is about the struggle of survival and man power after recovering from a plane crash in a remote island in the Pacific. The survivors are only middle childhood boys. The main characters consist of Ralph, probably the most [...]

DEAR ‘The Color Purple’ by Alice Walker

I have started reading ‘The Color Purple’ by Alice Walker. This book is set in rural Georgia in America during the 1930s. It tells the tale of the life of Celie, a young black African American girl, through a series of letters she writes to God. Celie faces abuse, rape and domestic violence and this book tells these issues explicitly to the reader so as to emphasise the life of poor, black women at the time (their low position in American culture). The quote I have chosen is taken from the part of the novel when Harpo’s girlfriend, Squeak, has [...]

June 15th Journal Entry – The Year Of Living Biblically

The Year Of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest To Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs is a book in which the author is writing about his adventurous year of following most of the laws of the Bible for a year. It is hard to choose a favourite quotation form the whole book as there are many interesting and meaningful quotations to choose from, but my most thought about phrase is,

“. . . my obsession with gratefulness. I can’t stop. Just now, I press the elevator button and am thankful that it arrives quickly. I [...]

Y10 —> Y11 Summer Work

Required of all students DEAR reading 7 days / week Freerice vocabulary work 3 days / week Optional work #1 Revise all the set texts (stories and poems) that we have studied in class this year. Optional work #2 Read all the set texts (stories and poems) that we have not yet studied. Optional work #3 Read some essays by George Orwell and/or Paul Graham as models of good writing. Optional work #4 Follow the advice given in “How to improve your English”.


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A horse and two goats response

A horse and two goats is a comedy, albeit not a very good one. It has the elements that could make it funny, they are just not used effectively. The older meaning of comedy (where the story has a happy ending) does not apply here either, as Muni’s wife left to stay with her family at the end, Muni’s community loses their horse statue (which is now forgotten and overgrown), and the goats are left with no owner. The current meaning of the word comedy is not applicable either, as while it does try to be funny, with the two [...]

‘A Horse and Two Goats’ Response

Even though ‘A Horse and Two Goats’ may not initially stand out as a comedy, R.K. Narayan has made the clash between Indian and Western culture humorous by making Muni and the American tourist have very different characters. In the beginning of the story Muni is described as a poor, uneducated, old man whose ‘fortunes had declined gradually’ as he surrendered to poverty and his low status in the Hindu caste system. This contrasts against the image of the American man with his ‘red-face’ and ‘khaki clothes’, which is stereotypical of the wealthy, seemingly educated, Western tourist. It is an [...]

What details in the story tell us that “A Horse and Two Goats” is a comedy?

Muni is from a small village by the name of kitram. Muni is a old deprived man living alongside his wife who are both poor. In the beginning, Muni is begging his wife to make him some drumsticks, but he does not have all the ingredients. In order to receive the food Muni is required to get the necessary ingredients. These details create a comedy for the story, as Muni has to fetch the what he needs in order to eat his breakfast most of the mornings. In the end of the story Muni encounters a strange american business [...]

‘A Horse and Two Goats’ by R.K. Narayan

‘A Horse and Two Goats’ is a comedy because of the characters misunderstanding each other due to the different languages being spoken. The main aspect of this story focuses on Muni and the American attempting to have a casual conversation, however both the foreigner and Muni are talking about completely separate things. For example Muni is desperate to sell his two goats to an American in exchange for a hundred rupees, however the American is interested in the statue of the horse. However due to a language barrier, the American winds up having both the goats. Munis’ belief in the [...]

What details in the story tell us that “A Horse and Two Goats” is a comedy?

The communication between Muni and the American is intended to be comical. Muni and the American do not speak the same language resulting in a miscommunication. For example in the beginning of the conversation Muni thinks that the American is a police officer and that he is going to arrest him for a murder. Meanwhile the American is discussing New York, his occupation and his house. If the were to speak the same language the miscommunication would be resolve quite quickly, but because they do not speak the same language this continues for a long time and this is funny. [...]

What details in the story tell us that “A Horse and Two Goats” is a comedy?

The story “A Horse and Two Goats” is a comedy. Throughout the story it is shown in distinct ways that it is a comedy, it is distinct for us since this story was published in the 20th century (more specific in 1970), and we are use to the 21st century form of writing. Comedy can mean two things. One that is ends happily and two that it is a funny story throughout the story. What I actually found funny in the story is this, “The shopman paid no attention to him. Muni kept clearing his throat, coughing, and sneezing until [...]

May 15th DEAR Post – Insurgent

Previously in my last DEAR post Tris and her group were welcomed to stay in the Amity sector to hide themselves from the Erudites. Now the Erudites and a few enslaved Dauntless found the escaped group and started shooting them. Once again they manage to escape despite the losses on the way.

“Tobias turns toward me. “What was that, Tris?” he says. “What?” I say, and I am ashamed of how weak my voice sounds. I don’t know whether he’s talking about Peter or what came before or something else. “You froze! Someone was about to kill you and you [...]

May 15th DEAR post

Death Cure by James Dashner

I’ve recently finished reading Death Cure. Death Cure is the third book in the Maze Runner Trilogy written by Jams Dashner.

The entire Trilogy is about children being used as test subjects as part of a trail ran by the company ‘WICKED’. The test began when a new disease that goes by the name of ‘Flare’ began an international pandemic. Children were randomly selected by WICKED as part of their research in search of a cure, hence the title of the novel. Thomas, the main character, and a few hundred other test subjects find [...]

DEAR: “Feed” by M.T. Anderson

I have finished the entertaining novel, “Feed”. I did not write a middle entry journal, because I have already finished it in less than one month. The book “Feed” is not a novel I would expect myself to read. I have never heard of this novel until I was introduced to it by the librarian. This novel is about the future, and how a transition device is transmitted into your brain. You can virtually talk to the people around you with thinking words. It is science fiction, and has sci-fi and very little romance (did not see that coming). I [...]

May 15 DEAR Journal

I am currently reading a book called “To kill a mocking bird” by Harper Lee. The story happens in America. In 1930s, severe racism existed between Anglo and others. Also a big economic depression raid on. Everyone was undergoing a hard time in their life. This book is about one family living in the 1930s. Dad, Atticus, is a famous lawyer. He works for the Alabama. He has two children- Jem, the older brother and Scout the younger sister. Jem is now undergoing puberty, so he is quite offensive to the society. His sister Scout is a young girl, who [...]

May 16th DEAR journal entry.

The book thief is by Markus Zusak, who has created a very thought-provoking novel. The story is narrated by death itself. Liesel (Main Character of book) is experiencing tough times as its based in 1939, this being the beginning of the holocaust. Liesel alongside her mother and brother(Werner) are being taken to the small town of Molching, just outside of Munich, Germany, to live with foster parents Hans and Rosa Hubermann. when riding on the train, Werner suddenly dies of random causes. Liesel and her mother are shocked and dont know what to do. They face a build up of [...]

DEAR ‘Persuasion’ by Jane Austen

I finished reading the novel ‘Persuasion’ on Wednesday this week. I generally liked this book, even though the story took a few slightly boring twists and turns, it was still mostly enjoyable. As you may have guessed from the title, the main theme of this novel is ‘persuasion’; can we be persuaded to do something that goes against our better judgement, and will we always be left to live with the regret of not making that decision for ourselves? In this Jane Austen novel, the character of Anne Elliot is persuaded to refuse Captain Wentworth’s proposal by her close friend [...]

Instructions for the Literature exam (Y10, May 2014)

Instructions to Candidates


•Time allowed: 1 hour 30 minutes

•There are two sections in this examination:

SECTION 1: POETRY tests your knowledge and understanding of the poems from your list of set texts that you have studied up to this point in the course.

SECTION 2: PROSE (SHORT STORIES) tests your knowledge and understanding of the short stories from your list of set texts that you have studied up to this point in the course.

•You must answer TWO questions, one from SECTION 1, and the other from SECTION 2.

•You should [...]

‘The Destructors’ Response

By giving the character of ‘T’ different personality traits to the other boys, Graham Greene marks this character out as superior to the members of the ‘Wormsley Common gang’. The instant difference between ‘T’ and the other boys in the gang is that he is ‘the new recruit’. He has not been a member for a long time (like Mike, Blackie and Summers) and consequently is given a position of low authority within the group. However, even though ‘T’ should only be able to assert a low level of control, the factor of his unpredictability must be taken into account. [...]

“Destructors” about “T” and the other boys

In the short story, “The Destructors”, ‘T’ is different from all the other boys. ‘T’ is a nickname for Trevor. Trevor became the new leader of the Wormsley Common gang. He deserved to get it and gained it. Trevor is described as a more mature kid. He follows by the rules and does not do any kind of non-sense. While the other kids are mucking about. Boys will be boys but also they need to take some stuff seriously. “Mike laughed suddenly and then was quite again. The meeting was in a serious mood.” Mike is just 9 years old, [...]

Response- The Destructors

The people who were related with gangs were not really allowed to speak about their personal thoughts. They were all obeying to the rule. But when they were having a meeting for the ideas about pinching the old house, T comes late while others were very punctual. Also, he was not involved in the election, which was essential to everyone. He went to Old Misery’s instead. Though he was late and did not follow the rules, he speaks out his own opinion. Despite he was bit nervous, he was the first one to say something with courage. At first, gangs [...]

“The Destructors” – Response to Prompt

In the story The Destructors by Graham Greene the protagonist, “T” is portrayed as different from the others as all of the things he does and his ideas are very different from his companions. For example he does not want to steal, we can see this in the story when he suggests that their gang (Wormsley Common gang) should destroy Old Misery’s (Mr Thomas) house, after this is proposed he is asked by several members of the group if they are going to steal, they sounded keen on it. But he refused, which shows that he is different. Another example [...]

What details mark out “T.” as different from the other boys?

T. Who is commonly known as Trevor is a normal kid living In London’s WW2 ruins. He is among his friends ( mike blackie and joe) who work in a gang called the Worsley common underground station. In the summer these adolescent teens perform various mischiefs. T. Is the leader of this group and is somewhat the mastermind of crimes they attempt to commit. The others in this group are like T.”s minions who do what he says. “T. Raised eyes, as grey and distributed as the drab august day. ‘Well pull it down,’ he said. We’ll destroy it.’ Blackie [...]

Dylan Thomas reading ‘A Child’s Christmas in Wales’

If you would like to listen again to Dylan Thomas reading, try this YouTube video:

(No video, just an unidentified old photo, but the sound is the important thing anyway.)

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Year 10 End-of-Year Examinations

Year 10 exams will be given beginning May 23rd.

Language: a complete past paper. To review the structure of the Language exam, look over the past papers you have and read this:

Literature: A modified Paper 1 with two sections, one about poetry, the other about short stories. (There will be no Paper 3, and no Paper 1 questions about drama, as we have not yet studied our set play.)

Poems to revise: Wordsworth, “Sonnet Composed Upon Westminster Bridge”; Halligan, “The Cockroach”; Bhatt, “A Different History”; Hopkins, “Pied Beauty”.

Stories to revise: “The Son’s Veto”, “Her First [...]

Dylan Thomas – Personal Response

At first reading Dylan Thomas’s poems they seemed sad and depressed. I could not see why anyone would enjoy reading them, because while they were good, they seemed shallow and all about sadness and death with lines like “Do not go gentle into that good night” and “Wise men at the end know dark is right”, it is hard to not think that the poems are telling of the coming doom of everyones lives. All of the poems (at least the ones that we read) are like this, very poetic but very sad. Even the titles are like this with [...]

May 1st (-ish) Dear Journal

Currently I am reading a book which is a collection of stories by Anton Chekhov. My favorite quotation from the book so far is

“…Is it really possible to be so spineless? Why don’t you protest? Why be silent? Is it possible in this world to be without teeth and claws – to be such a nincompoop?

This quotation is from the story “A nincompoop”. This is said by ‘The Father’ to the young governess with who he is discussing her payment, he deducts crazy and random ‘fees’ from from her salary like a ripped jacket of one of [...]

“Cherub” May 1st Dear Post “The Recruit”

The book is written by Robert Muchamore, and is a thriller and spy novel. Why did I borrow the book in the first place? I thought it must have a very interesting plot, seeing that this series of books have become one of the most borrowed series in the library. It turns out that the book is actually quite interesting, despite the infrequent sentences that contain a bit too much detail about slightly inappropriate things. The story is about a teenager called James. His mother dies in the first 30 pages because she was taking aspirins while drinking alcohol. The [...]

Dylan Thomas

He is Welsh. He smokes cigarette. He was born in 1914. He was one of the best lyric poets. Jimmy Carter, the former American president liked his poems. He also read one of Dylan’s poems in the radio broadcast. His poem has lots of rhymes. Using those rhymes, it sounds like he is singing a song when he reads it. When he reads his poem, he sounds like an old man when he reads a poem. His poem “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night is a villanelle. It has 19 lines.” He also wrote a short story about [...]

Personal Response on Dylan Thomas

Dylan Thomas is famous poet who grew up in Swansea, Wales. While writing numerous poems such as “A Childs Christmas in Wales”, “Do Not Go Gentle In That Good Night”, he also acquired fame as an excessive smoker and excessive drinker. Thomas was on track to a wonderful career, but had sadly drank his life way. Resulting in his death on 9 November 1953 (aged 39) New York City, United States. Thomas’s poems really brought back memories about my childhood and my what is going to come in the future. This really raised the question of what my life will [...]

May 1st Dear Post 7th Heaven

I just recently started reading 7th Heaven by James Patterson. So far from the 30 pages that I have read, it seems to be interesting. Even though I have not read any of the other 6 books in this series, they do not seem to be very related, so I am able to jump into the series quite quickly. It is about a boy that gets kidnapped. Thats sort of all I know right now. But it seems to be exciting so far. I will most likely update this post and add some information once I have read a bit [...]

Dylan Thomas

A Child’s Christmas in Wales. It is a good story, well written but not all that it could be. The way Dylan Thomas writes attracts your ears but it doesn’t stimulate the mind as much as it perhaps could. Many things in this story made me wonder about my childhood and helped me to reflect on my present and future. For example the way that there is chaos in the house, I can relate to this through the chaos in my life. In the story the firemen come to put the fire out. This makes me wonder when the firemen [...]

May 1st DEAR post

The Catcher In The Rye

The Catcher In the Rye is a novel written by J.D. Salinger. I haven’t found it as interesting as the other novels I read. But that’s probably because I’ve only made it to page 105 so far. But as to this point I would rate it 6.5/10.

“You remember I said before that Ackley was a slob in his personal habits? Well, so was Stradlater, but in a different way. Stradlater was more of a secret slob. He always looked all right, Stradlater, but for instance, you should’ve seen the razor he shaved himself with. [...]

Middle of the book DEAR post – “Insurgent” by Veronica Roth

Tris, Tobias, and the rest of those who accompanied them arrived at the Amity sector, where they have been welcomed to stay until they find somewhere else to live under some conditions, which are that no weapons are allowed in the compound and no one should be involved in any sort of conflict, verbal or physical. One night Tris dreams about her friend, Will, and wakes up with grief taking over her as she has not only killed her friend but also both her parents died for her in an event before the start of this book. She creeps down [...]

The Extraordinary Cases of Sherlock Holmes- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

In the beginning of ‘The Adventure of the Speckled Band’, Dr Watson, the narrator in all of the Sherlock Holmes books, talks about the types of cases that Sherlock associates himself with.

On glancing over my notes of the seventy-odd cases in which I have during the last eight years studied the methods of my friend Sherlock Holmes, I find many tragic, some comic, a large number merely strange, but none commonplace; for, working as he did rather for the love of his art than for the acquirement of wealth, he refused to associate himself with any investigation [...]

DEAR – Dracula (the book) – Middle of the book DEAR post

“These do not at the first appear much” this is (so far) my favorite quotation, as it describes the book most efficiently with it’s eight simple words. This quotation is said by Dr. Van Helsing as he recruit others to help to kill Dracula, after he realises (and has convinced the other characters) that there is a vampire and recorded in Mina Harker’s diary (the book consists of diaries and letters). The book has almost nothing to do with any of the Dracula movies, and indeed with most books. I like the quotation because the book appears to be very [...]

DEAR: kite runner by Khaled Hoseini

There are 2 boys living in Afghanistan is this story- Amir and Hassan. Amir is in “Pashitun,” which is the highest level in Afghani caste, and Hassan is in the lowest level called “Hazara”. These two are best friends. They always hang out, watch movie, and participate in kite running games, and play board games together. But as the time passes, they realize that they cannot be friends. They start to confuse about their identity. One day, Amir gets jealous of Hassan. Though Hassan was in the lower social class, he was better in everything than Amir- just except that [...]

DEAR Journal Entry ” Hunger Games ” May 1st

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lays the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve districts fighting for survival. Each year, the districts are forced by the Capitol to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the Hunger Games, a brutal and terrifying fight to the death – televised for all of Panem to see. Once on the battlefield they will fight till one person remains.

At one o’clock, we head for the square. Attendance is mandatory unless you are on death’s door. This [...]

DEAR Journal: “CHERUB” by Robert Muchamore

I have just finished the extraordinary novel “Cherub” by Robert Muchamore. This novel has been the best novel I have read in 2014. I give it a rating of 9.5/10. I was very entertained while I read, I really focused on what going on. This book has action, adventure, entertainment, catastrophes, and much more good stuff. The people who might enjoy it is the ones that like this categories, although I recommend this novel to all the young kids. The people who will not enjoy this are most probably adults who might feel this novel is to childish for them. [...]

DEAR ‘Persuasion’ by Jane Austen

The novel ‘Persuasion’ tells the story of Anne Elliot, the middle daughter of Sir Walter Elliot and sister of Elizabeth and Mary Elliot. Overshadowed by her conceited father and sister, Anne is given an opportunity to escape her family and lead her own life when she falls in love with Captain Wentworth. However in a hasty decision in which she lets the views of her family and friends rule over her judgement, she refuses his proposal and is left to deal with the consequences of her actions. The quotation I have chosen comes from just after Anne’s decision to decline [...]

Her First Ball: How does Katherine Mansfield make us wonder whether happiness is only an illusion?

By contrasting the characters of Leila and the ‘fat man’ against each other, Katherine Mansfield creates the idea that happiness is only an illusion. When Leila first enters the ball she views the events that take place with a youthful optimism procured from her inexperience of the situation. She even ‘tried not to smile too much’ at the ‘joyful flutter’ and the ‘marvellous music’ of the occasion. However, amongst all this happiness and wonder Mansfield places the ‘fat man’ in order to contradict Leila. This old man-who has done all this before and attended his fair share of balls-juxtaposes Leila’s [...]

The son’s veto sympathy for mother

The story starts with her (Sophy’s) hair, this seeming unimportant detail helps show the boringness of her life, and the lack of something to do but spend hours daily doing her hair. The way she is treated by her son, from the start to the finish of the story, also helps create sympathy. The lack of thought for his mother, starting with his correction of her grammar “has dear mother – not have” (and her adoption of his correction) and ending with him refusing that she can marry Sam Hobson “I owe this to my father”, whilst we know that [...]

Her First Ball: what makes us wonder whether happiness is only an illusion

     The perspective Leila has on her first ball before and after her conversation with the “fat man” drives us to think that happiness is only an illusion, which means we can choose to be happy. Before Leila arrived at the ball she “tried not to smile too much; she tried not to care. But every single thing was so new and exciting… Meg’s tuberoses, Jose’s long loop of amber, Laura’s little dark head, pushing above her white fur like a flower through snow. She would remember for ever. It even gave her a pang to see her cousin Laurie throw [...]

Katherine Mansfield’s happiness

Katherine Mansfield makes us wonder whether happiness is only a illusion by changing Leila’s emotions. At first Leila is thrilled that she has been invited to her first ball ever. She is filled with excitement or is she?. Everything that occurs around her, she imagines as if she is already enjoying herself at the ball. “the bolster on which her hand rested felt like the sleeve of an unknown young man’s dress suit”, Leila was in the cab on her way to the ball, her hand was resting and she imagined that it was a mans arm. Already cheerful thoughts [...]

How does Katherine Mansfield make us wonder whether happiness is only an illusion?

Katherine Mansfield uses the old man to make us wonder whether happiness is only an illusion. Before meeting the old man, the main character, Leila, is filled with overwhelming excitement and joy at being at her vert first ball. When she dances with her first two partners Leila is blissfully happy and finds everything about the hall, from the floor to the music, beautiful. That is, until, she dances with the old man. In this story, the old man represents the ‘reality’ of what’s going to happen in the future and Mansfield uses him to show us that perhaps happiness [...]

How Thomas Hardy creates sympathy for Sophy in The Son’s Veto

     Thomas Hardy drives the readers to sympathise with Sophy as her son, Randolph, drifts further apart from her because of his education, social classes, and the way he treats her. Towards the start of the story already, we learn that Randolph is spoiled and corrects his mother instead of her doing her parent’s duty; “‘Has, dear mother – not ‘have’!’ exclaimed the public-school boy, with an impatient fastidiousness that was almost harsh. ‘Surely you know that by this time!’ His mother hastily adopted the correction, and did not resent his making it, or retaliate, as she might well have done, [...]

(late) Middle of the book DEAR 15th April post – Catcher In The Rye

Later on after Holden arrived at Central Park where he used to see the ducks as a child, he is freezing and decides to sneak in his own apartment to see Phoebe, his little sister. After he tells her that he has been expelled from Pencey, Phoebe becomes mad at him and threatens him that their father is going to “kill” him. At a certain point during Holden and his sister’s conversation he tells her about his fantasy.

“Anyway, I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little [...]

How does Hardy create sympathy with Sophy

By showing Sophy’s life in this short story, Hardy creates sympathy with Sophy. In this novel, Sophy is depicted as a woman who does not really has her own life. She is even ignored by his son, Randolph. Her son rejects her marriage with Sam, which is the man she likes. Even she lives every day like this, she seems that she admits her situation an never complain to anyone to make her life better. In fact, Sophy is disabled and is in very low social class. She caanot actually do anything in her own without help. Compared with Sophy, [...]

April 15th Dear Post

I recently read a book called Fight Game. It is filled with excitement. There is an event at every turn. There is always something happening to the main character ‘Freedom Smith’. As a gypsy he has gotten into a lot of trouble with the law. Because of this he is forced to strike a deal with the police and together they work together to take down an illegal fighting ring. If someone is looking for something easy that still keeps you on your toes, this is the book for you. I would recommend this book for readers aged 10 to [...]

DEAR POST- Kite Runner by Khaled Hoseini

Currently I am reading a book called “The Kite Runner” By Khaled Hoseini. The story starts in Kabul, which is the capital city of Afghanistan. There are two main character-Hassan and Amir. Afghanistan has something similar with caste system. They distinguish in 2 different levels, which are Pashituns and Hazaras. Hazaras are in much lower social position compared with Pashituns. In this story, Amir is Pashitun and Hassan is Hazara. They are best friends, but in fact on is something like- a slave that has to work under other. Hassan is a very clever boy. He is very brave, [...]

The Son’s Veto: What details in the story make us sympathize with the mother?

In ‘The Son’s Veto’, Thomas Hardy makes us feel sympathy towards Sophy because of how badly she is treated by her son. Randolph’s condescending manner towards his mother makes us see Sophy as a victim who is belittled by her child. Even within the first dialogue between the two characters Randolph is already picking on Sophy’s mistakes and taunting her with her past life. ‘ ‘He have been so comfortable these last few hours that I am sure he cannot have missed us,’ she replied. ‘Has, dear mother- not have!’ exclaimed the public-school boy.’ It is clear from this quote [...]

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