Day- 9

Language Focus

The past Time


Input Time

Please read

The Past Time can be expressed in four different ways:

1. By using the Past Simple
2. By using the Past Continuous
3. By using the Past Perfect
4. By using the Past Perfect Continuous



• Last summer I was in Madagascar. My parents were with me, too.
• A Malagasy narrated the history of Madagascar. It was interesting.
• We were very happy.
• Madagascar was an uninhabited island for centuries.
• About 800 A.D. Arabs started sailing to Madagascar.
• Sea faring people of Southeast Asia were the first voyagers who set foot on Madagascar.
• Diego Dias who was blown off course on the way to India landed in Madagascar on August 10, 1500. He named the island St. Lawrence.
• In the 1500 s Portuguese, French, Dutch, and English traders made several attempts to establish business in Madagascar.
• All their attempts failed because natives of Madagascar were hostile to the Europeans.
• A fifteen year old Erasmus discovered South Africa’s first diamond on the banks of the Orange River near Hopetown.
• The Eureka Diamond was the first diamond discovered in South Africa.

We use the past simple to show that an action occurred generally, repeatedly or continually during a period in the past.


• My grandpa served in the army during the freedom struggle.
• My brother and I went to school together when we were in the village.
• In her younger days grandma always walked to the market.
• We spent our early childhood in South Africa.
• I lived in Denmark until I was twenty.
• They spent a week with the Rogers in France last summer.

The past simple is used to talk about wishes.


        > We use past tense modals would and could to talk about wishes for the future:

> I don’t like my school. I wish I could go to a better school.
> That’s a dark and dusty room. I wish I would clean it first.
> I always have to get up early. I wish I could sleep a little longer.

        > We use past tense forms to talk about wishes for the present:

• London is very crowded. I wish I lived somewhere in a village.
• Our neighbors often pick quarrels and make noise. I wish they lived in harmony.
• School children always wish they had fun loving young teachers.
• I wish our politicians and religious heads weren’t so corrupt.

> A past tense doesn’t always have a past meaning. It can have a present or future meaning as well.


• Maya behaves as if she hailed from a royal family.
• If I had the money now I would start a school.
• It’s time you went to office.
• I’m busy at the moment – I’d rather you came tomorrow.


Interaction Time

On Achieving Great Fluency

Guide: Good morning, Isabel!

Isabel: Happy good morning, sir!

Guide: By the way, do you speak English fluently?

Isabel: I’m sorry I don’t and that’s why I don’t get a job.

Guide: Well, you don’t have to worry about it because English is easy to learn. Do you want to speak English fluently?

Isabel: Of course, I want to achieve great fluency in a short period of time. How do people generally build up fluency?

Guide: Very simple, by listening to English and speaking English people generally achieve fluency. Well, you have a sweet voice so people will listen to you. One more thing, your stories must be short and sweet, too. So make sure your stories are short and sweet.

Isabel: Thank you for the compliment and advice. But, um where do we get short and sweet stories?

Guide: They are within you, well within you. All you have to do is to discover them, write them, read them and narrate them to anyone you come across. Would you like to have some sample stories?

Isabel: I hope so.

Guide: Here you are. Read our stories to start with. One day I’ll listen to your stories. Good luck, Isabel.

Isabel: Thank you so much.

Guide: You are welcome.

1. Do you believe in ghosts?

One fine morning a religious preacher preached a sermon on gods and ghosts. Sermon over, the preacher asked the congregation whether they believed in gods or ghosts. The question astonished everyone. What a nice surprise! An elderly lady stood up and asked the preacher if he believed in ghosts. To everyone’s shock, the preacher said ‘no’ and vanished.

2. Mr. Perfect

Mr. Perfect wanted to be perfect in everything he did. As usual he got ready and went to the dining hall for breakfast. His wife said breakfast was not ready yet. Hungry and angry he hurried out and called for his driver. As there was no response he lost his temper and booked a cab. The cab arrived in a couple of minutes and Mr. Perfect boarded the vehicle in haste. Fortunately there was no traffic so Mr. Perfect reached his office in good time. Unfortunately, the office door had not been opened yet. Furious as he was, he shouted at the security guard to open the office. Shaking with fear, the guard told Mr. Perfect as it was a public holiday no one had reported to work. Mr. Perfect realized that he himself had declared a holiday to the office but he had forgotten that.


3.Professional Preachers

On an auspicious day a professional preacher preached a long sermon on the evils of wasting time. One by one the congregation left the place of worship. The preacher wondered why everybody left. Later it transpired that people understood time was precious and priceless for everyone. So they left there to use their time properly.

4. Chinese Stories (Interactive)
You are welcome to interact with your guide.

At the beginning of time the world was nothing but a great, swirling, black mass. The skies and the earth were not separated; the sun and the moon were still unformed; the seas and mountains had not taken shape. It looked like a great dark murky egg.

Guide: Hello, Sophie! Are you ready to interact with me?

Sophie: Well, I am.

Guide: What was the world like in the beginning?

Sophie: -------------------------------------------------------

Guide: Were the skies and the earth separated?


Guide: How about the sun and the moon?

Sophie: --------------------------------------------------------

Guide: And the seas and mountains?


Guide: What did the world look like?


In this egg the giant Pan Gu was born. He grew up in the darkness and slept for many thousands of years. When he finally woke up he decided he would create order in the world.

Guide: Who was born in that egg?


Guide: Where did he grow up?


Guide: How long did he sleep?


Guide: What did he decide to do when he woke up?


He took an axe in his hands and split the egg apart. The lighter parts in the egg rose up and became the sky, the heavier parts sank down to form the earth.

Guide: How did Pan Gu split the egg apart?

Sophie: -----------------------------------------------------

Guide: What happened when the egg was split apart?


Pan Gu did not want the sky and earth to crash together again so he stretched as much as he could. He pushed the sky up with his hands and stamped the earth down with his feet. He stayed like this for many centuries until he was sure the sky and earth were solid enough not to fall together again.

Guide: Why did Pan Gu push the sky up and stamp the earth down?


Guide: How long did he stay like that?


Pan Gu was now very weary and tired. He decided to rest and soon fell asleep. He was so old and tired that he fell into a deeper and deeper sleep. Slowly he drifted away into death.

Guide: What made him fall asleep?


Guide: How did he die?


When he died something very peculiar happened. His breath turned into the wind and clouds. His voice became thunder. His left eye became the moon and his right eye became the sun. The mountains and rivers in the world grew out of his body and limbs. The hairs on his body turned into trees, flowers and plants. Even the ticks that lived on his body turned into the animals and fishes of the earth. So we have the giant Pan Gu to thank for the world and everything in it.

Guide: Could you enlighten us on what happened when he died?

Sophie: Of course with pleasure!-------------------------------------------------------------

Guide: Great! We simply enjoy every syllable of your narration.


Guide: Do we have to thank Pan Gu? What for?


Guide: Congratulations, Sophie. Your narration was simple, clear, vivid and interesting.


Activity-1: Describe a truly memorable experience.

Model Presentation

The Scary Dino Cricket.

It was on October 6, 2018, a pleasant Sunday evening when my friends called me for playing and I accepted the call and went to play with them. As soon as I started riding on my bicycle a gigantic cricket, looking like a mini dinosaur, settled on my right arm. Struck with fear, I fell off my bike. I tried to get up but I couldn’t. To my shock I sensed something had gone wrong. Yes I saw a fracture in my right hand. My hand was bent and was hanging as if there was no bone inside. And the pain was horrible and unbearable. So I started crying for my parents.

Mr. Vijay, our neighbor, came down to rescue me. In the mean time I had crawled to the basement of my apartment. He comforted me saying nothing had gone wrong, it was just a small injury that could be fixed easily. I felt really comforted by the very touch of Vijay uncle. Then my parents came and took me to Dr. Kamatchi Memorial Hospital.

The doctor came immediately and I was taken to the operation theater. As I had taken milk before the incident had happened they couldn’t give me anesthesia. So I had to tolerate the pain until 10.30 pm. After anesthesia I couldn’t see what they were doing. When I came to consciousness all I could see was a pouch arm sling on my right hand, fortunately painless.

I had to be in the hospital for a day. It’s quite boring as I had nothing to do there. I returned home the next day. The worst thing was I had to be on medical leave for six weeks. In the mean time S A-1 exams began. I didn’t know how to prepare for the exam. But my best buddy, my grandma, came to save me from appearing for the exam unprepared. She guided me through my preparation and you won’t believe I scored high in all my subjects, much higher than I used to score in my previous exams. No wonder I cherish the memory of the day with the scary cricket.

Master Aashish Antony,
Grade IV, St. John’s Public School, Chennai

Activity-2: Describe a radio programme that you found interesting

Model Presentation

Last Friday while I was cooking dinner for my family I could listen to a radio program aired by All India Radio. It was hosted by School Children. Children provided us with a wealth of information, updated us on the latest developments in the country, shared breaking news and entertained us with popular rock songs. Well, I liked the program and enjoyed it very much because I could work in a relaxed mood listening to songs and news updates.

Ms. Jegatha

Activity-3: Describe an important event that you celebrated
Model Presentation

We celebrated my grandma’s birthday on January 15. It was important because she turned seventy five on that day, moreover, it was an occasion for all our family members to get together and chat for a long time after a long break. My grandma and grandpa are very healthy and look amazingly young. They have eight grand children and four great grand children, too.

Furthermore we wanted to celebrate the day in a grand manner. So we had invited all our neighbors and friends. As expected all the invitees attended the birthday celebration together. Apart from family, friends and neighbors my grandma's former students, colleagues and their children were with us the whole day.

The party was celebrated at our farm house, in fact, not far from our house. My parents and I went there around 8 a.m. I didn't know my grandparents were already there. So I was greatly surprised to see my grandma receiving the guests with a glass of farm fresh orange juice. Almost all the invitees came to greet my grandma with gifts of love.

At the stroke of ten my grandma came out with a birthday cake much to the surprise of all of us. It was a huge banana cake laced with homemade wine and topped with juicy mango slices. There were seventy five candles of different colors artfully arranged around the cake. Around 10.30 a.m. grandpa lit the candles and handed over an easily disposable birthday knife to my grandma. Excitedly grandma blew out the candles and cut the cake amid clapping and cheering. With a glow of joy grandpa received the first piece and shared it with grandma. Then the cake was sliced and distributed to the guests. All of us stood around and sang birthday songs.

Finally grandma thanked everyone and treated us to lunch at her garden restaurant.Wow! It was a delicious full course lunch. Everyone enjoyed every bit of the wholesome lunch and had a lot of fun singing, dancing, playing games and taking photos with grandma. The lunch, of course, was fragrant, spicy, juicy and sumptuous. Well, we cherish the memory of the great day every moment and we will for ever.

A. Sumitha
Bharathi, INCIDE Academy

Activity-4: Please read the sentences, answer the questions and prepare a dialogue and then practice reading it with a friend or your online facilitator.

• Ms. Charley was a great math teacher but a strict disciplinarian. She always taught mathematics with a look of grim determination to achieve results. Everybody enjoyed her classes but many didn’t like her strict rules.
• Her Students worked hard for long hours and no wonder they always scored high in exams.
• Ms. Charley bought a book entitled “Be a good finder” and presented it to her students as a New Year gift. All of them read it and understood they had long been fault finders.
• Last Friday Ms. Charley’s cab was caught in a traffic jam and so she had to wait on the road for over two hours. She was consequently unable to arrive at school in time and felt very sad.
• But the principal, being a good finder, said it was not her fault. Ms. Charley thanked the principal with a smile and left for the class.
• Her students received her cheerfully because they were unusually happy that day. Surprised as she was she asked them why they were so excited.
They said they had a happy break from formulas and theorems.


1. What kind of teacher was Ms. Charley?
2. Why did she always look grim?
3. Did all her students like her? Why? Why not?
4. Did her students score high in exams? If yes, how?
5. What was Ms. Charley’s New Year gift to her students?
6. Why did Ms. Charley arrive unusually late at school?
7. How did the principal receive her?
8. How did her students receive her? Why?

Formation of the Past Simple

Regular Verbs

Rules to follow…

1. Regular past simple forms are formed by adding -ed to the infinitive of the verb.

Accept accepted
Add added
Alert alerted
Avoid avoided
Bake baked
Boil boiled
Book booked
Brush brushed
Call called
Camp camped
Clean cleaned
Connect connected
Decorate decorated
Delay delayed
Develop developed
Disappear disappeared

2. If a verb ends in ‘ e’ we add ‘d’ to form the past simple.

Educate educated
Encourage encouraged
Examine examined
Excuse excused
Face Faced
Fade faded
Fence fenced
Force forced
Gaze gazed
Glue glued
Grease greased
Guide guided
Ignore ignored
Increase increased
Interfere interfered
Introduce introduced

3. If a verb ends in a vowel and a consonant, the consonant is usually doubled before –‘ed’.

Admit admitted
Ban banned
Bat batted
Chop chopped

4. If a verb ends in consonant and -y, we take off the y and add –‘ied’ to form the simple past.

Carry carried
Copy copied
Dry dried
Empty emptied

5. But if the word ends in a vowel and ‘y’, we add –‘ed’ to form the past simple.

Annoy annoyed
Destroy destroyed
Employ employed
Enjoy enjoyed

Irregular verbs

Some verbs are irregular. There are no rules to follow so we have to learn the words.


Present Past Simple Present Past Simple
Be(am, is,are) was, were - -
begin began break broke
bring brought build built
buy bought catch caught
choose chose come came
cost cost cut cut
do did draw drew
drink drank drive drove
eat ate fall fell
feel felt fight fought
find found fly flew
forget forgot freeze froze
get got give gave
go went have had
hear heard hold held
hit hit keep kept
know knew learn learnt
leave left lead led
let let lie lay
lose lost make made
mean meant meet met
pay paid put put
read read ride rode
run ran say said
see saw sell sold
send sent set set
shut shut sing sang
sit sat sleep slept
speak spoke spend spent
stand stood steal stole
swim swam take took
teach taught tell told
think thought understand understood
wake woke wear wore
win won write wrote

English Language Enrichment Activities

Activity- 1: Please read the model and then describe yours

My neighbourhood- model presentation

My name is Mary. I live at 44/A4, Golden Street , Nagercoil. I have lots of loving neighbours. They are friendly and helpful. I have four next-door neighbours – Nabila lives to my North, Kumasi to the South, Lakshmi to the west and Jegatha to the East.

Every morning I leave for work at 8 o’ clock, and I always work till 4 p.m. Back home my children, husband and I usually talk about kids’ classes, teachers, dinner and the weather.

At weekends we generally go for picnics, often to the nearest mountains, beaches, lakes or rivers. Kumasi lives opposite me at A 6-304. Whenever we go out he takes care of our cows and dog. When Kumasi and his family go away, I feed their goldfish and look after their cats and dogs.

Lakshmi lives at 44/ A2 . She has two small children and sometimes I babysit them for her when she works late. Nabila lives at number 44/ A1. She is quite nosey and likes to know everything about neighbours. She is a gossip columnist. Jegatha lives with her husband two blocks away.

They are quite old and don’t go out much. They love it when people drop in to see them and chat with them over a glass of juice. They often talk about the old days when they were school kids. They narrate stories about what our villages were like some fifty years ago, the incredibly varied landscape, rivers that filled lakes every monsoon, majestic mountains and the huts set in idyllic surroundings. Those sacraments of nature are lost but a friendly neighbourhood persists.

Activity-2: Please read the description of my home library and then answer the questions.

Our Home Library

My dear friends! You are welcome .We have an amazing home library.

In our family my grandparents, my parents, brothers, sisters,… everybody loves reading and so my parents have collected different kinds of books. We certainly feel great when in the company of our favorite authors.

We have children's encyclopedias, dictionaries, globes, novels, short stories, great works of Shakespeare and Milton, Thirukural and a good collection of modern poetry and bed time stories.

We have arranged our books in open shelves so it is easy to take our choice books and read them. As we have learned to use our time reading books we don't waste our time watching substandard movies and serials on TV. Thank you.

Home Library

Benefits of a home library

1. Children pick up books and start reading.
2. They cultivate the habit of reading.
3. Home libraries offer more chances of reading books of different kinds.
4. Family members can sit together and share knowledge.
5. Reading enhances the self confidence level of children.
6. Reading helps children score high in exams.
7. Children learn the habit of treasuring books and keeping them well organized.
8. A home library is a great source of healthy home entertainment, too.

1. Do you have a home library?
2. How often do you visit your home library?
3. What kind of books do you read most?
4. Who is your favorite author?

Activity-3: Please practice the dialogue with a friend and prepare a dialogue using the questions given below and your answers.

Our kitchen

A: Why is a kitchen an important room in a house?

B: Are you funny? Kitchen is not an important room. It is the most important room in a house because the most important thing, our food, is prepared here.

A: You are right. Do you like cooking?

B: Well, I like cooking and on special occasions like birth days, festivals and picnics. I cook along with my mom and dad.

A: Great! What are the utensils you have in your kitchen?

B: We have almost all the essential tools to cook the kind of food we generally eat. They are, cookers of different sizes, an oven with four burners, a grinder, a mixer, cups, glasses, a cutting board, a coffee maker, a 24 piece cutlery set, fruit bowls, frying pans, a fridge, a dish washer, an egg beater and some cooking vessels and plates. Sorry we have garbage bags and two garbage cans, too.

A: Wow! How do you dispose of garbage?

B: We don’t throw anything out. We segregate the garbage generated at home. We have two compost bins in our garden where we put all the biodegradable waste to make compost for our garden. And the non biodegradable waste is kept in bags and handed over to the garbage pickers.

A: What do the garbage pickers do with the non biodegradable waste?

B: They send it to the local recycling plant.

A: You are doing a great national service. Thank you. Good bye.

B: Nice talking to you, bye.

Prepare a dialogue using the questions and your answers and then practice it with a friend.

When’s your breakfast?
Where do you generally have your breakfast?
What’s your favorite breakfast?
Who prepares food at home?
What do you generally talk about while having your breakfast?
How do you dispose of garbage generated at home?
What are the different methods of waste disposal followed in your home town?

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