Monday, June 17, 2024

Unit -II

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NCERT Solutions for Class 8 English Chapter 2

The Tsunami

The chapter focuses on the devastating tsunami that struck the Indian Ocean in 2004, particularly highlighting the impact on coastal communities.

Narratives: The story unfolds through three interwoven narratives:

  1. Ignesious (Andaman and Nicobar Islands):
    • Ignesious, a manager, is working when the first tremors hit. Confusion reigns as the initial tremors don’t seem like a major threat.
    • The suddenness of the tsunami’s arrival catches everyone off guard. Ignesious gets separated from his family in the chaos, highlighting the loss and disorientation caused by the disaster.
    • The narrative emphasizes the powerlessness people feel in the face of such a massive natural force.
  2. Meena (Thailand):
    • Meena, a young girl on the Thai coast, notices unusual animal behavior before the tsunami strikes. Elephants move inland, and dogs bark frantically.
    • This portrayal suggests that animals might possess an instinctive ability to sense impending danger, potentially serving as a natural early warning system.
    • Meena’s fear and the unsettling animal behavior create a sense of foreboding before the disaster unfolds.
  3. Almas (India) & Meena (Thailand) – Shared Experience of Survival:
    • Both Almas, a girl from India, and Meena from Thailand find themselves swept away by the powerful waves.
    • Their stories showcase the terrifying experience of being caught in the tsunami’s fury.
    • Despite the trauma, both girls manage to survive. Almas clings to a tree branch, and Meena finds refuge in a deserted hut.
    • These narratives emphasize the resilience of the human spirit in the face of overwhelming odds.

Comprehension Check

1. Say whether the following are true or false.

  1. Ignesious lost his wife, two children, his father-in-law, and his brother-in-law in the tsunami.
  2. Sanjeev made it to safety after the tsunami.
  3. Meghna was saved by a relief helicopter.
  4. Almas’s father realised that a tsunami was going to hit the island.
  5. Her mother and aunts were washed away with the tree that they were holding on to.

Ans : 

  1. True: Ignesious lost his wife, two children, his father-in-law, and his brother-in-law in the tsunami.
  2. True: Sanjeev made it to safety after the tsunami.
  3. False: The text doesn’t mention Meghna. It focuses on Almas and Meena.
  4. False: The text doesn’t specify if Almas’s father realized the tsunami was coming.
  5. False: The text doesn’t mention Almas’s mother or aunts. It only says Almas clung to a tree branch and survived.

2. Answer the following in a phrase or sentence.

  1. Why did Tilly’s family come to Thailand?
  2. What were the warning signs that both Tilly and her mother saw?
  3. Do you think Tilly’s mother was alarmed by them?
  4. Where had Tilly seen the sea behaving in the same strange fashion?
  5. Where did the Smith family and the others on the beach go to escape; from the tsunami?
  6. How do you think her geography teacher felt when he heard about what Tilly had done in Phuket?

Ans : 

  1. Tilly’s family was in Thailand to celebrate Christmas.”
  2. The sea surged upward, frothing and churning into whirlpools before their very eyes.
  3. Tilly pointed out the oddity, but her mother didn’t show any alarm.
  4. In a video, Tilly had witnessed the sea behaving in a strange way.
  5. Seeking refuge, they rushed to the third floor of the hotel, which ultimately saved them.
  6. She beamed with satisfaction.

Comprehension Check 

1. Answer using a phrase or a sentence.

  1. In the Tsunami 150,000 people died. How many animals died?
  2. How many people and animals died in Yala National Park?
  3. What do people say about the elephants of Yala National Park?
  4. What did the dogs in Galle do?

Ans : 

  1. The exact number of animal deaths in the tsunami is unknown.Few animals died.
  2. In Yala National Park during the tsunami, reports indicate that around 60 visitors died, while there are no documented deaths of animals except for two water buffaloes.
  3. People say that the elephants of Yala National Park have a remarkable ability to sense natural disasters, particularly tsunamis.
  4. Uncharacteristically, the dogs in Galle resisted their usual beach walks.

Working With the Text

1.When he felt the earthquake, do you think Ignesious immediately worried about a Tsunami? Give reasons for your answer. Which sentence in the text tells you that the Ignesious family did not have any time to discuss and plan their course of action after the tsunami struck?

Ans : Ignorant of the coming tsunami, Ignesious reacted to the earthquake by securing his TV. The suddenness of the disaster left his family with no time to plan, as evidenced by the chaos and children running in different directions.

2. Which words in the list below describe Sanjeev, in your opinion?

Cheerful , ambitious , brash , brave , careless , heroic , selfless , heartless , humorous

Ans : Brave , Ambitious

Use words from the list to complete the three sentences below.

  1. I don’t know if Sanjeev was cheerful, ………………. or……………….
  2. I think that he was very brave, ……………….. and……………….
  3. Sanjeev was not heartless, ……………….. or……………….

Ans : 

  1. ambitious or brash.
  2. heroic and selfless.
  3. careless or humorous.

3. How are Meghna and Almas’s stories similar?

Ans : Meghna and Alma’s stories share a few key similarities:

  • Loss and Survival: Both girls are survivors of a devastating event, likely a tsunami. They tragically lost their families in the disaster.
  • Adrift at Sea: Following the disaster, both Meghna and Alma find themselves alone at sea, clinging to debris for survival.
  • Trauma: The ordeal leaves them deeply traumatized. Meghna walks the seashore in a daze, while Alma withdraws and doesn’t speak about the experience.

4. What are the different ways in which Tilly’s parents could have reacted to her behaviour? What would you have done if you were in their place?

Ans : Tilly’s parents’ reaction to her behavior could vary depending on their personalities and the severity of the situation. Here are some possibilities:

  • Dismissal: They might dismiss her warnings, assuming she’s being childish or overreacting. This could be disastrous if the danger is real.
  • Calming Down: They might try to calm her down first, thinking she’s scared of something harmless. However, this could also delay taking necessary action.
  • Immediate Action: They could take her warnings seriously and take immediate action to investigate the danger and evacuate if necessary. This would be the ideal response if there’s a genuine threat.

If I were in their place:

  • Listen Carefully: First, I would listen attentively to Tilly, trying to understand the nature of the danger she perceives.
  • Assess the Situation: I would then assess the situation myself. Is there anything in the environment that suggests a threat?
  • Err on the Side of Caution: If I’m unsure or there’s even a slight possibility of danger, I would err on the side of caution and take steps to ensure everyone’s safety. This might involve moving away from the potential threat or evacuating the area altogether.
  • Communicate & Explain: If the danger turns out to be unfounded, I would explain my thought process to Tilly in a reassuring way, so she understands why I reacted the way I did.

5. If Tilly’s award was to be shared, who do you think she should share it with— her parents or her geography teacher?

Ans : Tilly should consider sharing the award with her geography teacher. Here’s why:

  • Knowledge The teacher’s knowledge about tsunamis equipped Tilly to recognize the danger and take action.

6. What are the two different ideas about why so few animals were killed in the tsunami? Which idea do you find more believable?

Ans : There are two main ideas about why fewer animals than humans might die in tsunamis:

  1. Sixth Sense: This idea suggests animals have a premonition of natural disasters.
  2. Acute Senses: This theory proposes animals’ sharper hearing or ability to feel ground vibrations allows them to detect the tsunami before humans.

While the “sixth sense” is intriguing, it lacks scientific backing. The more likely explanation is the superior senses theory. Animals can hear lower frequencies and feel subtle ground tremors that humans miss. This early warning allows them to flee to higher ground before the tsunami hits.

Working With Language

1. Go through Part-I carefully, and make a list of as many words as you can find that indicate movement of different kinds. (There is one word that occurs repeatedly-count how many times!). Put them into three categories.

fast movement slow movement neither slow nor fast Can you explain why there are many words in one column and not in the others?

Ans : 

Fast Movement : 



Swept away

Washed away

Slow Movement : 



Neither Slow nor Fast : 


The passage emphasizes frantic movement as the tsunami strikes. People and animals alike scrambled to escape, but the waves’ relentless speed tragically swept some away.

Fill in the blanks in the sentences below (the verbs given in brackets will give you a clue).

  1. The earth trembled, but not many people felt the………………………… (tremble)
  2. When the zoo was flooded, there was a lot of……………………. and many animals es­caped into the countryside, (confuse)
  3. We heard with………………. that the lion had been recaptured, (relieve)
  4. The zookeeper was stuck in a tree and his ……………………… was filmed by the TV crew, (rescue)
  5. There was much……………….. in the village when the snake charmer came visit­ing. (excite)

Ans : 

  1. Trembling
  2. Confusion
  3. Relief
  4. Rescue
  5. Excitement

3. Say whether the following sentences are in the Active or the Passive voice. Write A or P after each sentence as shown in the first sentence.

(i) Someone stole my bicycle.  A
(ii) The tyres were deflated by the traffic police. ____________
(iii) I found it last night in a ditch near my house. _____________
(iv) It had been thrown there. ________
(v) My father gave it to the mechanic. __________
(vi) The mechanic repaired it for me. ___________

Ans : 

(i) A

(ii) P
(iii) A
(iv) P
(v) A
(vi) A

Speaking and Writing

Suppose you are one of the volunteers who went to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands for relief work after the tsunami. You work in the relief camps, distributing food, water and medicine among the victims. You listen to the various stories of bravery of ordinary people even as they fight against odds to bring about some semblance of normalcy in their lives. You admire their grit and determination. Write a diary entry.

You may start in this way.

31 December, 2004

The killer tsunami struck these islands five days ago. But the victims are being brought in even now. Each one has a story to tell….

Ans : 

December 31, 2004

The killer tsunami struck these islands five days ago. But the victims are being brought in even now, faces etched with a mixture of shock and grief. Each one has a story to tell, a tale of loss and, in some cases, incredible resilience.

Today, I met Rani, a young woman who clung to a coconut tree for hours as the wave surged around her. She lost her entire family, yet spoke with a quiet dignity that left me speechless. Then there was Kumar, a fisherman who used his small boat to ferry people to safety after the wave receded. Despite his own losses, he risked his life to save others.

The devastation is overwhelming. Homes are reduced to rubble, boats lie scattered like broken toys. Yet, amidst the wreckage, there’s a flicker of hope. People are coming together, sharing what little they have. Children play, their laughter a balm on the wounded spirits.

We, the volunteers, work tirelessly. Distributing food, water, and medicine is just a part of it. We offer a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, a hand to help rebuild. It’s exhausting, both physically and emotionally, but the strength of the survivors is an inspiration.

Tonight, as I lie under the star-studded sky, the silence is broken by the rhythmic sound of the waves. It’s a constant reminder of the tragedy, but also a symbol of the islands’ enduring spirit. Just like the ocean recedes after a storm, I know these beautiful islands will rise again. And we’ll be here, shoulder-to-shoulder with the survivors, every step of the way.

2. The story shows how a little girl saved the lives of many tourists when a tsunami struck the beach, thanks to the geography lesson that she had learnt at school. She remembered the visuals of a tsunami and warned her parents.

Do you remember any incident when something that you learnt in the classroom helped you in some way outside the classroom?

Write your experiences in a paragraph of about 90-100 words or narrate it to the whole class like an anecdote.

Ans : One day in science class, we were learning about CPR. The teacher emphasized the importance of checking for a pulse and performing chest compressions. A few weeks later, I was at the beach with my family when I saw an elderly man lying facedown in the sand, unconscious. Remembering the lesson, I rushed over, checked for a pulse (there wasn’t one!), and yelled for help. Thankfully, a nearby lifeguard saw the commotion and took over, performing CPR until the ambulance arrived. It was a scary situation, but I’m so grateful I learned CPR in school. It might have saved that man’s life!

Geography Lesson

The poem “Geography Lesson” by Zulfikar Ghose is a single stanza packed with observations that lead to a thought-provoking question. Here’s a detailed breakdown:

The View from Above:

  • The poem opens with the speaker on a plane, initially describing the view below as “unplanned” and lacking “style.” This suggests a sense of disarray from ground level.
  • As the plane ascends, the speaker observes a shift: cities naturally cluster near rivers, revealing a clear connection to a vital resource – water. This newfound understanding highlights the logic behind geographical patterns.
  • The speaker confirms what he has likely learned in school – the Earth is round and mostly covered in water. Seeing this firsthand reinforces geographical knowledge.

Understanding vs. Reality:

  • Despite gaining a deeper understanding of geography, the speaker is struck by a question that throws him off balance: “Why do men draw lines, / Quarrel over inches of ground?”
  • This question introduces the core conflict of the poem. Even with a newfound appreciation for the Earth’s order and the logic of geography, the speaker can’t reconcile it with the human tendency to fight and divide themselves.

The Unresolved Question:

  • The poem ends with this question hanging, unanswered. The speaker doesn’t offer an explanation for human conflict, instead choosing to highlight the stark contrast between the natural order of geography and the chaos of human behavior.
  • The lack of an answer emphasizes the complexity of the issue.

The poem essentially uses geography as a metaphor for a world that could be unified and harmonious. Yet, the speaker witnesses the opposite – a world marred by human conflict and division. This unresolved question is what makes the poem so thought-provoking. It lingers, prompting readers to consider the disconnect between our understanding of the world and our actions within it.

Working With Poem

1. Find three or four phrases in stanzas one and two which are likely to occur in a geography lesson.

Ans : 

  1. “cities where the rivers ran”: This directly relates to the concept of settlements developing near water sources for survival and transportation.
  2. “the earth is round, and it has more sea than land”: This is a fundamental fact about the Earth’s shape and composition, commonly taught in introductory geography classes.
  3. “scaled six inches to the mile”: While not as common today with digital maps, this phrase refers to the scale used on traditional paper maps, indicating the relationship between the map’s distance and the actual distance on Earth.

2. Seen from the window of an aeroplane, the city appears

(i) as haphazard as on ground.
(ii) as neat as a map.
(iii) as developed as necessary.
Mark the right answer.

Ans : (i) as haphazard as on ground.

3. Which of the following statements are examples of “the logic of geography”?

(i) There are cities where there are rivers.
(ii) Cities appear as they are not from six miles above the ground.
(iii) It is easy to understand why valleys are populated.
(iv) It is difficult to understand why humans hate and kill one another.
(v) The earth is round, and it has more sea than land.

Ans : 

  • (i) There are cities where there are rivers. This highlights the logical connection between settlements and access to water, a vital resource.
  • (iii) It is easy to understand why valleys are populated. Valleys often offer fertile land and protection from harsh elements, making them prime locations for settlements.
  • (v) The earth is round, and it has more sea than land. This describes the physical characteristics of the planet, which geographers study and understand.

4. Mention two things that are

(i) clear from the height.
(ii) not clear from the height.

Ans :

(i) Clear from the height:

  1. The Earth’s Shape: From a high altitude, the speaker can see the Earth’s curvature, confirming its roundness.
  2. Geographical Patterns: The speaker observes a pattern of cities developing near rivers, illustrating the logic of geography based on resource distribution.

(ii) Not clear from the height:

  1. Human Conflict: The poem highlights the speaker’s inability to understand why humans create divisions and fight from a high vantage point. Physical boundaries and reasons for conflict are not evident.
  2. Individual Lives: The lives and stories of the people below are not discernible from such a high altitude.


What does the poem “Geography Lesson” in Class 8 English Chapter 2 talk about?

“Geography Lesson” by Zulfikar Ghose describes the poet’s reflections on human civilization as seen from an airplane. The poem explores how geographical features influence the way cities and human settlements develop and offers a perspective on the human impact on nature.

What are some key points covered in “The Tsunami”?

Key points in “The Tsunami” include personal accounts of survivors, the impact of the tsunami on various communities, the immediate response to the disaster, and the lessons learned about preparedness and resilience.

What lesson does “Geography Lesson” convey?

“Geography Lesson” conveys the idea that human settlements are shaped by natural features like rivers and mountains, and it reflects on how human actions can sometimes contradict the natural harmony of the Earth. It encourages readers to think about the relationship between humans and their environment.

How does “Geography Lesson” relate to real-world geographical concepts?

“Geography Lesson” relates to real-world geographical concepts by illustrating how natural features like rivers and valleys influence the location and development of cities. It also touches on the environmental impact of human activities.

Who are the main characters in “The Tsunami”?

The main characters in “The Tsunami” include various individuals and families who experienced the tsunami. Their stories of survival, loss, and recovery are central to understanding the human impact of the disaster.

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