Monday, 28 November 2011


There are 3 types of settings in this novel :-
Place, Social, Cultural


House in London
The cottage in the country side
The railway station
The railway tunnel
The village


Edwardian Type of Clothes
Coal used for steam engine trains 


Having tea
High hats and long coats

Other Related Posts :-

Novel Moral Values

*Source :- CDD - Ministry of Education (2011)
*Acknowledgement :- These teaching modules were developed and compiled with the help of a group of dedicated teachers from various schools all over the country. 


Roberta(Bobbie), Peter and Phyllis lived in a comfortable home in London. Their father was a civil servant while their mother was a housewife.Their parents were wonderful and kind people. They also had a maid to do the house work.

One day, two gentlemen came to the house to see their father. Soon after, he followed them out.He was taken to prison. He was accused of being a Russian spy. The children did not know why their father left with the two men but their mother knew. She kept it to herself and did not tell the children.

Soon, they had to move to a modest cottage in the Yorkshire countryside. The cottage was situated near a railway station. The children's life revolved around the passing trains, workers at the station and the towns people.

Their mother wrote some stories to earn some money to buy food and for other necessities. It was hard at first to be poor but they soon learned to live with the little they had.

They learned not to steal coal from the railway station even if they have so little coal to keep warm. Their life was full of adventures. For instance, they managed to stop a train when a landslide covered the tracks. They found the injured boy (hound) in the train tunnel and managed to get help for him.

They liked to wave at passing trains. In time they made many new friends and forged a special friendship with one old gentleman in particular. The old gentleman gets to know them and helps them in various ways.

He becomes instrumental in the release of their father from prison.Finally, one day their father returns home and everybody is happy that now they are together again.

Other Related Posts :-

Novel Theme
Novel Characters
Novel Settings

Novel Moral Values

Monday, 14 November 2011


To write a cool attention grabbing narrative essay needs the right spices, just like cooking a curry masala. The first thing about writing narrative essay is creative imagination. You need to be creative and different. Think out of the box and let loose your imagination. See it through like a movie plot before you write down on your paper.

Read The Question Carefully

In SPM public examination, the question for narrative type of essay either starts with " Write a story beginning with: " or " Write a story ending with: ". In the year 2010 it was "Beginning", so there is a big chance this year 2011 it would be "Ending".

For example, if the question says "Write a story beginning with: It had been raining all day", then you start your essay with the given phrase.The same goes for question which has "Ending with", you write the phrase at the ending of your essay. I prefer the "Beginning" type because it gives you more freedom to create your plot.

Draft Your Plot

For narrative essay use the [PLOT] technique instead of using the [Intro-Body-Conclusion] technique. Draft your plot carefully. Put in some twists and turns in your story. Have an element of surprise. Keep your readers glued to their seat. Build your story scene by scene like in a movie. Give a big impact in your climax scene and let the audience make the conclusion....that would surely cause them to have some sleepless nights itching to know the end......(surprise--surprise)

Literary Devices

Use Adjectives, Adverbs, Verbs, Idioms, Contrast, Flashback, Imagery etc to tell your story. This technique will help readers to have a vivid picture in their mind. Every character or scene you tell can come alive to the readers and help them flow along with the story.

Grammar And Punctuation

Take care of your grammar, make sure to use the correct English Grammar when writing your essay. A strong grammar will help you to relate your story to your readers. Readers need to know what you are telling them. This is only impossible if you are able to use proper grammar and punctuation. Use your tenses properly when dealing with story telling. A story can start in the PRESENT TENSE flashback into the PAST TENSE and zoom into the FUTURE TENSE. There are also the PRESENT PERFECT AND PAST PERFECT tenses which you might need to use.

Creativity And Imagination

Be creative and arrange your story line carefully. Imagine that you are a director directing a movie. As a director you have a responsibilty to make sure your movie is a Box Office Hit. The same goes with your story, make sure it is one of a kind story, totally different from the rest of your friends essays. Sorry to say this but most of the essays are stale and does not have the extra edge which screams for attention.


You can use the 7P Essay Structure Tehnique to write a story.

  1. First Paragraph - Exposition (Beginning of your story) - 40-50 words
  2. Second,Third and Forth Paragraph - Events - 40-50 words
  3. Fifth Paragraph - Climax - 40-50 words
  4. Sixth Paragraph - Anti-Climax - 40-50 words
  5. Seventh Paragraph - Ending - 40-50 words


* Focus on one event / incident for every paragraph
* Don't write two or three events / incidences in one paragraph
* Try not to use the phrase "In conclusion" when you end your story.
* Make sure your Essay is more than 350 words, roughly 350-400 words
* Marks will be deducted if your essay is less than 350 words.

*Narrative - Beginning
*Narrative - Ending
*Narrative - Tips (1)

Sunday, 13 November 2011


Narrative essay involves story telling. You are actually telling a story in words. Telling a story by mouth is easy but telling it in a written form is totally a different story alltogether. In order to write a good narrative essay there are few things you need to know.So, in this post I have listed out some pointers for you on how you can write a better narrative essay for your school and public examinations.

We will use the 1+1=2 method. "1+1=2" MEANS "creative imagination + lietarary Devices = Originality". This is my own cooked up class room formula to help my weak and not so weak students to use their mind creatively. [ If by chance, anybody else out there is using the same method then please excuse me...for this is trully my own cooked up home recipe].

What You Need......

  1. Creative and an imaginative mind. You need to be bold to tell your story in the utmost creative and imaginative manner. Don't worry if people think that it's way too weird or it doesn't make sense. Just let your creative juice flow freely from your mind to your writing pad. Experiment and keep on experimenting until you find the right rhythm or your own style of writing.
  2. Literary Devices. Use literary devices to give to your story.Literary devices have the capability to give depth to your charactes and your story. It can make the readers see,feel,smell,touch and taste your story. Therefore, learning how to use them effectively in your essay will give you an added advantage.
  3. Story Plot. You need a plot to tell your story.So, draft your plot first before you write your essay. A plot starts with - [ Exposition - Conflict - Climax - Anti-Climax - Resolution ].
There you have it, simple and yet effective method to write a good narrative essay for your public examinations.Let me guess, your next question will be, "How to write it....?" right? I will tell you on my my next post when time permits...ALL THE BEST IN YOUR EXAMS!

Monday, 7 November 2011


Why I can't write good English Essay for my PMR or SPM or any kind of English Essay writing exams? This is a very famous question asked by many local and foreign students, especially those who take English as their Second Language Studies.Be at peace, nobody is a born writer. You need to put a lot of hard work and time if you want to be a good writer.

Do you want to know how you can improve your English Essay Writing? In this post, I would like to share some of the methods I teach my students on how to improve their essay writing.The methods mentioned below are age old methods which are being used around the world by many teachers.

Pointer 1- Read some good English Novels 
Read as many books as you can. Read some good English novels. Observe how the writer uses different techniques and styles to tell the story. Good novel writers usually like to use simple and straightforward language. They also like to use a variety of literary devices to make their novel come to life. 

Pointer 2- Read Newspaper Articles
Read newspaper articles in your local English Dailies. For students sitting for SPM, read articles or news on family issues, health, accidents, sports, teenagers etc. Reading these articles can help to improve your vocabulary list and your grammar.You can read articles from the 'STAR' newspaper ( for weak students ) or from the 'News Straits Time' ( for those who have a good command of English).
Pointer 3- Read Articles From Magazines
Read good English Magazines like the Newsweek, Times ,Readers Digest etc. This method I would only recommend to those who have a good command of English. Articles from the Readers Digest have been used in SPM examinations before.

Pointer 4- Copy Back Sample Essays

Find some short essay samples and copy them into a work book. Read slowly as you copy them. This method is very helpful for those who are weak in writing a simple English essay.
Pointer 5- Group Discussion
Form a group and discuss and exchange ideas on how you can write a good essay. It would be helpful if you can find an English teacher or your friend who is good in English to help with your writing. 

Pointer 6- Don't Memorize Essays For Exam

This is my secret to being a good writer. Never memorize an essay for your examaminations. Many students like to cram their head memorizing few essays for their PMR or SPM examinations and just simply write without giving thought to what is actually required. This method will not help you in the long run when later you are in the real world. In the real world you'll have problems to write even a simple letter if you keep on with this method.

The best way to write an essay is through the 5 methods which I have mentioned above and a lot of hard work goes with it.

Remember, you can't be a good writer in a day. You need to start from young to be able to write a good English Essay. It is never to late to start even if you are only in Form 4 or Form 5. Perseverance and hardwork will always bear fruit. It is better to get a 'CREDIT' for your own essay rather than getting a 'DISTINCTION' memorizing someone else's essay.