The word ‘Comprehension’ is a noun. It is derived from the verb “comprehend”, which means ‘to understand’. For understanding a passage, one should know the meaning of words, which means a good ‘vocabulary’ or word- list.
Questions on ‘Comprehension’, which is also known as an ‘Unseen’ exercise, can only be answered by someone, who grasps the meaning of the passage, as well as the purpose of the questions in the exercises. It can be attempted by the students who receive the training and anyone who can pick up by regular practice.
1. Read the passage thoroughly. Do not hesitate to consult a dictionary.
2. Read the questions and try to follow what is asked.
3. Read a second, third, or even fourth time and try to mark the parts from the passage which can be used to answer the questions.
4. Reading will help in writing the answers at the end. When sure of the answers, write them down one by one. Use your own words in your sentences.
5. Do not try to copy down parts of sentences from the passage. Your answers should be short, clear and to the point.
6. Give a suitable title to the passage, if asked for.
1. When you are asked to give a title to the passage, try to find it out. It would be around the important incident, or the main character which has been discussed in the passage. If there is no incident, theme, or character, tries to give a ‘proverb’ or ‘saying’, explaining the central idea.
2. Sometimes, it is possible to find out a sentence which seems to be the main, or the first sentence of the passage. This is known as the ‘Topic Sentence.’ One can reduce this sentence to a few words or suitable phrase to supply the title.
3. If the question is asked— “What is the passage about?” and you get an answer, the same can be cut to size to form the title. This is the surest and the easiest way to find the title.
4. A good heading is brief, clear and to the point. It is beautiful and impressive. It should cover all the points of the passage. There should be no verb in the title, to make it short. All words in the title, except the articles, prepositions and conjunctions should start with capital letters.
There was a cruel man. He had an ass. He was in the habit of overloading the poor ass. He used to put heavy loads upon his back. Beneath these loads the ass could hardly move, where upon the ass was beaten. One day, the man loaded the ass with heavy bags. The bags contained salt. The weight of these bags was unbearable.
The ass’s back and legs bent beneath the burden. The ass tried to carry this heavy load. His pace was slow. The master grew angry. The ass was then crossing a bridge. The master rained blows upon him. The ass attempted to run. He rolled over the edge into the water. In a short time the load of salt was spoiled. It dissolved in the water.
Read the above paragraph and answer the following questions:
1. Why could the ass not move?
2. What did the bags contain?
3. What happened after the ass had rolled over the bridge?
4. Write a few sentences on “The cruelty of the man.”
5. Explain the parts in italics.
6. Give the paragraph a suitable heading.
1. The ass could not move because it was made to carry a heavy load.
2. The bags contained salt.
3. The ass fell into the river. The load of salt got dissolved in water.
4. The man was cruel, no doubt. He knew his ass was weak and still he loaded it heavily. One day, he loaded the ass with salt and the animal could not walk. He beat it furiously. It was beyond doubt, very cruel on his part.
5. He was in the habit of overloading the poor ass. He used to put heavy loads on the ass’s back. The poor ass was not strong enough for those loads. His pace was slow. He could not go fast. The master rained blows upon him. The master beat him hard.
6. The suitable heading is ‘The Cruel Master.’