English is a global language, used to communicate across every aspect of life, including businesses, science and information technology, media and entertainment, and also our personal spaces. Good knowledge of grammar, vocabulary, and punctuation is necessary to communicate fluently in the English language.

The foundation for good language skills, both micro as well as macro, is laid in our formative years in school.

When we learn a language, there are four primary skills that we need to master. First, we learn to listen. This is followed by the development of speaking skills. Reading and writing follow naturally. These four language skills are collectively referred to as the macro-skills, in contrast to the micro-skills such as grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation.

English language skills encompass both macro as well as micro-level skills, including grammar, vocabulary, reading, writing, speaking, etc. | Source: Visual Hunt

CBSE Class 10 Syllabus for English

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) will conduct the Class X English Communicative and English Language & Literature exam on February 26, 2020. Preparation for one of the most important competitive exams in India starts at the beginning of the academic year itself when we get to know the CBSE exam syllabus for English, receive our English textbooks, chapter list, course structure.

Benefits of Knowing the English Education Syllabus

Students in CBSE schools or a Kendriya Vidyalaya can benefit from the knowledge of the complete syllabus for the following reasons:

  • Preparatory content for each section
  • Division of marks in each section
  • Prescribed books
  • Components of Internal Assessment
  • Textbook course
  • Question paper design for the annual board examination

Grammar and Composition Syllabus

  • Tenses
  • Modals
  • Use of passive voice
  • Subject-verb concord
  • Reporting
    • Commands and requests
    • Statements
    • Questions
  • Clauses:
    • Noun clauses
    • Adverb clauses of condition and time
    • Relative clauses
  • Determiners
  • Prepositions
  • Unseen passages
  • Letter writing
  • Article writing
  • Story writing
  • Gap filling
  • Editing
  • Omission
  • Sentence reordering
  • Sentence transformation

CBSE Marking Scheme

CBSE Class 10 English exam is assessed for a total of 100 marks, divided into two parts - 80 marks for annual theory exam and 20 marks for internal assessment.

The internal assessments are conducted on the basis of the following activities:

  • Periodic tests (10 marks)
  • Assessment of listening and speaking skills (5 marks)
  • Subject Enrichment Activities like role-playing, skit, dramatization, etc. (5 marks)
Reading books
Extensive reading practice, not only of the prescribed textbooks but also other materials, is a great source of enriching your English language skills | Source: Sincerely Media on Unsplash

Structure of the Question Paper

The question paper in the CBSE board exam for English is divided into three sections - A (Reading), B (Writing and Grammar), and C (Literature). Students are advised to punctuate their exam preparation with regular practice with sample papers, modeled on the CBSE pattern

Section B: Writing and Grammar  (30 Marks)     

  • Question number 3 has an internal choice between a question on formal letter writing and a question on article writing. (8 marks)
  • Question number 4 includes story writing based on a given outline or by taking a cue from the given picture. (10 marks)
  • Question number 5 has gap-filling by choosing correct words to form the given options. (4 marks)
  • Question number 6 involves editing or omission to present the given sentence in the correct form. (4 marks)
  • Question number 7 includes rearranging of a given set of words to form meaningful sentences. (4 marks)

English Class 10 NCERT Solutions and Sample Papers

Students must practice with the NCERT (National Council of Educational Research and Training) English Class 10 solutions in order to strengthen their command over the English language.

English grammar can become a high-scoring area for students.

Several student resources, including study plans, revision notes, sample papers, are available as free PDF on many online portals. Download them and start practicing the following topics, based on the CBSE syllabus:

  • Determiner
  • Tenses
  • Subject-verb agreement
  • Non-finite
  • Relatives
  • Connectors
  • Conditionals
  • Comparisons
  • Avoiding repetition
  • Nominalization
  • Modals- expressing attitudes
  • Active and passive voice
  • Reported speech
  • Prepositions
  • Integrated grammar practice
  • Unseen passages
  • Letter writing
  • Article writing
  • Story writing
  • Gap filling
  • Editing
  • Omission
  • Sentence reordering
  • Sentence transformation

Preparing for Each Section Individually

It is a great idea to have separate study and revision plans for each section of the English syllabus. You can use the following methodologies as useful ways to improve your chances of scoring high marks in the English paper:

Reading Section

  • Practice 3-4 passages daily to score better in the reading comprehension questions based on the unseen passage.
  • Work on your reading skills.
  • Build good vocabulary.

Writing and Grammar

English Literature 

  • Refer to the English literature books prescribed in CBSE Syllabus.
  • Recall the summaries of all poems and stories and memorize their authors.
  • Practice questions from previous years' question papers.
Color coded revision notes

Follow the Order of the Exam Paper

The sample paper you practiced with has got you covered in this regard. In the English paper for the Board exams, it is advisable to answer the exam questions in the following order:

  1. Section A: Start with this Reading section as it can be the most time-consuming, requiring a careful read on your part.
  2. Section B: This is also a time-consuming one as the answers depend on how accurately you interpret the rules you have learned.
  3. Section C: You have prepared for this section all throughout your coursework in English language and literature. The answers are familiar to you. Therefore, it will likely cost you the least amount of time.

Adopting Separate Techniques 

While going through English revisions for the Board exams, based on your school education, what your English books say and how the sample question has been framed, you will be able to curate specific techniques of answering questions for each of the three sections in the actual examination papers. Here are a few tips on how to go about this exercise:

Section A Techniques

  • Read the questions first. Keeping them in mind, read the passage carefully.
  • Write short and crisp answers for better readability.
  • Recall your vocabulary to answer the antonym and synonym type of questions.

 Section B Techniques

  • Remember the correct formats for letter and article writing.
  • Maintain accuracy of grammar rules and relevancy of ideas.
  • Maintain a logical sequence of the ideas, characters, and events presented in your story.
  • Make sure you have an appropriate conclusion.
  • For the objective type questions based on sentence development and grammatical skills, read the words and phrases carefully to understand the meaning.

Section C Techniques

  • Remember the names of chapters with their respective authors and themes.
  • Formulate your answers based on your own inference and interpretation.
  • The use of appropriate vocabulary, based on the context.
  • Stick to the stipulated word limit.
  • Make sure your answers are grammatically correct and free of any spelling errors.

It's never too late to turn to the expert for help. These great courses in English are just what you need on the eve of your exams.

Manage Your Time Well 

Time management is of the essence if you want to finish writing your paper and spare some time for revision as well. Calculate how much time you would ideally need to finish each section. Your time commitment exercise during the days of revision should help you with this. Ideal time segregation could look something like the following:

  • Section A - 50 minutes
  • Section B - 60 minutes
  • Section C - 50 minutes
  • Revision - 20 minutes

Remember: Make sure you have covered the entire syllabus of Class 10 English while revising before the exam. Go through the different sections of your NCERT books thoroughly and accordingly assess your level of preparedness.

Prepare for your exam with an English speaking course.

Timed mock tests
Improve your time-management skills with regular writing practice and mock tests | Source: Aron Visuals on Unsplash

In Conclusion...

Without regular practice and revision, your chances of scoring well in the English exam come down significantly. Just like you would solve previous years' question papers and sample papers for all subjects, like Hindi or World History, Physics, Environmental Studies or Business Studies, do it for English as well.

The English language enjoys exceeding patronage in Indian society, like once Sanskrit did in the Vedic times or Urdu did in the Mughal court, respectively. The language skills you pick up in Class 10 will stay with you forever, whether you go on to become a university student pursuing higher education in English Literature or the Social Sciences or even apply for the civil service Be sure to make them count!

Check for an English speaking course online.

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Shreyanjana is an archaeologist who ironically finds the written word to be the most powerful means of storytelling. A travel buff and a photography enthusiast, she has been writing and sharing stories of all sorts ever since she can remember.