CBSE Board English Core Sample Papers for Class 10

Class X 

MM: 80    Time 3 hrs.
The Question paper is divided into four sections:
Section A : Reading 20 Marks
Section B : Writing 20 Marks
Section C : Grammar 20 Marks
Section D : Literature 20 Marks
General Instructions
1. All questions are compulsory
2. You may attempt any section at a time
3. All questions of that particular section must be attempted in the correct order
1. Read the poem given below and answer the questions:    5 Marks

Subramania Bharati
Wind, come softly.
Don't break the shutters of the windows.
Don't scatter the papers.
Don't throw down the books on the shelf.
There, look what you did - you threw them all down.
You tore the pages of the books.
You brought rain again.7
You're very clever at poking fun at weaklings.
Frail crumbling houses, crumbling doors, crumbling rafters,
crumbling wood, crumbling bodies, crumbling lives,
crumbling hearts -
the wind god winnows and crushes them all.
He won't do what you tell him.
So, come, let's build strong homes,
Let's join the doors firmly.
Practise to firm the body.
Make the heart steadfast.
Do this, and the wind will be friends with us.
The wind blows out weak fires.
He makes strong fires roar and flourish.
His friendship is good.
We praise him every day.
Wind, come softly.
Given below is the summary of the poem. Fill in the blanks with suitable words to complete the
summary.  Use only one word for each blank.
The poet begins by
a) ___________to the wind to blow softly and not cause havoc by breaking
b )___________against the wind since it has torn the pages of the books and has brought rain again. The poet feels that the wind is extremely clever as it
c) ____________fun of those who are weak. It does not like anything weak. Everything that
d) _______easily be it houses, doors, wood or rafters, is
e) _____________mercilessly by wind. Besides, it also crushes weak bodies, lives and hearts. The poet
f) __________wind to a God who doesn't do what people tell him to .The poet offers a
g) ____________to help humanity. He appeals to people to be firm, positive and strong both physically as well as mentally. They must have a
h) _____________heart if they want to be friends with wind. If we are strong then wind will not only
i) _____________ us but also aid us in achieving success and in flourishing. It is
j) __________to be friends with wind.

2. Question in lieu of Q2, Q5, Q8 and Q10 with marking scheme and answer key
Section A Reading

Question 2 : Read the passage carefully and complete the sentences that follow by choosing the
correct option for each: (5 marks)
Abraham Lincoln writes to the Headmaster of his son's school "He will have to learn, I know, that all men are not just, all men are not true. But teach him also that for every scoundrel, there is a hero and that for every selfish politician, there is a dedicated
leader. Steer him away from envy, if you can, teach him the secret of quiet laughter...

Teach him, if you can , the wonder of books... but also give him quiet time to ponder over the eternal mystery of birds in the sky, bees in the sun, and flowers on a green hillside." "In school, teach him that it is far more honorable to fail than to cheat...

Teach him to have faith in his own ideas, even if everyone tell him they are wrong...
Teach him to be gentle with gentle people, and though with the tough. Try to give my son the strength not to follow the crowd when everyone is getting on the bandwagon. Teach him to listen to all men, but teach him also to filter all he has heard on the screen of truth, and take on the good that comes through it." "

Teach him, if you can, how to laugh when he is sad... teach him there is no shame in tears. Teach him to scoff at cynics, and to beware of too much sweetness... Teach him to sell his brawn and brain to the highest bidders, but never to put a tag on his heart and soul. Teach him to close his ears to the howling mob... and to stand and fight if he thinks he's right." "Teach him gently, but do not cuddle him, because only the test of fire makes fine steel. Let him have the courage to be impatient... Let him have the patience to be brave. Teach him always to have sublime faith in himself because then he will always have sublime faith in mankind."

1. Abraham Lincoln writes a letter to his son's headmaster because …
a. he wants his son to be educated in the best possible manner.
b. he is very apprehensive about his son's welfare.
c. he wishes to assert his views on education.
d. he does not approve of the way the headmaster runs the school.

2. Reading books is important for students, but it is equally important...
a. for them to be quiet, and to think and introspect.
b. to make them appreciate the mysteries of nature.
c. to make sure they listen to their fellow beings.
d. to make them dedicated leaders.9

3. Students must understand the it is honorable to fail then to cheat because…
a. they are being watched by God.
b. by cheating they lose self-respect.
c. they develop the habit of cheating.
d. they will have to live with failure

4. Everyone is getting on the bandwagon. Here 'getting on the bandwagon' means…
a. the name of a vehicle.
b. joining popular and successful people.
c. riding a wagon.
d. chasing a wagon.

5.  Abraham Lincoln does not want the headmaster to cuddle his son because…
a. he is a ruthless father.
b. he doesn't care for his son.
c. the  headmaster is very strict.
d. he wanted his son to become strong.

3. Read the passage given below and complete the sentences that follow : (5 Marks)

Many animals are able to communicate with each other very well-but none of them can talk as we do.  That is, animals cannot speak and therfore cannot use words.Birds cry out and make sounds that other birds understand.  Smells, movements, and sounds are used for communication by animals. They express joy or anger or fear through these. Human speech is a very complicated process, which no animal can perform.  One reason is that in a very special way we use a whole series of organs to produce the sounds we want to make when we utter words.  The way our vocal cords are made to vibrate, the way the throat, mouth and nasal cavities are adjusted, the way the lips, teeth, lower jaw, tongue, and palate are moved - just to make vowel and consonant sounds, is something animals can't do.  They cannot produce a whole series of words to make a sentence.  And there is another, perhaps more important reason why animals can't talk.  Words are only labels for objects, actions, feelings expressions and ideas.  For example, the word 'bird' is a label for a living, flying object.  Other words
describe its colour, shape, flying and singing.  Still other words would be used to tell what the speaker thinks or feels about the bird or its actions. For human beings, therefore, the use of words means the use of labels or symbols, and then10
organizing them in a certain way to communicate something.  This requires a degree of intelligence and logical thinking that no animals have. So, they can't talk the way people do.

1.While human beings use words to communicate, birds and animals are different since they use ______________________________________________ for communication.

2.Though birds and animals cannot communicate like human beings, they are capable of____________________________________________.

3.The complicated process of human speech requires a very special way of using __________________________________.

4.Using words for communication requires intelligence and____________________.

5.Pick out a word form the third paragraph that means 'to move from side to side very quickly and with small movements'

4. Read the passage given below and answer the questions that follow by choosing the answers from given options. (5 Marks)

The death of Dr Christiaan Barnard, the famous transplant surgeon, has occurred at a time then many of his modern counterparts are facing difficulties. Many of the early problems, such as tissue rejection, have, to a great extent, now been solved, thanks to the introduction of new drugs. However, there remains a major problem. The people in need of transplant surgery far outnumber the available organs. The shortage of organ donors has caused several doctors to call for urgent improvements to be made to the system by which organs are donated. Many countries, such as Britain, have huge waiting lists of people whose lives could be saved by being given a kidney, lung, heart, or liver transplant. Sadly, many of them die before they reach the top of those lists. Under the present British scheme, people are asked to carry donor cards, and/or put their names on the national donor register. Thus, if they lose their lives suddenly, for example, in a traffic accident, they have given permission in advance of their deaths for their organs to be used. If they have not done so, surgeons are faced with the task of asking the distraught next-of-kin for permission to use the organs of the deceased. Of course, often the relatives are too upset even to think of such a thing until it is too late. Organ transplants have to take place quite soon after the death of the donor.
Dying and donating organs is not something most of us like to think about, and only about 14% of people have registered. Now, it has been suggested that, instead of the present register, there should be a register of people who wish to opt out of having their organs removed for transplant surgery. Increasing the number of donors is made more difficult because it is such an emotive issue. Just11 recently, an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that half of the families in the United States refused, when asked for permission to use the organs of their loved ones.

1. Contemporary doctors face difficulties in transplant surgery because
a) tissue rejection has not been solved
b) expert doctors like Christian Barnard are not at hand to give advice
c) people needing transplant outnumber donors
d) introduction of new drugs has led to harmful side effects.

2. Patients often meet an unfortunate end because of…………
a) shortage of donors
b) tissue mis-match
c) lack of good doctors
d) lack of funds

3. Carrying donor cards is helpful in……………………
a) asking people to donate organs
b) preventing accidental deaths
c) locating relatives of donors
d) locating donors quickly after death

4. Many do not want to donate organs because …………………
a) they are selfish
b) they cannot reach the hospital in time
c) they are ignorant
d) of emotional reasons

5. The word 'distraught' in the third paragraph means…………..
a) upset
b) angry
c) selfish
d) happy12


5. These days more and more children prefer processed and fast foods. This is leading to obesity and other diseases. Study the information given below regarding the advantages and disadvantage of natural and processed foods: (4 Marks)
Natural foods Processed foods

Advantage 1. fresh and tasty 1. can last long
2. healthy/nutritious 2. packed in bottles/cans
3. cheap 3. may be tasty

Disadvantages 1. perishable 1. contain chemicals and additives
2. have to buy daily 2. side effects
3. may cause diseases

Using the information given above, write a comparison of the two kinds of food for your school
magazine in 80 words. The description should include-
1. a comparison of the two types of foods
2. what should be the right choice, and
3. reasons for the choice.

6. You have noticed many stray animals on the road during the busy hours of the day. Write a letter to the editor of a leading newspaper about the nuisance created by the stray animals. Sign your name as Kriti/ Krishnan.  (120 words) (8 Marks)13

7. While reading the newspaper, you came across the following news item. Such incidents deter tourists from visiting the country. Based on the information given above,and using the ideas from the Unit Travel and Tourism and your own, write an article for a national newspaper in about 150 words on the subject offering suggestions for improving tourist facilities.  Also give a suitable title. (8 Marks)


8. Choose the most appropriate option from the ones given below to complete the following passage. Write the answers in your answer sheet against the correct blank number. (½ x8=4 Marks)

Three years ago, fresh (a)__________ of school, I (b) _________ the intimidating task of choosing a career (c) __________ college started. My uncle, (d) __________ of the elders of the family, suggested (e) _________ I do a summer job (f) __________ a multinational company followed by a month of social service with an NGO. He said that (g) __________ that I could (h)___________ which carrer to choose.

a) (i) from (ii) out (iii) in (iv) when
b) (i) in (ii) was (iii) have (iv) had
c) (i) for (ii) after (iii) before (iv) as
d) (i) are (ii) was (iii) one (iv) who
e) (i) when (ii) that (iii) which (iv) as
f) (i) in (ii) on (iii) for (iv) at
g) (i) before (ii) then (iii) after (iv) in
h) (i) made (ii) decision (iii) make (iv) decide

Two Dutch women attacked, robbed in New Delhi
New Delhi :  Two Dutch women on a wor ld  tour  were brutal ly at tacked and
robbed of their money and passports by two men posing as tourist guides, police said.14

9. Here are some notes about the annual function of Golden Jubilee School and College in the diary of the Cultural Secretary of the college. Study the given notes and complete the paragraph that follows by filling up the blanks with the most appropriate option from those given. (4 Marks)
Notes in the diary
2 Celebration of annual function of college.
2 The Mayor of the city-Chief Guest
2 Principal and staff welcomed him
2 The Mayor's wife gave away prizes
2 The Principal hosted dinner
The annual function of Golden Jubilee School and College
a)………….. with great pomp and show.  The Mayor of the city,
b)……………………… on the occasion.
c)…………………… by the Principal and the staff. 
d)………………………………..   the wife of the Chief Guest. 

A dinner was hosted by the Principal of Golden Jubilee School and College.
a) (i) was celebrated (ii) is being celebrated
(iii) has been celebrated (iv) had celebrated

b) (i) that was the Chief Guest (ii) Being the Chief Guest
(iii) who was the Chief Guest (iv) who was a Chief Guest

c) (i) was accorded a warm welcome on his arrival
(ii) has been accorded a warm welcome on his arrival
(iii) will be accorded warm welcome on his arrival
(iv) has been accorded a warm welcome on their arrival

d) (i) Prize were given to students (ii) Prize will be given away by
(iii) Prize had been given by (iv) Prizes were given away by

10. Rearrange the following words/phrases to form meaningful sentences. The first one
has been done for you. (4 Marks)
is familiar \ properties \ most \ the neem \ medicinal \ to \ people \ for its
The neem is familiar to most people for its medicinal properties.

a) \ it is \ distinctive curled \ star-shaped \ recognized \ leaves \ by its \ flowers \ and
b) are pale \ tinge of rust \ the young \ and green \ with a \ leaves15
c) New Year’s day \ to ward off \ are eaten \ leaves \ the \ on \ sickness
d) cupboards \ are dried \ and cockroaches \ they \ put in \ and moths \ to keep out

11. Read the following conversation between a mother and daughter while watching a
cricket match. Complete the passage given below. (1x4=4 Marks)
Mother : Who do you think will win the match?
Daughter : Who is wearing blue?
Mother : India
Daughter : Who are the men in yellow?
Mother : They are the Australians
Daughter : They will surely win the match.
Mother : Oh! Why do you feel so?
Daughter : There are 11 of them against just two Indians.
The mother asked her daughter who a)…………………………… The daughter enquired who the ones in blue were. The mother replied that they were Indians. The girl then wanted b) …………………………… When the mother said that they were  Australians, the daughter emphatically c) ……………………………. The mother d) ……………………. . The daughter replied that there were 11 of them against just two Indians.

12. Complete the following news reports accompanying the following headlines by filling
in the blanks. (1x4=4 Marks)
a) Drinking and Driving Banned
Drinking and driving ____________________.

b) Two killed in Accident
Two_________________________ between a car and a truck due to the fog on the roads

c) Drive against Illegal Constructions launched.
The police_________________________ illegally constructed houses in Mumbai

d) Cold wave claims 125 lives in country
The cold wave in North India ____________________ 125 people.


13 (A). Read the passages given below and answer the questions that follow by choosing
the correct options. (3 Marks)
(A) All in a hot and copper sky,
The bloody Sun, at noon,
Right up above the mast did stand,
No bigger than the Moon.

a) How is the Sun different now from the Sun earlier?
i. The sun is hot now but earlier the sun was glorious
ii. The sun is glorious and red now but earlier the sun was hot
iii. There is no Sun now only fog and mist
iv. The Sun was large earlier but now it is small

b) Why are the sailors unable to move at this moment?
i. They are stuck in the land of ice and snow
ii. They are unable to move because they are surrounded by icebergs
iii. There is no breeze to help them sail.
iv. The rotting vegetation does not allow them to sail.

c) Name a poetic device used in the above lines.
i. Repetition
ii. Imagery
iii. Simile
iv. Metaphor

CAESAR: And you are come in very happy time, (3 Marks)

To bear my greeting to the senators
And tell them that I will not come to-day:
CALPURNIA: Say he is sick.

a) Whom does Caesar greet in the first line?
i. Antony
ii. Decius Brutus17
iii. Brutus
iv. Antony

b) What message does Caesar want to send to the senators?
i. He will not come to the Senate.
ii. He wants to greet the senators.
iii. He is afraid to move out of the house.
iv. He is sick.

c) What makes Caesar change his mind?
i. He is feeling better.
ii. He wants to rejuvenate Rome and give it new blood.
iii. He is afraid of what the Senators will think of him.
iv. The information that the Senators plan to crown him.

13 (B). "The doctors were doing all they could, but in our hearts we knew we needed a
miracle". (3 Marks)
a) Who is the speaker of the above lines?
b) Who is being addressed?
c) What miracle is the speaker talking about?

14. Answer any four of the following questions. (2x4=8 Marks)
a) Why did John excitedly allow his wife to go back to her grandmother?
b) What makes the author refrain from killing the snake?
c) Why did Patol Babu walk away before he could be paid for his role?
d) The crowd in Julius Caesar does not understand the speech of Brutus. Comment.
e) Why did the Ancient Mariner stop and tell his tale to the Wedding Guest?

15. Bring out the use of the supernatural in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.             (6 Marks)


Mark Antony in 'Julius Caesar' says,
'Now let it work. Mischief, thou art afoot,
Take thou what course thou wilt!'
How was Antony successful in instigating the people of Rome against the conspirators? Write
your answer in about 150 words.18

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