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  • Vanita Pal


I know that most parents out there rue the day your son or daughter refused to read story books unless they were closely supervised. You do not have the time to do this and you wish that they were able to read on their own, like a duck taking to water.

Sounds impossible doesn’t it?

What about students? Do you find story books boring? Just the thought of wading through all those pages is like walking through a field filled with Lalang leaves (those sharp bladed leaves).


I have a way to rescue you from such a predicament.

No, I am not suggesting that you can go back to playing those games on your phones.

I actually have a way for you to read and enjoy so that your vocabulary will grow.

Just give me a few minutes and you will find that it will be such an incredibly easy task that you will wonder why you had not thought of it before.

No, no….this is not a gimmick. And I most certainly am Not trying to sell you anything.

This is just plain, good old-fashioned advice. A recipe straight out of the kitchen of my home and tuition centre where it has benefitted all those students who found reading a really dreadful bore.

You do not think it is a dreadful bore?

Really? Then why are you not lapping up all those books your parents have placed in your room?

Let me guess. Boring right? Then?

Wait. You do not like the ones they got for you?

Ok. That makes sense. Let me try to help.

What if I told you that I have got a really fantastic assortment of stories which will tickle your interest?

And what if I told you that you did not have to read tomes of books? And you most certainly do not have to read hundreds of pages?

Have I got your interest?

Then go on reading.

First of all Choose a Topic which you like

If you do not Know which topic that is, try this.

Choose one of the genres below.

1. Hybrid – Adventure, mystery, thriller

2. Hybrid – Adventure, comedy

3. Hybrid – Detective thriller/ mystery

4. Hybrid – Science fiction, thriller

These are the most popular type of genres which students like. If you do not really care for any of them just pick one. 1 and 3 are easy to read.


Adventure/ mystery/ thriller and Detective types of books have Suspense. You will only be able to untangle the story at the end. They have clues from the start and you are supposed to just go along for the ‘ride.’

Once you get into the story itself, it can be difficult to put it down.

Ok, you may say. What about the 100s of pages?

Secondly, choose a Collection of Short Stories

If you choose a collection of short stories, you do not have to read hundreds of pages. The story rarely goes beyond a hundred. Some are less than 50 pages!

Sounds wonderful doesn’t it?

All you have to do is to read ONE of those a week. Imagine, just 50 or so pages a week.

Observe the vocabulary used. Pick out your favourite ones. I mean the ones you have not come across before. And copy them in your phone ‘notes’ or ‘office notes.’

Make sure that you write down the meanings as well so that you can use them in your compositions for your school O level English papers.

Why are short stories so wonderful?

That is due to the concise way the Plot evolves. It is almost similar to your composition as the Main character, Background, Build-up, Climax, Revelation and Learning point are written in just a few pages.

You can even mimic the way the character evolves through the story build-up. Observe the way the story reaches that ‘biting point’ or the point where you have no idea what is going to happen.

Try to replicate this style in your own composition.

This reading is simply wonderful for Narrative, Descriptive, Reflective and Personal Recount compositions.

Ok. What about argumentative and expository? You may very well ask.

Yes, it can be a benefit when you use the vocabulary words which you have selected.

Short story writers are proficient in writing articulately and concisely. All the loose ends have to be tied up by the end of that short story so it is neat and summarised well at the end.

The words used can be of great use in your Argumentative and Expository compositions for your English O level writing paper.

Make sure that you keep referring back to your notes or office section where you have typed those words and use them as much as you can. Always keep doing that at least once a week.

What will you achieve?

· Your English Vocabulary skills will improve exponentially in just a few weeks.

· And your English usage will be more sophisticated whether it is in writing or speaking.

· Your standard of English in your Compositions will be so noticeable that your teacher will remark on it. (favourably, of course 😊)

If you do not believe that your English compositions can improve in this way, why don’t you just give it a try? Attempt the steps I have mentioned and see for yourself!

You will be thanking me, I am sure of that 😊


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