Educating Mother is a lesson in the textbook for class 7. The writer is Suganthy Krishnamachari. The story is filled with examples showing the fancy and inquisitiveness of children who keep on interrupting the story teller with questions and even doubts. Here are given meanings of difficult words, summary and solutions to book exercises.
Educating Mother Class 7, Difficult Word-Meanings
get on – to continue doing something, to perform and progress successfully
insist– to say or demand firmly or repeatedly
ignore – avoid or disregard
strayed – moved away from a familiar place (भटक जाना )
ante-diluvian days – very old fashioned, antiquated
staple – basic or main important part of something
thriller – a suspenseful exciting adventure story or play or movie based on mystery, crime, espionage etc
macabre – frightening, fearful, horrible
indulgent – lenient and kind and very permissive allowing others to do or have what they want
approve of – to consider right and agree to support
heiress – a female heir having right of inheritance (उत्तराधिकारी )
bits – pieces and parts of something
awe – wonder, a feeling of respect mixed with slight fear
encroach – to intrude or cross limit (अतिक्रमण )
frighten off – frighten away, to make so afraid or nervous that they rum away or keep distance (डरा के भागा देना )
presently – happened after a short time
air of hostility – feeling of unfriendliness
of course – obviously, naturally, agreeing with others (बिल्कुल , निःसंदेह, क्यों नहीं)
charming – pleasant and attractive
simpering – foolish, silly and affected smile to please others, lacking courage
daft – silly
indignantly – with anger, in wrath
protagonist – the main character, hero, champion
genetically modified – an organism or plant whose DNA has been altered (change in genes) for improvement. (example- genetically modified seeds that are more resistant to diseases or pests)
propel – to move forward
Summary: Educating Mother Class 7 English
In the past, grandparents were the ones who told stories to children with the aim of improving their vocabulary and imparting moral values. However, today’s children are more technologically inclined and cannot be entertained with old-fashioned tales. This story revolves around a mother who is urged by her own mother to entertain her children, including her twelve-year-old daughter Ambu, four-year-old son Ramu, six-year-old niece Janaki, and three-year-old nephew Venku, with a story. The narrator begins with the classic tale of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, but the children are unimpressed and ask uncomfortable questions. Ambu and Janaki analyse the story and offer their own improved versions, which capture the attention of the younger children. Frustrated, the narrator switches to ‘Red Riding Hood’, but the children once again find flaws in the plot and suggest alternatives. Cinderella’s story is also met with criticism, forcing the narrator to move onto ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’. However, the children’s questioning continues, and the narrator ultimately switches to the folktale of Patala Bhairavi. Exhausted by the children’s endless questioning, the narrator gives up and flees at the very first opportunity.
Textbook Question Answers
1. (a) Ambu was a twelve-year-old daughter of the narrator.
(b) She was referring to Goldilocks.
(c) It tells us that she had an independent, creative and curious and curious mind.
2. (a) Janki is the speaker here.
(b) ‘She’ refers to Goldilocks.
(c) Because there were no cell phones in those days.
3. (a) The words of Ambu are being referred here.
(b) Ambus’s version of story excited them more than that of the mother.
(c) It means that the children were listening to her with keen interest. She was narrating the story in such a way that she held the interest of the children with her storytelling.
- The Grandmother requested that her daughter tell a story to the children.
- Venku, Ambu, Ramu, and Janaki were the attentive listeners of the story.
- Ambu interpreted Goldilocks’ story as a murder mystery. She believed that the protagonist was an heiress and the owner of the forest house intended to kill her. She also thought the bears were not real but were made up by the storyteller.
- Ambu did not appreciate the Cinderella story as she considered the protagonist to be a helpless, unintelligent girl waiting for a prince to rescue her.
- Ambu suggested that Cinderella could have liberated herself from her stepmother by pursuing education and getting a job instead of doing household chores. She could have enrolled in a night school to achieve this.
- Ambu referred to stories that portray women as powerless, foolish, and lacking choices as having “gender bias.”
- The author gave up telling stories to the children because they were quick to question the norms and come up with their own interpretations.
- The mother felt hostility when she could not entertain the children with her stories. When telling the Cinderella story, her younger child questioned why grandmas did not resemble wolves. The mother struggled to keep the children interested.
- I think that the mother was telling story to these children for the first time. We reach this conclusion by observing the behaviour of the children. She was not accustomed to such questioning and reactionary behaviour of children otherwise she would have known how to entertain the children.
- The mother knew many stories so we cannot say that that she was a failed storyteller altogether. We can say that the children failed her as a good storyteller as they raised critical questions and the mother failed to answer them properly. So, we can conclude that she was a good storyteller but this time she failed to entertain the children.
- Here ‘Politically Correct’ means that if anyone is sticking to telling the truth or facts even then he may not be accepted well. It is sometimes needed to manipulate the stories or facts or words to suit or convince the audience. For example- the mother wanted to start a story in which a boy was the protagonist but he was a daft.
- ante-diluvian 2. whodunits 3. indulgent mother 4. staple diet 5. air of hostility 6. gender bias 7. environmentally conscious 8. genetically modified 9. encroach
A. 1. very; manner 2. rarely; frequency
3. yesterday; time 4. Everywhere; place
5. soundly: manner 6. so; reason
7. always, on time; frequency, time 8. down; place
9. nearly; degree 10. quickly; manner
11. too; degree 12. only, therefor not; manner, reason