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01_THE LAST LESSON

 

Summary

  • Notice on the Bulletin Board about the war front
  • Crowd gathered
  • School quiet : No sound of desks, lessons, teacher’s ruler
  1. Hamel
  • Didn’t scold/spoke kindly / Wore green coat, frilled shirt, black silk-cap / Announced last lesson in French, /German to be taught
  • Villagers, old Hauser, postmaster, others- on back benches /

Franz’s reaction to last lesson in French: Shocked, realized had not learnt the language, wished not had wasted time felt / sorry / repented for wasting time / Appreciated M. Hamel / accepted him with his faults /

Wanted to impress M. Hamel but fails in his recitation of participle rules /

Understood presence of villagers to thank master to show solidarity for country / repenting for not attending school /

  1. Hamelmade his class realise they were reluctant to learn /

postponed learning/

parents sent them to work/

himself sent students to water his plants/

all to blame for the situation/

too late to make amends /

–        no time to make up for lost time /

–         Germans will laugh at their inability to speak French

Main Characters

  1. M.Hamel

–        Sincere French teacher

–        Knows subject well

–        Passionate about French

–        Considers French-clearest, most beautiful, logical language

–         Feels language as a key to person’s sense of freedom / advises the people of Alsace tohold on to the French language / Proud of being French

–        Upset by occupation of Alsace by Germans

–         Attached to town,school, Pooplec/ Hard task Master

–        Particular about discipline and learning

–        Students scared

–        Last day made students do exercises on all aspects of language

–        Sensitive, honest

–        Blames himself for being selfish

–        Emotional, could not utter a word at the end of the class

  1. Franz

–        Sensitive, honest

–        Blames himself for ignoring lessons

–        Wonders if pigeons will coo in German

–        Understands feelings of Hauser

–        Loves outdoors, sunshine, birds, butterflies, collecting bird’s eggs.

–        Is a good observer, notices changes.

–        Empathizes with M. Hamel

–        Understands M.I.Hamel’s emotions, accepts him with his faults Short?

 

 

 

Questions& Answers

 

  1. Why was Fanz afraid to go to school that morning ?
  2. What temptation did Franz overcome to proceed to school?
  3. What was the significance of the bulletin-board in the town hall?
  4. What was unusual about the school that day? How was it different from a normal day ?
  5. What was the order that came from Berlin that day? What difference was it going to make on the lives of students?
  6. What universality of nature does the teacher comment upon? How did it affect Alsace and Lorraine?
  7. How did Franz’s altitude towards his books change after he heard about the order from Berlin?

8        How does M.Hand praise French language’’? Why is mother tongue important for enslaved people?

  1. How does M. Hamel hold parents and himself responsible for students neglecting their learning?
  2. What did M. Hamel write on the black board at the end of the class? How is it significant?
  3. How and why was M. Hamel dressed differently that day? Why were the villagers present in the class room?

 

Long Answer Questions

Answer the following in about 125-150 words each (6 marks each):

  1. In the story M.Hamel emerges not only as a dedicated teacher but also as a sensitive and understanding human being. Elaborate the character of M.Hamelin the light of the above statement.
  2. “When a people are enslaved, as long as they hold fast to their language it is as if they have the keys to their prison”. Discuss the significance of this statement in the light of the lesson. ‘The Last Lesson’.

 

Value Based Quest ions:-

 

  1. M. Hamel assumed that after having annexed their territories, Germans could ask the French “How is it, you pretend to be Frenchmen, and you can neither speak, nor write your own language.” Even an invader can put a question mark on our patriotism and love for mother tongue. With reference to the lesson ‘ The Last Lesson’ and emotional outburst of M. Hamel, write a speech for your morning assembly in around 100 words on the topic “National Identity over Individual interests.”
  2. Hamel said in his last class, “And I? I have been to blame also. “It requires tremendous courage and character to raise a finger at our own selves. Explain how we might witness many positive outcomes and welcome changes in our society if we have confidence to admit our own faults.

 

 

 

 

 

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