KCSE 2015 English Paper 1 with Marking Scheme

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  1. You are the secretary of the Young Farmers Club in your school. The club has just held its meeting. The patron of the club and eight of its ten members attended. The deputy principal also attended. During the meeting the issue of starting a fish pond was revisited. Members also discussed the following issues: club’s financial status, members' annual trip and sale of club’s farm produce.
    Write down the minutes of the meeting. (20 marks)
  2. Read the passage below and fill in the blank space with the most appropriate word. (10 marks)
    The positive way to react to disappointment is to use it as a (1)………… for growth. This is not easy, but it is the only way to deal with an (2) ……… aspect of life. Helen, the woman who was not promoted, could have (3)……………. her disappointment by looking at other (4)……….. For instance, if her boss did not recognize her talent and hard work, (5)…………… she could transfer to another department or ask the boss how she could improve her performance in order to be a candidate (6)………. the next promotion. Jamal, the young man who did not (7)…………..into the college of his dreams, should look into other institutions of higher learning. Going to another college may encourage him to be his (8)…………….man, step out of his brother’s shadow, and realize that being turned (9)……………by one college is not a final judgment on his abilities or potential. Disappointments in life can make us bitter or better, (10)…………… we become victims or victors is our choice. Adapted from: College Writing Skills and Readings, Sixth Edition. Newyork: Lisa Moore(2005) by Langan John.
    1. Study the passage, below which is about negotiation and conflict resolution, and then answer the questions that follow.
      One evening Linda was walking down a desolate, dangerous block lined with abandoned, boarded-up buildings when suddenly, out of nowhere, she was surrounded by three boys about fourteen years old. One pulled out a knife with a four-inch blade as they pressed around her.
      ‘’Give me your purse! Now!’’ the boy with the knife hissed.
      Though frightened, Linda had the presence of mind to take some deep breaths and reply coolly, ‘’I’m feeling a little uncomfortable. You know, guys, you are a little into my space. I’m wondering if you could step back a little.’’
      Linda studied the pavement- and, to her amazement, she saw them take a few steps back. ‘’ Thank you,’’ she said. Then she continued, ‘’Now, I want to hear what you said to me, but to tell you the truth, I’m a little bit nervous about that knife. I’m wondering if you could put it away.’’
      After what seemed an eternity of silence and uncertainty, the knife went back into the pocket.
      Quietly reaching into her purse, Linda took out 1,000/= shilling note, caught the eye of the one with the knife, and asked, ‘’who should I give it to?’’
      ‘’Me,’’ he said.
      Glancing at the other two, she asked if they agreed. One of the two nodded.
      ‘’Great,’’ she said, handing the leader the 1,000/= shilling note. ‘’Now here is what’s going to happen. I’m going to stay right here as you walk away.’’
      With puzzled looks on their faces, the boys started to walk away, glancing over their shoulders at Linda – and then they broke into a run. They were running from her. (Adapted from Working with Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman. London Bantam Books, 1999)
      1. From the passage it is evident that Linda has good negotiation skills. Identify four of these skills. (4 marks)
      2. Why would we describe this encounter as a win-win situation? Explain your answer. (3 marks)
      3. Describe the rhythm of the last paragraph of this passage. (2 marks)
    2. Read the poem below and answer the questions that follow:
      Geniuses of countless nations
      Have told their love for generations
      Till all their memorable phrases
      Are common as goldenrod or daises.
      Their girls have glimmered like the moon,
      Or shimmered like a summer noon,
      Stood like lily, fled like fawn,
      Now the sunset, now the dawn,
      Here the princes in the tower
      There the sweet forbidden flower.
      Darling, when I look at you
      Every aged phrase is new
      And there are moments when it seems
      I’ve married on the Shakespeare’s dreams.

      By Ogden Nashi in Literature.
      Boston: McDougal Littel, 2008.
      1. Describe the rhyme scheme in this poem and say what it does. (4 marks)
      2. Identify and illustrate any two instances of alliteration in the poem. (2 marks)
      3. Explain how you would perform the last four lines. (3 marks)
    3. Examine the sets of words below and on the basis of pronunciation of the vowel sounds that have been highlighted, pick the odd one out. (6 marks)
      1. Leopard
      2. Audience
      3. Said
      4. Neither
      5. Gone
      6. Food
    4. On your way home from school, you meet a lady who tells you she is new in the neighborhood. She requests you to give her directions to the nearest police station. How would you ensure that the directions you give enable her to reach her destination? (6 marks)


  1. Answer must be in the form of minutes.

    Points to look for:

    1. Heading Expect the following: (1 mark)
      • Nature of meeting Time
      • Venue
      • Date
        Nature of meeting and date must be included
    2. List of attendance
      Include the following: (2 marks)
      • Members present
      • Absent with apologies
      • Absent without apologies
      • In attendance (patron)
      • Agenda (optional)
      • A list of the items of agenda
    3. Actual minutes (content and format) (9 marks)
      Expect the following:
      • Correct numbering
      • Preliminaries
      • Confirmation of minutes
      • Matters Arising (Fish pond)
        • Discussion
        • Resolution
      • Club's financial Report
        • Discussion
        • Resolution
      • Members Annual trip
        • Discussion
        • Resolution
      • Sale of farm produce
        • Discussion
        • Resolution
      • AOB
      • Adjournment
      • Provision for confirmation and signing
        Must have a discussion and a resolution
        If minutes are signed, deny a mark
    4. Language use and mechanics of writing (8 marks)
      • Correctness of expression
      • Word choice
      • Appropriate tense and voice
      • Spelling
      • Punctuation
        Award 6 marks format, 6 marks content and 8 marks for language use.
        May be categorised based on the candidate's ability to communicate.
        A - 7-8 Complete command of the language. A few errors that are felt to be slips.
        B - 5-6 Candidates at ease with the language. Occasional errors but communication is not strained.
        C - 3-4 Limited linguistic ability. Candidate communicates understandably but more or less clearly. There is no economy of language - frequent repetitions. Also jerky and weak flow, mother tongue influence and errors of agreement, tense and spellings.
        D - 0-2 Minimal communicative ability. Flow of thought is hard to follow. Essay full of gross errors of all types.
  2. Cloze test (10 marks)
    1. Chance, reason
    2. Inevitable, unavoidable
    3. handled, managed
    4. options, possibilities
    5. perhaps, maybe possibly
    6. for
    7. get
    8. own
    9. down
    10. whether
        • Able to communicate effectively.
          Engages them in a conversation and says she wants to hear what they are saying
        • She uses courteous language e.g thank you.
        • Assertiveness - she asks them to step back a little and to put away the knife.
        • Compromising/ceding ground - she is able to negotiate with them - she knows that negotiations are about give and take so she gives them Ksh1,000.
        • Creates rapport/she appeals to their humanity - calls them guys and thanks them. She also reveals her own human vulnerabilities - her fear and nervousness - and this in turn appeals to their conscience. She establishes eye contact with one of the boys, making him feel important. Any four points (4 marks)
      2. Both sides win in this encounter. Linda escapes being hurt or even killed, and saves the rest of the contents of her purse. In a sense, she creates goodwill in the boys. The boys get Ksh1,000, which is what they want; and they change their attitude towards Linda. It is a win-win situation. (3 marks)
      3. Before the pause signalled by the dash, the boys are hesitant and feeling awkward. The rhythm here is slow and drawling. But after the pause, we get fast-paced, staccato rhythm. The boys are running. (2 marks)
        • regular
        • aa bb cc dd ee ff gg
        • To enhance rhythm; to draw attention to the meanings of the rhymed pairs of words.
        • It creates harmony/musically memorability. (2 marks)
      2. alliteration e.g. girls, glimmered; like, lily; fed, fawn;
        forbidden, flower. If sound not identified deny marks. (2 marks)
      3. Change to direct address (Darling); a major variation in tone. I would look
        at some imaginary girl, speak to her in a drawling intonation, in a loud whisper, with open gestures, and in a romantic tone. The pace slows down, there is a pause for emphasis. (3 marks)
      1. deodorant
      2. loud
      3. said
      4. neighbour 
      5. gone
      6. book
        1 x 6 = 6 marks
    4. Giving effective directions:
      • Use clear language Use landmarks e.g. trees, rivers, buildings etc.
      • Use words such as turn right, turn, left, etc.
      • Physically point out the direction
      • Repeat where necessary
      • Give approximate distances, e.g. 1 km, 200 metres etc.
      • Give approximate time e.g. walk for about 10-15 minutes
        Expect 6 points - Instructions should not be given in negative form. If given in negative form deny marks. (6 marks)
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