English Language Examination Questions for Senior School Students (SS1)

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English Language Examination Questions for Senior School Students (SS1)

These English questions have been compiled to serve as a reference material to aid teachers set tests and examination questions without much stress.
School pupils/tutors will find it very helpful  in revision and exam preparation.

CLASS: SS1 SUBJECT: English Language TIME: 2 HOURS
Instruction: Answer FOUR Questions in all ONE question from Section A and all question in Section B


1. Your sister wants to marry a man from another ethnic group against your mother’s wishes. Write a letter to your mother giving her at least three reasons why she should accept your sister’s decision.
2. Your school’s literary and Debating Society has organized a debate on the topic: “The Television is Doing More Harm Than Good to Our Youths”. Write your contribution for or against the topic.
3. Write a story which ends with the words “Had I known, I wouldn’t have believed him”.


4. Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions on it.
When health workers first came to the village and talked about family planning, no one took them seriously, including Amusa, whose young wife was then pregnant with their first baby. Had their fathers and forefathers before them not had as many wives and children as they desired? And had they not been able to take care of their families?

So everyone shunned the family planning clinic which was established in the village shortly afterward.

Twelve years later, Amusa was a clerical assistant in the city and lived with his wife and eight children in a single room because he could not afford larger quarters. For as long as he could remember, his large family had been going through difficult times, which appeared to be worsening lately.

Only yesterday, his third child had been sent away from school because her parents could not replace her old and torn school uniform. Last year, their first son could not proceed to the secondary school as the family could not afford the cost. Then recently, the landlord had announced his intention to increase the rent.

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Amusa found himself thinking about the days when he was himself a young child. His own father had two wives and thirteen children, yet as far as he could remember, the family had no faced anything similar to what he was going through now. He suddenly realized that this was because the time had changed and that the requirements of modern living put great pressure on large family sizes. His father’s time and age had been different: he had been a successful farmer in the village, had lived in his own house, employed members of his large family as farm hands and fed everyone from the abundance of the farm. On the other hand, Amusa lived in the city on a limited income.

He had no farm land nor even a vegetable garden, and had to pay for everything, from his rented room to be smallest domestic need of his family. And at four or five times what they cost a few years before!
It was then that he sadly remembered the health workers and their gospel of family planning. How he wished he had listened and taken their advice! Unfortunately, he had not. And what was even more unfortunatewas that the millions in Amusa’s shoes became wiser only when it was too late.

(a) What advice do you think the health workers gave to the villagers?
(b) Give two reasons why the villagers did not take the health workers seriously.
(c) Give two indication of Amusa’s financial difficulties
(d) Mention any two differences between Amusa’s condition and his father’s
(e) “And had they not been able to take care of their families?”
(i) What literary device is used in this expression
(ii) What does it mean?
(f) For each of the following words or phrases, find another words or phrase which means the same and which an replace it as it is used in the passage;
(i) shunned (ii) established; (iii) announced; (iv) going through
(v) limited; (vi) shoes


SECTION 1: In each of the following sentences, there is one word or group of words underlined and one gap. From the list of words or group of words lettered A to D, choose the one that is most nearly opposite in meaning to the underlined word or group of words and that will, at the same time, correctly fill the gap in the sentence.

1. The workers expected management to be……rather than indifferent to their welfare. A. different from B. interested in C. opposed to
D. careful of
2. Words spoken in the heat of an argument could offend rather than ….. A. pacific B. amuse C. inspire D. irritate
3. Although they have declared the student a suspect, he may turn out to be ….. A. miserly B. careful C. thoughtful D. extravagant
4. Some outspoken social critics live a ….family live A. reserved B. happy C. boisterous D. still
5. While the manger was prudent in his expenditure, his deputy was …..A. miserly B. careful C. thoughtful D. extravagant
6. The cultured and the …… are known by their conduct. A. barbaric
B. ignorant C. clean D. lazy
7. Many Africans now live in abject poverty instead of enjoying the ….of the countries A. comfort B. greatness C. possessions D. affluence
8. Tunde seldom asks questions in class and was….very careful when he did. A. hardly B. sometimes C. often D. never

SECTION 2: From the word letter A to D, choose the word that best completes each of the following sentences;
9. Tests revealed that the winning athlete had taken performance-enhancing….A.drugs B. tablets C. vitamins D. capsules
10. The lawyer’s client was ….under oath in the law court. A. investigated B. interrogated C. cross-fired D. cross-examined
11. That Fulani man has a large ……….. of cattle A. herd B. flock C. multitude D. swine
12. The relationship between the couple is ……for lack of communication, A. tense B. strained C. relaxed D. uneasy
13. Many players have complained about biased…by referees A. officiating B. control C. direction D. handling
14. Government officials have to swear to ….of secrecy A. an oath B. avow C.a pledge D. an Act
15. The students……the planned meeting with the new principal.
A refused B. neglected C. boycotted D. rejected
16. She won by…..because her opponent the …..for cheating in examinations. A. defeat B. default C. defiance D.defense
17. Some candidates have developed the ……for cheating in examinations. A. instinct B. addiction C. knack D. habit
18. The secretary was…from her job for absenteeism A. evicted B. dismissed C. rejected D. eliminated


After each of the following sentences, a list of possible interpretations is given. Choose the interpretation that you consider most appropriate for sentence.
19. Peter was on tenterhooks until the examination results were announced. This means that Peter was A. unhappy about the examination B. suspended from school C. anxiously waiting for the results. D. detained by the police
20. The military leader blazed the trail by handing over power to civilians. This means that the leader A. resigned from the army B. supported civilian ideals. C. was against the army. D. set an example
21. Life is all about “give and take”. This means that A. people should be willing to compromise. B. life gives and takes C. life is about gifts
D. any gift should be accepted.
22. Jumai’s life was in danger but now she had turned the corner. This means that Jumai A. has given up hope of recovery B. has worsened her situation. C. is recovering D. has died
23. It is unwise for politicians to make off-hand statements to journalists. This means that politicians A. should insist on their interviews being recorded B. would be wise not to speak to journalists C. should not make any statement to journalists D. should be sure of whatever they say.
24. The dentist told his patient that the toothache would pass off when he took some aspirins. This means that A. the tooth would automatically drop off. B. the pains would subside C. the pains would spread to other teethed. D. the pains would worsen.
25. The students made such a noise in the class that the teacher read them the Riot Act. This means that the teacher A. punished all the students. B. instigated the student to riot C. warned the students to stop the noise or get punished D. read the school’s rules and regulations to the students.
26. When I went on leave I asked Mr. Barnson to hold the forte. This means that I asked him to A. defend me B. ac in my absence.
C. protect my position D. be strong in my absence
27. The senator’s house is the last word in comfort. This means that the senator A. has the most comfortable house B.speaks about the comfort of his house C. owns the last house on comfort streets D. has a house that is not comfortable
28. I was given a standard ovation for my outstanding performance. This means that A. everyone stood up to clap for me B. everyone stood to catch a glimpse of me C. everyone congratulate me D. I was asked to stand up.

SECTION 4: From the words lettered A to D below each of the following sentences, choose the word that is nearest in meaning to the underlined word as it is used in the sentence.
29. His father’s death derailed his plans to enter the university
A. discouraged B. failed C. moved D. ruined
30. Adamu inadvertently shot his friend dead. A. deliberately
B. spontaneously C. accidentally D. inappropriately
31. The student made scathing remarks about the vice chancellor.
A. critical B. positive C. mild D. damaging
32. Several cabinet ministers joined the president’s retinue for this summit conference. A. entourage B. vehicle C. followers D. enemies
33. The manager refused his deputy’s request in reprisal for his disloyalty. A. compensation B. annoyance C. retaliation D. exchange
34. She spurned the advances of her boss A. accommodated B. accepted C. rejected D. discouraged
35. Whatever he says is irrevocable A. final B. false C. debatable
D. unclear
36. Lunatics have some lucid movements A. troubled B. quiet C. noisy D. sane
37. Don’t expect anything but hypocrisy from politicians. A. promises
B. manifestoes C. insincerity D. dishonesty

SECTION 5: From the words or group of words lettered A to D, choose the word or group of words that best completes each of the following sentences.

38. The secretary needs to run……two hundred copies of the previous minutes for the next meeting. A. off B. on C. out D. over
39. Let us keep….the plans we made earlier A. away B. to C. off D. on
40. To be alive after such a serious accident…. A celebration. A. is called for B. calls for C. has been called for D. call for
41. She does not remember ever….. a tiger. A. to see B. to have seen
C. seeing D. having to see
42. The commissioner for Education with his secretary….expected yesterday A. are B. was C. were D. is
43. After rigorous interrogation, the thief had no alternative….to confess the truth. A. except B. unless C. but D. rather
44. The director is open….criticism. A. for B. to C. on D. about
45. Tunji divided the money between David and ……A. he B. him
C. himself D. themselves
46. The jury gave…..verdict. A. it’s B. its C. his D. her
47. No……..person will do that. A. matured B. maturing C. mature D. matures
48. She stabbed her friend…..the back. A. on B. at C. upon D. in
49. I am not accustomed……on an empty stomach A. to sleep B. to have slept C. for sleeping D. to sleeping
50. Take your share and give them….A. their B. there C there’s D. theirs


SECTION 1: From the word lettered A to D, choose the word that has the same vowel sound as the one represented by the letter(s) underlined. An example is given below:
Example: Seat A. sit B. cite C. set D. key

The correct answer is D because only key contains the same vowel sound as the one underlined in seat.

1. bark A. mass b. ant C. pass D. ward
2. story A. drought B. spot C. fought D. through
3. sack A. back B. dark C. task D. false
4. look A. fool B. could C. boulder D. biology
5. best A. leopard B. regal C. saying D. legal
6. cool A. foot B. cook C. pull D. brute
7. sit A. creature B. colleague C. wanted D. police
8. rush A. bush B. plough C. put D. rough
9. worse A. sort B. urge C. worn D. gorge
10. mother A. perky B. mercy C. surprise D. purchase
11. fair A. wear B. dear C. here D. mere
12. make A. height B. weigh C. says D. plait
13. rear A. pear B. heir C. fear D. swear
14. know A. sew B. grew C. vow D. how
15. cloud A. route B. bouquet C. bowl D. growl

SECTION 2: From the words lettered A to D, choose the word that has the same consonant sound(s) as the one represented by the letter(s) underlined. An example is given below.

Example: vice A. cat B. dress C. show D. chalk
The correct answer is B because only dress has the same consonant sound as the one underlined in vice;

16. hang A. stingy B. tinge C. sing D. hinge
17. wither A. healthy B. wealthy C. breath D. feather
18. find A. handsome B. sandwich C. sandpaper D. handkerchief
19. pain A. coup B. report C. corps D. receipt
20. pleasure A. vision B. mansion C. regiment D. pressure
21. baker A. debt B. lamb C. plumber D. humble
22. count A. civil B. pack C. cease D. indict
23. wash A. nation B. occasion C. treasure D. equation
24. ten A. depot B. listen C. attack D. Christmas
25. zebra A. assign B. design C. insist D. persist
26. path A. there B. smooth C. warmth D. soothe
27. see A. cats B. clause C. wars D. boys
28. loud A. walk B. shoal C. yolk D. should
29. plant A. price B. pistle C. riddle D. couple
30. marks A. exist B. exhaust C. axe D. masque

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