An Intensive Course in Bengali

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CIIL Intensive Cours e Series 5


Dia logues. Drills, Exercises, Vocabulary a nd Grammar



First Published

Revised Edition


December 1981 . Agrahayan ! 903

December 1994 Agrahayan 1916

© Central lnstituto of !ndian Languages, Mysore,


Price Rs. 93 J•


by Dr. E. Annama!ai, Director Centrar Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore Printed by Sri S. B. Biswas; Manager, CIIL Printing Press. Mysore-570 006


The Intensive Course Series aims at imparting mainly a proficiency in the listening and speaking skills of the lan2uage learnt. The learning materials are pr~sented in the script of the language throughout. In the beginning several lessons are presented in Devanagari as a prop. The books under this series do not provide the learners with an introduction to the script of the language. However, . the traditiona l alphabetic chart of the concerned language is given at the beginning of the book. In addition, the learners are expected to ma.ster the script of the language before they actually use the lessons of the Intensive Course. For this they are advised to use Script Book and Copy Books published hy the Central Institute of Indian Languages under CIIL Apni Boli Series. Language teaching, in some sense is an artificial actLvtty. It requires breaking the global language into, at times, even arbitrary units. The books in this series are no exception to this inevitable consequence of the model followed. This was. ho\\ ever, borne in mind all through to keep the artificial element under control. Each Language learning manual in the lntensi ve Course Series covers the "basic" structures of that language used for certain identified topics of common interest. Lessons are generally presented in the form of conversations. These ltssons are grouped under various units. The variables for the choice of dialect thro~gh which the materials are presented, the methods for the administration of exercises and drills in the class, and other tips for both the teacher and the learner would be found in the series. It should be emphasized here that the lntensi ve Course Series is an integral part of the scheme of language teaching of the Regional Language Centres of the Central lnsti tute of Indian Languages. Books in the In termidia te Course Series and the Advanced Course Series are an extension of the books published under the Intensive Course Series.



We would like to express our indebtedness to Dr. D. P. Pa tta· .oayak for his valuble suggetions and encouragement. We are also indebted to Dr. M . S. Thirumalai who guided us in preparation of the manuscript in its earlier form and who later took the pain of editing the same.

We are indebted to the Director, Dr. E. Annamalai for all his constructive suggestions and encouragement at every step. We extend our thanks to Prof. }. Mohanty, Dr. B. P. Mahapatra, Dr. N. K. Sinha, Dr. S. Mishra and Dr. A. Pradhan, who were the Principals in the Eastern Regional Language Centre at different times for their constant encouragetnent and suggestions. We are thankful to our collegues; Dr. B. C. Choudhury, Mr. A. K. Mukhopadhyaya, Dr. Kakali Das Sarkar, Dr. Sumita Bhattacharya and Dr. Kishore Kun1ar Rarhi for offering valuable suggestions at different stages. We are thankful to rnany of our students who have been responsible for many modifications. We are also thankful to Professor P. Sinha Roy and professor Nirmalya Chowdhury for their suggesnons. Finally, we would like to express our gratitude to Prof. Suhas Chatterjee for his critical comments on different occasions at the time of writing. Last but not the least we must express our thanks to Dr. Manjushree Roy for neat typing, Mr. K. Srini vasacharya of the Publication Unit and Mr. S. B. Biswas, Manager and staff of the CIIL Printing Press for taking pain in the execution of printing. KRISHNA BHATTACHARYA A. K. BASU


Language learning is a complex activity. Its success is largely dependant on the method, medium, material and the motivation of the learner. Furthermore, the highly organised curriculum and planning help to attain the educational goal easily and quickly. The present intensive course is meant for developing the listening and speaking skills of the learner. Along with this, book several other reading and writing materials like the Phonetic Reader, the Script Book, the semantically classified recall vocabulary and film strips and cassettes for teaching Bengali script and structures. prepared by the Central Institute of Indian Languages Training Programme may be used for the benefit of the learner. The present book is the prescribed instruction material for the basic course of the Bengali language Training Programme of the Central Institute of Indian Languages. The basic course consists of approximately 450 clock hours of instruction with prime emphasis on the spoken language. T'he present Intensive Course covers approximately 300 clock hours of instruction. This course is equally useful for any generalised second language Bengali teaching learning programme. The principles that underline this Intensive Course are as follows: 1.

Concentration on one objective· at a time : the teacher or the instructor presents the teaching materials in such a way that the learner concentrates on one structure or one teachable i tern at a time.

2. Selection, gradation

and systarnatisation of linguistic patterns : The numbers and the kinds of structures are

An Intensive Course In Bengali

decided with great caution on the basis of objectives of the Basic Course. Then these structures are controlled, systematised and graded from simple to difficult on the basis of the morphological and syntactic complexity. In this connection it should be borne in mind that the s-tructures presented in this cannot be claimed as exhaustive. The structures introduced here are basic and with the acquiring of these structures the learner will be able to manage day to day activities in a Bengali speaking community. 3. The intensive instruction consists of four basic presentation, explanation, repetition and transfer.



4. The teacher who introduces the linguistic patterns can do the classroom drifling. But depending on the intensive nature of the course it may be necessary to divide the responsibilities between separate persons. With this view in mind the teachable patterns are inserted in the body of the lesson and the drills and exercis-es are presented separately after the lesson.

The present book fulfils the following objectives of the basic courses offered ,at the Regional Language Centres of the Central Institute of Indian languages. (i)

To be able to form sentences orally from g1ven patterns and lexical i terns.


To be able to converse with the teacher and with fellow trainees on specified topics under controlled situations.


To be able to narrate special events and top1cs orally.


To be able to read simple material and daily news paper.



To be able to write simple free compositions an·d guided complex compositions.

Among the materials for teaching and learning Bengali as a second language so published, one has to refer the Introduction to Bengali, Part I accompanied by_ tapes, published from East -West Centre Press, Honululu, 1965. by Ed ward C. Dimock, Jr., Somdev Bhattacharji and Subas Chatterjee. There are two oth er books as following materials, viz., Introduction to Bengali, part II : Introductory Bengali Reader by Somdev Bhattacharji and Bengali Prose Reader by Edward C. Dimok, Jr. and others. The present work adopts ihe merits of the book prepared by Dimock, Bhattacharji and Chatterjee, but differs from it in several ways in terms of selection, gradation and presentation. It provides the learner with many different types of conversations in natural setting and presents various types of drills. As a result it leads the learner to use the language more functionally. The book prepared by Dimock and others is mainly meant for foreign students whose mother tongue is English. The present book primarily meant for Indian language speakers other than Bengali, is wider in scope. Lastly, to prepare the present book the authors have aimed at a compromise between purely structural and purely cui tural orientation. There are exercises and evaluation:-cum-tests as additional items for the improvement of the competence of the learner. As regards the teaching method to be adopted, the Central Institute of Indian Languages is highly convinced by theory and experience that no single method can explain and guide second language.learning as a developmental process. · To attain the goal different flexible and many-sided procedures and techniques may be employed. Therefore, the method adopted in our language teaching programmes is 'eclectic' incorporating insights from all available sources.

An Intensive Course In Bengali

The type of language used in this book is the Standard Colloquial Bengali which is spoken by a large number of people in all over Bengal. This intensive course consists of 25 units as mentioned in the contents, which are further subdivided into 94 lessons. Each unit contains two or more lessons. Each lesson consists of atleast one grammatical structure and the whole unit covers a group of related grammatical structures. So far as the time limit of each lesson is concerned, it will take about 3 clock hours of instruction in the classroom. The teachable patterns of the previous lessons are reinforced in the subsequent lessons. At the end of every unit there is a review lesson whcih exploits in a single place all the structures introduced so far. The body of the lesson is ma·inly conversational. are also a few pieces of narration.

But these

Each lesson is composed of five parts, a dialogue or a narrative, drills, exercises, vocabulary and grammatical notes in this order. The content of the body of the lesson is determined on the basis of the varied situations that the trainees are likely to be faced with while learning the language and that they may have to convey to their students as teachers. The sociocultural aspects are also taken into account in the selection of the contents. In the body of the lesson there is free English translation of the sentences to provide the learner with a general comprehension of the content. The drills are designed in such a way that through pattern practice the learner is trained to reproduce the patterns with automaticity. All the structures introduced in a particular lesson form part of the drills. The various types of drills included in this book are variation drill, repetition drill, build-up drill, expansion

lnt r oduction

drill, response drill, completion drill.

substitution drill,

transformation drill and

The exercise's like the drills are varied and graded. In a drill the learner is taught to give a grammatically correct answer. In an exercise he is expected to find out -an appropriate answer. Both drills and exercises are used as teaching devices. The vocabulary section includes the items that occur for the, first time. The vocabulary items are presented in the order of occurrence in the body of the lesson. The gloss in English is supplied against each item. The gloss, however, is restricted to the meaning conveyed in the particular lesson. With regard to the selection of the vocabulary items a reference may be made to the Recall Vocabulary and Common Vocabulary series prepared by the Cent.ral Institute of Indian Languages. The grammatical notes are simple and technical con1plicacies are avoided. The grammatical rules are restricted to the structures found in the lesson only and are explained in such a way that the learner can easily grasp the meaning of the structure. In this intensive course cultural notes do not form a separate section. Cultural notes often are supplied in the vocabulary items and grammatical notes. In this book also the Bengali script is employed from the very beginning to the end. It is expected that using the script from the beginning will enable the learner to read the written materiaJs fluently. In the Basic Course itself the learner can learn the script within ten clock hours as our experience shows. Hence, the teacher is expected to ask the students to start reading the text in the script of the language concerned. Before going to do this job the teacher should dearly state the pronunciation rules. There are three types of relationships among Bengali sounds and their corresponding written symbols. These are as follows :

An Intensive Course In Bengali


One letter for one sound


One letter for more than one sound


Several letters for one sound

In this regard the Bengali Phonetic Reader may be utilised profitably. The Bengali alphabet does not possess a separate symbol for the low-mid front unrounded vowel [re]. The same letter 111) is used for both high-mid, front unrounded vowel [e] and the low-mid fr~nt unrounded vowel (re]. So pronunciation rules must be provided to clarify this discrepancy.




~ \5rtm~ ~t~


: 13f~;j ~ ";[ ~~ ~TQ'";[ I


g ~t~ ;rt~ c~i~ 1

My name is Mohan.


Your name is Mohan.

f~~CfiT : \ffl[j~f~ ";[TJl BT~~ I \51 t~ 1~ ;rtll \1fil1J{ ~TJl

F ?


g ~9f~~ ;rt1f ~i I




g 'B;rf~ ;rtl1 ~ !



f~ fCf~CfiT : GJf;:r ; ~ ;:r r~ ~


Your name is Krishna.


What is his (remote) name?

fqi ?

g -e;rt~ ~t~ ~~9f I


: \1JT;:rr~ ~P:r qroq 1


~ ~~

His (remote) name 1s Pradip

;rtlJ ~? f!flfq~Cfil : ~";[I~ ";[T~ fCfi ?

What is his name? 1


.An Intensive Course in Bengali


l!1m ;rt1l :.~


t{ifT~ ~~ ~J:A'

His (Proximate) name is Suman.



Repetition Drill ( ~~ \5t'Y) lli


... ... ... ... ... Substitution Drill ( ~~9f-t ~'Y}Pf ) ~I



.... .... .... .. .. .... .. .. .. .. ... ... ....


~~t ~ I

~~~~ ;rtlt ~ I


... .... ... .... ....


.... ... .... ..'. ....


Transformation Drill ( 1fi~ ~~Jt~ ~ I


~'tl{ ~ I

~ I

~~~ ~ f )

:> I

~G-f ~G-1 ~



.... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... ....



.... .... .... .... .... ....



Cour8e in Bengali

'€~ ~ '5ft~ ~ ?

I!> I

.... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... ....



Transformation drill (~~~~)

~ I

~~t:'1i ~~ I


t;, ~Vi \!q l ~ t~

8 I

t1 'e~ \S;rtl )

~rmi ~~ ~tf~ 1


~~i ~~ ~~~t9f


.... .... .... ....

'llit~~ I