The following sentence has been set in previous examination.
She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
Look at the following final paragraphs from different responses. For each one there is a summary of the narrative prior to this point.
Tick those that seem appropriately used and put a cross next to the others.
Discuss your thoughts with others before making your final decision. Keep a few notes about each one. You may be unsure about some but make a decision one way or the other.
Then click to receive some feedback.
A student has had a difficult time at school. She has been bullied and tormented for months. She finally finds someone she thinks is a friend.
I knew that I had to trust her. I had finally found someone who I could talk to and confide in when things got too tough. My heart began to feel less heavy for the first time in ages – especially when she smiled. “I am so pleased that you understand the way I have been feeling,” I said with some hope, “it’s been wonderful to know that things can get better. What do you think we should do now?” She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
There has just been a terrible road accident. Police have arrived and have been dealing with the situation. A member of the public has been sitting with one of the most injured people.
I must have been falling in and out of consciousness but I remember how cold it was at the side of that road in the rain. I had been arguing with my mum in the car before we crashed – I do remember that clearly. Now, I could see that she was not injured because she was standing and talking to a policeman not far from me. Suddenly, I was hit by a powerful stabbing pain in my legs She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
The narrator believes that he has been visited by the ghost of his grandmother. She has been guiding him through some difficult times. Finally, his life seems to be more stable, he is about to start University.
I heard her voice for the last time. “Don’t worry Adam. Life is never going to be easy but you are strong enough to cope with what it throws at you. I have to go now. You won’t see me but I will be at your side.” I didn’t want her to go. “Please stay Gran, I love you so much.” I felt the warmth of her kiss on my forehead. I looked up and saw her reassuring smile for the last time. She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
The narrator explains how difficult it was to summon the courage to talk to a young woman he saw on the bus to work every day. They develop a close relationship but it runs into trouble after he spends the night with her friend but lies about the incident. She breaks up with the narrator after meeting him in the park.
She made it clear that I was probably the worst person she had ever met in her life. I know I betrayed her, lied to her and treated her friend like dirt, so she was probably not far from the truth. She told me that If I ever came anywhere near her again she would send her brothers to ‘sort me out’ as she put it. She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
- The closing sentence has been appropriately used in Paragraph 3 as the wave seems a natural way to end the narrative as his grandmother has already said her goodbyes and he understands.
Paragraph 1 feels as if something is missing as waving and walking away at that point seems too final and rather uncaring and uncommunicative for someone who has just been praised by the narrator as empathetic.
- Paragraph 2 does not make sense because the mother would not wave and walk away from a son/daughter in pain after a road accident. If there was a more sinister reason such as the mother pretending not to be involved, then there needed to be more explanation for the ending to be appropriate, e.g.
I heard the policeman ask her if she was a relative. I saw her shake her head and explain that she had never seen me in her life. I looked towards her in sheer disbelief. She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.
- Paragraph 4 is not quite right as the ex-girlfriend would probably not wave at him without further comment after such a threat. Her wave needs to be set up in a way that it is dismissive and final. It would work better if it ended in this way:
She told me that If I ever came anywhere near her again she would send her brothers to ‘sort me out’ as she put it. Her voice was filled with a sarcasm I had not heard before and a hatred that you could almost taste. She gave a small wave, turned and walked away.