Sunday, October 5, 2008

Week 6 - Conjunctions, Connections and Compounds

Conjunction junction what's your function?  Hooking up words, phrases and clauses. 

So the School House Rock song goes!

This week we see how conjunctions, specifically coordinating conjunctions, are used to join two or more independent clauses together in order to add more flavor, variety and complexity in our writing and overall communication.

Too many simple sentences, can make our writing a little boring and even... well... a little simple.  So let's learn some ways to spice up our writing and to make it more interesting!

Focusing on the coordinating conjunctions (FANBOYS), let's create compound sentences using all of the coordinating conjunctions with the following sentences:

  1. I ran home.
  2. I was tired.

For--> I ran home for I was tired. (for is used to show cause or consequence relationship)

And --> I ran home and I was tired. (and is used to show similarity or association)

Nor --> I ran home nor I was tired. (nor is used to show similarity or association)

But --> I ran home but I was tired. (but is used to show contrast or opposition)

Or --> I ran home or I was tired. (or is used to show choice or omission)

Yet --> I ran home yet I was tired. (yet is used to show contrast or opposition)

So --> I ran home so I was tired.  (so is used to show result or consequence)

Notice that the NOR and OR compound sentences don't really make sense.  We would need slight modifications to the independent clauses to make more relational sense.  Like:

I didn't run home nor was I tired.

I could run home or I could walk home.

Coordinating conjunctions make sentences (and thus paragraphs) more interesting by showing relationships between your thoughts and ideas.  Ideas of equal importance often can be written in compound sentences using coordinating conjunctions.  It's all about relationship!  Coordinating conjunctions most often show similarity or association, contrast, consequence/result, or choice.

Add compound sentences to your writing assignment this week!

We have other conjunctions, subordinating conjunctions, that we will delve into in more depth in the weeks to come, as we discuss complex sentences. But for now, simply add the conjunction mastery chart to your memory work, so we can have the vocabulary and lists loaded and ready to go!

Using the teacher sheets for this week, have fun taking apart compound sentences.

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