The Sentence The focus is on the following: Subjects and predicates Simple/complete subjects Simple/complete predicates Inverted sentences Verb phrases Compound subjects and predicates Kinds of sentences Simple sentences Fragments Comma splices Run-ons Stringy sentences Sentence combining Conjunctions Compound sentences Complex sentences Dependent clauses Independent clauses
Every sentence has two main parts: a subject and a predicate. The subjecttells whom or what the sentence is about. The simple subject is the main word that is always found inside of the complete subject, and the complete subject will be everything before the verb. The only exception to this is when there is an adverb phrase that begins the sentence that modifies the verb. complete subject The Civil Rights Act of 1968dealt with housing and real estate discrimination. simple subject The Civil Rights Act of 1968 dealt with housing and real estate discrimination. Adverb phrase (verb hunt) complete subject From the beginning, the ideals of the women's suffrage movement drew on the liberal notion of the rights of the individual. simple subject From the beginning, the ideals of the women's suffrage movement drew on the liberal notion of the rights of the individual.
The complete predicate of a sentence consists of all the words that are not part of the complete subject. The predicate usually comes after the subject; sometimes, however, part or all of the predicate comes before the subject. This is called an inverted sentence. The simple predicateis the part that says something about what the subject does. It is usually called the verb. This adverb phrase modifies the verb peaked making it part of the complete predicate. In the early decades of the twentieth century, the numbers of child laborers in the U.S. peaked. In the early decades of the twentieth century, the numbers of child laborers in the U.S. peaked. The simple predicate peaked is the action of the numbers. simple Prepositional phrase Prepositional phrase Prepositional phrase predicate At the beginning of the national campaign for child labor laws were many hurdles to overcome. This is an inverted sentence where all prep phrases come before the verb. Remember that subjects cannot be found in a prep phrase; the complete and simple predicate come before the complete and simple subject.
The verb phrase is a verb that is made up of more than one word. The US government willnot purchase goods made by under-aged children. will purchase is a verb phrase. The word not is an adverb and should never be included as part of a verb phrase. In 1938, minimum ages of employment and hours of work for children are regulated by federal law. The child labor movement should have begun much sooner. The words not and never and the contraction –n’tare not verbs. Sometimes it may be difficult to find the subject of a sentence. In such cases, find the verb first and then ask yourself whom or what the verb is referring to. During this project, you may choose any civil rights movement to research. The verb phrase is may choose. Who may choose? You may choose. Don’t forget that pronouns can function as the subject of the sentence.
Compound subjects consists of two or more connected subjects that have the same verb. The parts of the compound subject are most often connected by and and or.Commas are used to separate three or more parts of a compound subject. compound subjects Beggersor indigents were the labels placed on those citizens with disabilities. compound subjects In the early 1970s, menand women with disabilities lobbied Congress to put civil rights language for people with disabilities into the 1972 Rehabilitation Act. compound subjects With this act, full participation, inclusion, and integration of people with disabilities were protected by law.
A compound verbis made up of two or more connected verbs that have the same subject. A connecting word such as and or but is used to join the verbs. subjectverb prepositional phrase verb Native Americans suffer from social and economic problems and struggle with being discriminated against. The conjunction and joins the two verbs suffer and struggle. subject verb adverb verb Native Americans were treated unfairly but fought for their rights by starting the organization AIM, American Indian Movement. The conjunction but joins the two verb were treated and fought. A sentence may even have compound subjects and compound verbs. subject subject verb verb African Americans and other minoritieshave fought and overcome many social injustices.
Kinds of sentences: Declarative Sentence- makes a statement and is always followed by a period. Women’s rights around the world is an important indicator to understand global well-being. Imperative Sentence- gives a command or makes a request and may be followed by a period or exclamation point. Take action to stop discrimination. Interrogative Sentence- asks a question and is always followed by a question mark. How would you feel if someone treated you unfairly based on your gender, ethnicity, age, or religion? Exclamatory Sentence- shows excitement or expresses strong feelings and is followed by an exclamation point. We should fight for justice!
A simple sentence is a group of words that expresses a complete thought and has one subject and one verb. The first National Women's Rights Conventionwas held during 1850 in Massachusetts, attracting more than 1,000 participants. When a group of words looks like a sentence but does not express a complete thought, it is a sentence fragment. This sentence has a dependent clause that contains a subject and verb, but the independent clause doesn’t contain a verb making it a fragment. Dependent clause subject verb Independent clause (When the movementfirst began,) the first National Women’s subject RightsConvention. The independent clause is missing a verb. subject verb
Use a simple three-part test to help you decide whether a word group is a sentence fragmentor a complete sentence: Does the group of words have a subject? Does the words group have a verb? Does the word group express a complete thought? How do I fix sentence fragments? Sometimes a fragment is part of the sentence that comes before or after it; you can correct the fragment by attaching it to the sentence it belongs with: Growing opposition to child labor in the North caused many factories to move to the South. Because labor and the cost of living was cheaper. The word because is a subordinating conjunction that begins a dependent clause. It needs to be attached to the previous sentence (an independent clause) to express a complete thought forming a complex sentence. Corrected sentence Growing opposition to child labor in the North caused many factories to move to the South because labor and the cost of living was cheaper.
A comma splice is where two independent clauses are separated by a comma instead of a period or semicolon. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote that the oppressed people cannot remain oppressed forever, the urge for freedom will eventually come. In order to correct this error, use a period to end the first complete thought, and capitalize the beginning word of the second complete thought. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote that the oppressed people cannot remain oppressed forever.The urge for freedom will eventually come. OR Use a semicolon to join the two related thoughts and DO NOT capitalize the first word of the second complete thought. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote that the oppressed people cannot remain oppressed forever;the urge for freedom will eventually come.
A run-on sentence is actually two or more sentences that run together into one sentence. It is often hard to tell where one idea in a run-on ends and the next one begins. By the 19th century, it was common for people with disabilities to be institutionalized they were looked upon as patients or clients who needed curing. There are two good ways to revise run-on sentences: break the run-on into two complete thoughts or link the two ideas with a comma and a coordinating conjunction (and, but, or). By the 19th century, it was common for people with disabilities to be institutionalized. They were looked upon as patients or clients who needed curing. OR By the 19th century, it was common for people with disabilities to be institutionalized, and they were looked upon as patients or clients who needed curing.
Stringy sentences: for variety, you’ll sometimes want to join sentences and sentence parts with and. If you string many ideas together with and, you create a string sentence that can ramble on and on. They don’t give the reader a chance to pause between ideas. Stringy: Despite changes in rehabilitation and education law, people with disabilities did not achieve broad civil rights until the enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990, and this landmark federal anti-discrimination law ensures equal access to employment opportunities and public accommodations for people with disabilities, and with this act, Congress identified the full participation, inclusion and integration of people with disabilities into society as a national goal. Better: Despite changes in rehabilitation and education law, people with disabilities did not achieve broad civil rights until the enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990. This landmark federal anti-discrimination law ensures equal access to employment opportunities and public accommodations for people with disabilities. With this act, Congress identified the full participation, inclusion and integration of people with disabilities into society as a national goal.
Sentence Combining: Good writers usually use some short sentences, but they don’t use them all of the time. An entire paragraph of short sentences makes the writing sound choppy. The time period was November 1969. Some 200 Native Americans seized an island. It was the abandoned federal penitentiary on Alcatraz Island. This was located in San Francisco Bay. The Native Americans occupied it for 19 months. Indian activists occupied the island to draw attention to conditions on the nation's Indian reservations. the Native Americans said that Alcatraz symbolized conditions on reservations. Now see how the revised paragraph combines some of the short sentences to help eliminate some of the repeated words and ideas. The result is a smoother paragraph with much more variety. In November 1969, some 200 Native Americans seized the abandoned federal penitentiary on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay. For 19 months, Indian activists occupied the island to draw attention to conditions on the nation's Indian reservations. Alcatraz, the Native Americans said, symbolized conditions on reservations.
Sentence Combining by inserting words: You can combine sentences in several different ways by inserting a word or a group of words from one sentence into another sentence. Other times you can combine two related sentences by using a connecting word. Pull a key word from one sentence and insert it into the other sentence. Original: Martin Luther King, Jr. was a civil rights leader. He was an American. Combined: Martin Luther King, Jr. was an American civil rights leader. Sometimes you can just add the key word to the first sentence and drop the rest of the second sentence. Other times you will need to change the form of the key word before you can insert it. Original: He was famous for his brilliant speeches. His fame was international. Combined: He was internationally famous for his brilliant speeches.
Sentence Combining by inserting groups of words: Often, you can combine two related sentences by taking an entire group of words from one sentence and adding to the other sentence. When the group of words is inserted, it adds detail to the information in the first sentence. Original: The Native Americans fought for justice. They fought for justice throughout the 1960’s. Combined: The Native Americans fought for justice throughout the 1960’s. Original: American Indians and Alaskan Natives have yet to be connected to basic telephone networks. American Indians and Alaskan Natives are unable to access the Internet. Combined: American Indians and Alaskan Natives have yet to be connected to basic telephone networks and are thus unable to access the Internet. Original: American Indians are at risk of falling further behind. American Indians are without access to technology. Combined: American Indians without access to technology are at risk of falling further behind.
Sentence Combining: Sometimes you will need to put commas around the group of words you are inserting. Ask yourself whether the group of words renames or explains a noun or pronoun in the sentence. If it does, use a comma or commas to set off the word group from the rest of the sentence. Original: The Trail of Broken Treaties was the November 1972 march on Washington. The march on Washington was an American Indian movement. Combined: The Trail of Broken Treaties was the November 1972 march on Washington, an American Indian Movement. Original: On November 9, 1969, a group of Indian supporters set out in a chartered boat to symbolically claim Alcatraz for the Indian people. The Indian supporters were known as “Indians of All Tribes.” Combined: On November 9, 1969, a group of Indian supporters known as “Indians of All Tribes” set out in a chartered boat to symbolically claim Alcatraz for the Indian people.
Sentence Combining Using Connecting Words (conjunctions): Another way to combine sentences is by using conjunctions that allow you to join closely related sentences and sentence parts. If two sentences have the same subject, you can combine them by making a compound verb. If the sentences have the same verb, you can combine them by making a compound subject. The conjunction you use is important because it tells how the two subjects or verbs are related to one another. Using and to join sentences: Original: Children should have the right to participate in political and legal decisions that affect them. Children should get to live free from hunger, abuse, neglect, and other inhumane conditions. Combined: Children should have the right to participate in political and legal decisions that affect themand should get to live free from hunger, abuse, neglect, and other inhumane conditions. The two original sentences have the same subject; therefore, when combined, a compound verb is created.
Sentence Combining Using Connecting Words (conjunctions): Using but to join contrasting ideas: Original: Children worked in factories. Children made less money than adults. Combined: Children worked in factories but made less money than adults. Using or to show a choice between ideas: Original: Parents had to sign work papers for the kids to work. Grandparents had to sign work papers for the kids to work. Combined: Parents or grandparents had to sign work papers for the kids to work. After sentence combining, be sure to read your new sentence carefully asking yourself the following questions: Is my new sentence clear? Does it make sense? Does it sound better than the two shorter sentences?
Sentence Combining: Joining Sentences for compound and/or complex. Sometimes you may want to combine two related sentences that express equally important ideas. You can do this by using a comma and a conjunction: and, but, or, nor, for, so, yet. The result is a compound sentence. Gender equality furthers the cause of child survival and development for all of society, so the importance of women’s rights and gender equality should not be underestimated. Two independent clauses joined by a conjunction forms a compound sentence. Other times you may want to combine two sentences where one helps explain the other sentence by telling how, where, why, or when. Use a subordinating conjunction (connecting word) for a complex sentence. Original: They had to find a way to earn money that they needed to survive. They had to send their kids to work with the high probability of getting hurt. Combined: They had to find a way to get the money that they needed to survive, even if they had to send their kids to work with the high probability of the kids getting hurt. Some connecting words that you can use are after, although, as, because, before, if, since, so that, until, when, whether, and while. The word that you choose will depend on what you want your sentence to say.
A complex sentencehas at least two parts: one that can stand alone and one that cannot. Independent clauses are complete thoughts containing subjects and verbs that are connected to other independent or dependent clauses by coordinating conjunctions, subordinating conjunctions, or a semicolon. independent clause independent clause coordinating conjunction Mother Jones and the 200 kids marched for Social Rights, and the methods were successful because the congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act. independent clause dependent clause subordinating conjunction Mother Jones and the 200 kids had to march for Social Rights before congress would pass the Fair Labor Standards Act. independent clause independent clause semicolon Mother Jones and the 200 kids marched for Social Rights; the methods were successful because the congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act.
A Dependent Clause contains a subject and verb but does not express a complete thought.Words that introduce dependent clauses are subordinating conjunctions: After I left the ballgame Although the class had already started As the runner crossed the finish line As if I had known the whole time As long as I finish on time As soon as I arrive for practice Because he was allergic to bee stings Before I even knew what happened If I saved my extra change Since I made a good choice So that I would not get lost While I waited for my turn Unless my mom changes her mind Until wecompletely run out When you play in the pouring rain Whenever the snow storm hits Where the street comes to a dead end Wherever we decide to meet Whether it is sweet or sour