Grammar Kinds of Sentences

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1 Kinds of Sentences There are four kinds of sentences: declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamatory. 1. A declarative sentence makes a statement. It tells something, states a fact or opinion, or gives information. It ends with a period. Jeremy plays the violin. In my opinion, he plays it beautifully. 2. An interrogative sentence asks a question and ends with a question mark. Interrogative sentences often start with words like: who, what, when, where, why, how, and which. Interrogative sentences often have the verb before the subject, or the subject comes between the helping verb and the main verb. How on earth did you get up there? 3. An imperative sentence gives a request or an order and usually ends with a period. It could also end with an exclamation mark. The subject you is often implied, which means it is not actually used in the sentence but understood to be there. These sentences can be one word long. Run! Go now! Do you homework. 4. An exclamatory sentence expresses strong feeling and ends with an exclamation mark. This is too hard! I give up!

2 Subjects and Predicates Every sentence has a subject and a predicate. Every word in a sentence is either part of the subject or part of the predicate. The subject of a sentence tells whom or what the sentence is about. The simple subject is the main word or phrase that the sentence is about, usually a noun or pronoun. Most simple subjects are just one word, but if the simple subject is a proper noun, then it may be two or more words. The complete subject includes the simple subject and all the words that describe it, usually adjectives and prepositional phrases. In the examples below the simple subject is in bold type and the complete subject is underlined. * The desk in the back of the classroom is quite large. * That tall boy is really good at basketball. He must practice a lot. * Mrs. Brown, our principal, has worked here for over a dozen years. * The students quietly stood in the hallway while their teacher locked the door. * (You) Toss me that towel, please. The predicate tells what the subject is or does. The simple predicate is the verb or verb phrase that tells about the subject. The complete predicate includes the simple predicate and all the words related to the verb, usually beginning with the verb or verb phrase and everything that comes after it, including adverbs and objects. Note that adverbs can come before the verb or verb phrase. In the examples below the simple predicate is in bold type and the complete predicate is underlined. * The desk in the back of the classroom is quite large. * That tall boy is really good at basketball. He must practice a lot. * Mrs. Brown, our principal, has worked here for over a dozen years. * The students quietly stood in the hallway while their teacher locked the door. * (You) Toss me that towel, please.

3 Compound Subjects and Compound Predicates A simple sentence is made up of one complete subject and one complete predicate. Even if the subject is compound or the predicate is compound, it is still a simple sentence. Writing sentences with compound subjects and compound predicates can make your writing smoother to read and clearer for a reader to understand. A compound subject is made up of two or more simple subjects that have the same predicate. You can combine sentences that have the same predicate into one sentence with a compound subject. Use a conjunction such as and or or to join the simple subjects. * Jonathan yelled. Abby yelled. These two simple sentences can be combined into a new simple sentence with a compound subject using the conjunction and. * Jonathan and Abby yelled. A compound predicate is made up of two or more simple predicates that have the same subject. You can combine sentences that have the same subject into one sentence with a compound predicate. Use a conjunction like and or or to join the simple predicates. * Moose barked. Moose howled. These two simple sentences can be combined into a new simple sentence with a compound predicate using the conjunction and. * Moose barked and howled.

4 Conjunctions The words and, or, and but are conjunctions. A conjunction is a word that joins other words or parts of sentences together. * Use and to add information. * Use or to give a choice. * Use but to show contrast. Here are examples of conjunctions joining words together: * Clouds and wind signal a coming storm. * The meteorologist predicted snow or sleet today. * Fog but not rain will make the air moist today. Here are examples of conjunctions joining parts of sentences together: * I saw lightning, and I heard thunder. * The fog might last all morning, or it could burn off by noon. * It will rain, but it won't snow in San Francisco today. These three conjunctions are what we call coordinating conjunctions. They join words, phrases, and sentences (independent clauses) together. Notice that when we join sentences together, we use a comma at the end of the first independent clause and before the conjunction. Other coordinating conjunctions are nor, for, yet, and so.

5 Compound Sentences A compound sentence is made by joining two closely related simple sentences with a comma and a coordinating conjunction. Here are two sentences: I like to read. You like to write. These can be made into a compound sentence using a comma and a conjunction: I like to read, but you like to write. Again, notice that when we join sentences together, we use a comma at the end of the first independent clause (the first sentence) and before the conjunction. You may want to review Compound Subjects and Compound Predicates and note how they are different than compound sentences.

6 Correcting Run-on Sentences A run-on sentence is really two or more sentences that run together without the proper punctuation to join or separate them. A run-on sentence occurs when a writer runs one simple sentence into another without using a comma and a conjunction between them, or when the writer should have separated them into two separate simple sentences. The sentence below is a run-on sentence. * Marco lives on a farm his cousin likes to visit him there. Correct run-on sentences in your writing 1. by inserting a comma and a conjunction to make a compound sentence, or 2. by separating the two simple sentences. * Marco lives on a farm, and his cousin likes to visit him there. * Marco lives on a farm. His cousin likes to visit him there. If the two sentences are closely related to each other, you could also separate them with a semi-colon: * Marco lives on a farm; his cousin likes to visit him there.

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