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5.4 Choosing Punctuation for Effect


There is not always a single correct way to punctuate a sentence. There are, for example, a great many ways to combine two independent clauses to make a coordinated complex clause.


Recall that an independent clause is a clause that has a subject, and you can use the Tag Question test (Lesson 2.1) and the Subject-Auxiliary Inversion test (Lesson 2.2) to find the subject of the independent clause.


Now, let’s take two independent clauses:


            I went to the store.  I forgot to buy bread.


And combine them into a single sentence.


There are many correct ways to do it. Here are just a few.


            I went to the store, but I forgot to buy bread.

            I went to the store; however, I forgot to buy bread.

            I went to the store; I forgot to buy bread.


Discuss how the various ways of punctuating convey different meaning and focus.


key words: punctuation, commas, meaning, semicolon


CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.3b Choose punctuation for effect 

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.1a Explain the function of conjunctions, prepositions, and interjections in general and their function in particular sentences. 

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.3a Expand, combine, and reduce sentences for meaning, reader/listener interest, and style.  


Here is this lesson as a pdf.


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