basic rules for punctuation

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PUNCTUATION MARKS

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Punctuation depends on sentence structure and the logical order of ideas. The first thing is to know what makes a sentence and how that determines the punctuation to be used.

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What Makes  a Sentence? MY PARENTS AND ME GO FOR A WALK. SUBJECT VERB COMPLEMENT

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PHRASES ARE DIFFERENT FROM SENTENCES BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE A SUBJECT AND A VERB. FOR EXAMPLE: EVERY MORNING, AFTER SOME TIME, DURING THE WAR, AT THE GYM, WHEN THESE PHRASES COME AT THE BEGINNING OF A SENTENCE, THEY END WITH A COMMA, AND THEN COMES THE SUBJECT OF THE SENTENCE. PHRASES GIVE YOU THE CONTEXT FOR WHAT YOU WILL TELL OF THE SUBJECT AND THE VERB OF YOUR SENTENCE. WITH HIS HELP,

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WHAT IS THE SUBJECT, VERB AND COMPLEMENT OF THESE SENTENCES? EVERY MORNING, MY PARENTS AND ME GO FOR A WALK. MOST OF THE TIMES, MY STUDENTS DON’T THINK GRAMMAR IS VERY EASY

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THAT NIGHT, THE MAN BECAUSE HE BUT SHE MADE A DECISION DISCOVERED THE TRUTH, AFTER SHE FINISHED WRITING THE LETTER, NEVER KNEW WHAT HAPPENED. THE MAN TOOK IT TO THE POST OFFICE A SENTENCE CAN BE COMPOSED OF MORE THAN ONE SUBJECT AND ONE VERB.

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BE CAREFUL WHEN YOU HAVE TWO CLAUSES. You use punctuation depending on the order of the clauses WHEN SHE CAME INTO THE OFFICE, THE MAN OPENED HIS EYES. THE MAN OPENED HIS EYES WHEN SHE CAME INTO THE OFFICE. NOTICE THE COMMA

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If Carlos comes to the party, Lisa will be very happy. Other examples with clauses NOTICE THE COMMA IN THE FIRST CLAUSE BUT IF WE INVERT THE ORDER OF THE CLAUSES… Lisa will be very happy if Carlos comes to the party. NO COMMA THIS TIME CLAUSE 1 CLAUSE 2

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Most complex sentences have an independent and a dependent clause. 1. Independent: A clause that can stand by itself and still make sense. An independent clause could be its own sentence, but is often part of a larger structure, combined with other independent clauses and with dependent clauses. Independent clauses are sometimes called essential or restrictive clauses. 2. Dependent: A clause that cannot stand by itself. It depends on something else, an independent clause, for its meaning. A dependent clause trying to stand by itself would be a sentence fragment. Dependent clauses are sometimes called subordinate, nonessential, or nonrestrictive clauses. We will review the different kinds of dependent clauses.

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When JP arrived, all the girls got ready. EXAMPLES. IF YOU SAY THE FIRST CLAUSE, IT SOUNDS INCOMPLETE: WHEN JP ARRIVED…. WHAT?? THIS IS WHY IT IS CALLED DEPENDENT. IF A DEPENDENT CLAUSE BEGINS THE SENTENCE, THERE MUST BE A COMMA BEFORE THE INDEPENDENT CLAUSE. DEPENDENT CLAUSES ARE INTRODUCED BY WHEN WHILE AFTER BEFORE IF

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BEFORE AND BUT OR YET SO JP EXPLAINED THIS TOPIC, HE GAVE US MANY EXAMPLES. HE IS WILLING TO, MOST OF US UNDERSTOOD, USING THEM IS GOING TO BE DIFFICULT. WE WILL NEED TO PRACTICE, JP WILL NEED TO EXPLAIN THIS AGAIN. HE MAY LOSE HIS PATIENCE. PUNCTUATION IS A PROBLEM FOR US, WE’D BETTER PAY ATTENTION. ALWAYS USE A COMMA THE FOLLOWING IF THERE IS A SUBJECT AND A VERB. NOTICE THE SUBJECTS ARE CIRCLED IN RED OTHER CONNECTORS ARE: FOR AND NOR

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YOU CAN REMEMBER THEM EASILY WITH THIS ABBREVIATION F O R A N D N O R B U T O R Y E T S O

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