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GRAMMAR BASICS -- TYPES OF SENTENCES

GRAMMAR BASICS -- TYPES OF SENTENCES

Author: DAVID SHAFFER
Description:

1. To identify and define types of sentences: simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex.
2. To identify and define active and passive voices.

Using text and some very entertaining videos, this packet describes the four sentence types, as well as the active and passive voices of verbs.

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Tutorial

TYPES OF SENTENCES

THERE ARE FOUR TYPES OF SENTENCES:

SIMPLE;

COMPOUND;

COMPLEX; and

COMPOUND-COMPLEX.


THERE ARE TWO "VOICES" FOR VERBS:

ACTIVE and PASSIVE

Source: Errors in English and How To Correct Them, by Harry Shaw, 2nd Ed.

WHAT IS A SIMPLE SENTENCE?

A simple sentence is a group of words which consists of a subject (S) and a verb (V) (aka the predicate)and has a complete thought.

This subject-verb combination is also known as a clause (C).

(S+V=C)

 

Some examples, including a familiar little ditty: (S and V are underlined)

Randy smelled peanut butter.                                       Hickory Dickory Dock,

Prince Charles has gray hair.                             The Mouse Ran Up the Clock,

                                                                                          The Clock Struck One,

                                                                                              The Mouse Did Run,

                                                                                            Hickory Dickory Dock 


Source: Mother Goose

DEFINITION OF SIMPLE SENTENCES

Professor Stein, apparently from New Jersey, explains four types of simple sentences:S+V; S+S+V; S+V+V; and S+S+V+V. NOTE THAT HIS QUICK-AND-EASY DEFINITION IS THAT SIMPLE SENTENCES HAVE NO COMMAS.

Source: YouTube

WHAT IS A COMPOUND SENTENCE?

A COMPOUND SENTENCE CONSISTS OF

TWO OR MORE INDEPENDENT CLAUSES,

SEPARATED BY A COMMA AND JOINED BY ONE OF THESE CONJUNCTIONS: for, and, nor, but, or, yet and so.

(ACRONYM:  "F-A-N-B-O-Y-S")

 

EACH CLAUSE IS GRAMMATICALLY CORRECT ON ITS OWN,

AND IS THEREFORE CAPABLE OF STANDING ALONE.

EXAMPLE:  Randy flew across the Atlantic Ocean, and he landed in Ireland.

Source: Errors in English and How To Correct Them, by Harry Shaw, 2nd Ed. AND YouYube

COMPOUND SENTENCES DEFINED video

Professor Josh Stein "The Brightest Star In the Universe," explains the structure of compound sentences, with examples.

Source: YouTube

Complex Sentences

 

We have learned that a compound sentence is two (or more) independent clauses connected with (most often) a "FANBOYS" conjunction. 

complex sentence is one or more independent clauses (IC) and one (or more) dependent clauses (DC), connected by a subordinating conjunction (SC). 

EX: We stayed indoors (IC) since (SC) the day was so unpleasant (DC).

A dependent clause has a subject and verb, but is dependent -- or subordinate-- to another clause to make sense.  The other clause must be independent. And they must be connected with a subordinating conjunction.  There is a video in this packet that lists common subordinating conjunctions.

"Since the day was so unpleasant " doesn't make sense alone, and is therefore dependent on "we stayed indoors," which can stand alone and make sense.

This can be reversed:

Since (SC) the day was so unpleasant (DC), we stayed indoors IC).

"Since the day was so unpleasant" still makes no sense alone, and is therefore dependent on "we stayed indoors," which makes sense alone, and is therefore independent.

A video, next in this packet, has a list of subordinating conjunctions.

Source: The Oxford English Grammar, by Sidney Greenbaum, 1st Ed.; The Elements of Grammar, by Margaret Shertzer, 1st Ed.

COMPLEX SENTENCES video

Since I love these guys and their banter, you have to put up with them again, whilst Prof. Stein ("Best In NJ") explains the structure of a Complex Sentence. Enjoy.

Source: YouTube

COMPOUND-COMPLEX SENTENCES

Quick review:

Compound = IC+Coordinating ("Fanboy") Conjunction+IC.

Complex = IC+Subordinating Conjunction+DC


slap 'em t'gether and whaddya got? Compound-complex. It has a couple independent clauses and a dependent clause.

Compound-Complex formula = IC+CC+IC+SC+DC

EXAMPLE:

John went to school (IC), but (CC) his sister didn't (IC) because (SC) she had a cold (DC).

SIMPLE AS THAT.

Source: Adapted in roughly equal parts from the Prof. Stein videos and Errors in English, 2nd Ed., by Harry Shaw

ACTIVE and PASSIVE VOICE

ANOTHER THING ABOUT VERBS, AND THEN WE'RE FINISHED. 

(not "done." Remember: "Cakes are Done; people are Finished.")

 

VERBS ARE CLASSIFIED AS TO ACTIVE AND PASSIVE "VOICE."

Active Voice is when the subject is doing the action.  EX: "John is dancing."

Passive voice is when the subject is receiving the action.  "The dancing was done by John."

Active: Tom laid a book on the table.

Passive: A book was laid on the table by Tom.

Active: The engineers built a bridge across the river.

Passive: The bridge across the river was built by the engineers.


One more thing: Teachers and professors prefer the ACTIVE voice because it is the stronger, more direct of the two. But occasionally throwing in a sentence using the PASSIVE voice is okay, because it creates sentence variety, another thing teachers and professors like.

Source: Errors in English and How To Correct Them, by Harry Shaw, 2nd Ed., AND The Elements of Grammar, by Margaret Shertzer

VIDEO: ACTIVE AND PASSIVE VOICE

This entertaining video explains active and passive verbs ("voice"). Who is this VEGETA??

Source: YouTube