Basic sentence construction is something learned in beginning English language courses; however, as life happens and time goes by, many of these first learned English fundamentals begin to elude us. After a quick review, though, it usually all comes back, and good sentence construction becomes a bit easier to put into practice on a daily basis.
- A basic sentence is a complete thought or idea–subject + predicate. It's also known as a simple sentence.
- Subject (Noun Phrase)–One of two main parts of a sentence containing the subject noun or a pronoun–a person, place or thing–often accompanied by modifiers. Therefore, the noun or pronoun is who or what the sentence is about.
- Predicate–One of two main parts of a sentence containing the verb, objects, or phrases governed by the verb.
- A phrase is a cluster of connected words that do not form a complete idea or sentence.
- A clause consists of a subject and a predicate. It can either be an independent clause (simple sentence), or it can be a dependent clause that relies on an independent clause to form a complete sentence.
- A simple sentence contains a subject and a predicate. It communicates one complete idea as an independent clause. It's a complete sentence.
- A compound sentence is the logical combination of two complete thoughts or independent clauses to form one sentence. It is usually linked by a coordinating conjunction or a semicolon, but subordinating conjunctions used in a complex sentence can be used as coordinators as well to form a compound sentence.
- A complex sentence includes a dependent clause linked to an independent clause by a subordinating conjunction of some kind to form a complete sentence.
Have we jogged your memory yet? If not, don't worry–this section contains explanations and examples of sentence construction in action:
For more information on pre-writing, download the full-text PDF document and go to:
- Sentence Construction.....page 16
- What is a sentence?.........page 17
- Sentence Building Block................................page 17
- Sentence Types...............page 18
- Sentence Expansion........page 18
- Combining Sentences Coordination....................page 18
- Sentence Coordination....page 18
- Sentence Suboordination................page 19