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Sentences:Simple,Compound,andComplex name:_______________________

Acommonweaknessinwritingisthelackofvariedsentences.Becomingawareofthree
generaltypesofsentencessimple,compound,andcomplexcanhelpyouvarythesentences
inyourwriting.
Themosteffectivewritingusesavarietyofthesentencetypesexplainedbelow.

1.SimpleSentences
Asimplesentencehasthemostbasicelementsthatmakeitasentence:asubject,averb,and
acompletedthought.
Examplesofsimplesentencesincludethefollowing:
1. Joewaitedforthetrain.
2. "Joe"=subject,"waited"=verb
3. MaryandSamanthaarrivedatthebusstationbeforenoonandleftonthebusbeforeI
arrived.
4. "MaryandSamantha"=compoundsubject,"arrived"and"left"=compoundverb
Tip:Theuseofcompoundsubjects,compoundverbs,prepositionalphrases(suchas"atthe
busstation"),andotherelementshelplengthensimplesentences,butsimplesentencesoften
areshort.Theuseoftoomanysimplesentencescanmakewriting"choppy"andcanprevent
thewritingfromflowingsmoothly.
Asimplesentencecanalsobereferredtoasanindependentclause.Itisreferredtoas
"independent"because,whileitmightbepartofacompoundorcomplexsentence,itcanalso
standbyitselfasacompletesentence.

2.CompoundSentences
Acompoundsentencereferstoasentencemadeupoftwoindependentclauses(orcomplete
sentences)connectedtooneanotherwithacoordinatingconjunction.Coordinating
conjunctionsareeasytorememberifyouthinkofthewords"FANBOYS":
ForAndNorButOrYetSo
Examplesofcompoundsentencesincludethefollowing:
1. IlookedforMaryandSamanthaatthebusstation,buttheyarrivedatthestationbefore
noonandleftonthebusbeforeIarrived.
2. MaryandSamanthaarrivedatthebusstationbeforenoon,andtheyleftonthebus
beforeIarrived.
3. MaryandSamanthaleftonthebusbeforeIarrived,soIdidnotseethematthebus
station.
Tip:Coordinatingconjunctionsareusefulforconnectingsentences,butcompoundsentences
oftenareoverused.Whilecoordinatingconjunctionscanindicatesometypeofrelationship
betweenthetwoindependentclausesinthesentence,theysometimesdonotindicatemuchof
arelationship.Theword"and,"forexample,onlyaddsoneindependentclausetoanother,
withoutindicatinghowthetwopartsofasentencearelogicallyrelated.Toomanycompound
sentencesthatuse"and"canweakenwriting.

3.ComplexSentences
Acomplexsentenceismadeupofanindependentclauseandoneormoredependent
clausesconnectedtoit.Adependentclauseissimilartoanindependentclause,orcomplete
sentence,butitlacksoneoftheelementsthatwouldmakeitacompletesentence.
Examplesofdependentclausesincludethefollowing:
becauseMaryandSamanthaarrivedatthebusstationbeforenoon
whilehewaitedatthetrainstation
aftertheyleftonthebus
Dependentclausessuchasthoseabovecannotstandaloneasasentence,buttheycanbe
addedtoanindependentclausetoformacomplexsentence.
Dependentclausesbeginwithsubordinatingconjunctions.Belowaresomeofthemost
commonsubordinatingconjunctions:
after although as because before eventhough if since
though unless until when whenever whereas wherever while
Acomplexsentencejoinsanindependentclausewithoneormoredependentclauses.
Thedependentclausescangofirstinthesentence,followedbytheindependentclause,asin
thefollowing:
Tip:Whenthedependentclausecomesfirst,acommashouldbeusedtoseparatethetwo
clauses.
1. BecauseMaryandSamanthaarrivedatthebusstationbeforenoon,Ididnotseethemat
thestation.
2. Whilehewaitedatthetrainstation,Joerealizedthatthetrainwaslate.
3. Aftertheyleftonthebus,MaryandSamantharealizedthatJoewaswaitingatthetrain
station.

Createthreesentences,onesimplesentence,onecompoundsentence,onecomplexsentence.
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2.________________________________________________________________________
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3.________________________________________________________________________
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