Using Complete Sentences
Tutor: First, make sure that all your sentences are complete sentences and not fragments. Of course, there should be a period at the end of each sentence. If you need help with this, here is an exercise on sentences and fragments.
Slide 2 – Sentences and Fragments
A complete sentence must have at least one independent clause. (It may have 2 or more clauses.) Remember that a clause must have both a subject and a verb.
Sentence fragments are pieces of sentences. They are not complete sentences, so they cannot stand alone.
saw the whole movie last night (no subject)
cars that cost too much (no main verb)
the lady who helped me (no main verb)
Each of these fragments can be changed into a complete sentence by adding the necessary missing structure.
Fragment: saw the whole movie last night
Sentence: Tom saw the whole movie last night. (subject added)
Fragment: cars that cost too much
Sentence: We don’t like cars that cost too much. (subject added)
Fragment: the lady who helped me
Sentence: The lady who helped me works in the bank. (main verb added)
Clauses may be independent or dependent. Independent clauses can stand alone.
Sally went home.
Bill crashed his car into a tree.
We will graduate next year.
Every sentence must have an independent clause.
Dependent clauses cannot stand alone. They have subjects and verbs, but they must be used with an independent clause in a sentence.
Although Sally went home . . .
Because Bill crashed his car into a tree . . .
If we graduate next year . . .
Note that these are not complete sentences; they are fragments.
Each of these fragments can be changed into a complete sentence by adding an independent clause.
Fragments: Although Sally went home . . .
Sentence: Although Sally went home, she wasn’t happy about it.
Fragment: Because Bill crashed his car into a tree . . .
Sentence: Because Bill crashed his car into a tree, the police came.
Fragment: If we graduate next year . . .
Sentence: If we graduate next year, we will start looking for jobs.
On the next 10 slides, decide if each group of words is a sentence fragment or a complete sentence.
going home after a long day
The correct answer is sentence fragment.
Slides 9-18 – Multiple Choice Activity
Slide 19 – Summary Slide