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Sentence Errors: Charbel – This is for you! Ms. Pennell BHS 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "Sentence Errors: Charbel – This is for you! Ms. Pennell BHS 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sentence Errors: Charbel – This is for you! Ms. Pennell BHS 2013

2 Methodology  I am writing this presentation in response to my students’ questions regarding the study of sentence errors in the classroom.  This presentation will outline some of the common errors made by fledging writers and give advice on how to correct them.

3 Subject Verb Disagreement …  Subject verb disagreement occurs when a subject, who or what the sentence is about, does not agree with the conjugation of the verb in the sentence.  The subject of a sentence must agree with the verb of the sentence:  in number: singular vs. plural  in person: first, second, or third person  It is important to note that there are many possible errors that are associated with subject verb disagreement. Please consult the presentation handed out in class for a more comprehensive explanation.  Below is an example of subject verb disagreement and a possible correction to the error. ERROR: The characters in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night lives in a world that has been turned upside-down. CORRECTION: The characters in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night live in a world that has been turned upside-down.

4 Sentence Fragments …  Fragments are incomplete sentences. Usually, fragments are pieces of sentences that have become disconnected from the main clause. One of the easiest ways to correct them is to remove the period between the fragment and the main clause. Other kinds of punctuation may be needed for the newly combined sentence.  An example of a sentence fragment and a possible correction to a sentence fragment is as follows:  ERROR -- Ran through the woods on a spooky Saturday night.  CORRECTION – The kids ran through the woods on a spooky Saturday night.

5 Pronoun Antecedent Disagreement … A pronoun must agree in number, in person, and in gender to the specific noun (or the antecedent) it is replacing in a sentence. When a pronoun does not agree in person, number, and/or gender, then the sentence error pronoun antecedent disagreement has occurred.

6 Pronoun Antecedent Disagreement … What do I mean when I say that a pronoun has to agree in number? 1. Agree in number  If the pronoun takes the place of a singular noun, you have to use a singular pronoun.  If a student parks a car on campus, he or she has to buy a parking sticker.  (INCORRECT: If a student parks a car on campus, they have to buy a parking sticker.)

7 Pronoun Antecedent Disagreement … What do I mean when I say a pronoun has to agree in person?  Agree in person  If you are writing in the first person (I), don't confuse your reader by switching to the second person (you) or third person (he, she, they, it, etc.). Similarly, if you are using the second person, don't switch to first or third.  When a person comes to class, he or she should have his or her homework ready.  (INCORRECT: When a person comes to class, you should have your homework ready.)

8 Pronoun Antecedent Disagreement … What do I mean when I say a pronoun has to agree with a specific noun preceding it? Refer clearly to a specific noun. Don't be vague or ambiguous. INCORRECT: Although the motorcycle hit the tree, it was not damaged. (Is "it" the motorcycle or the tree?) CORRECTION: The motorcycle was not damaged when it hit the tree. INCORRECT: I don't think they should show violence on TV. (Who are "they"?) CORRECTION: Networks should not promote violence on TV. INCORRECT: Vacation is coming soon, which is nice. (What is nice, the vacation or the fact that it is coming soon?) CORRECTION: I am eagerly and pleasantly anticipating my vacation.

9 Comma Splice …  The comma splice is a very specific error. Unlike a general comma error, a comma splice refers to the joining of two independent clauses with only a comma.  ERROR: Herbie and Gabriel were reading happily at Barnes and Noble, both boys found interesting books to read.  CORRECTION: Herbie and Gabriel were happily reading at Barnes and Noble; both boys found interesting books to read.

10 The Run-On Sentence …  Run-on sentences are sometimes also called fused sentences. This error occurs when there are two or more independent clauses smashed together without any punctuation.  ERROR: The tired baby cried and cried for her frazzled mother to take her home from the store the young mother refused to take the beautiful and tired baby girl home.  CORRECTION: The tired baby cried and cried for her frazzled mother to take her home from the store; the young mother refused to take the beautiful and tired baby girl home.  CORRECTION: The tired baby cried and cried for her frazzled mother to take her home from the store; however, the young mother refused to take the beautiful and tired baby girl home.

11 Verb Tense Disagreement … Verb tense disagreement occurs when a writer uses two or more verb tenses in the same sentence. Writers should choose a verb tense and stick to it to ensure clarity and clear and effective communication.  ERROR: When she is living in Japan, she ate with chopsticks.  CORRECTION: When she lived in Japan, she ate with chopsticks.

12 Comma Error …  A general comma error occurs when a writer sprinkles commas unnecessarily throughout a sentence or when a comma is misplaced in a sentence. This error should not be confused with a comma splice. A comma splice is when a writer decides to join two independent clauses with only a comma.  ERROR: The baker, decided, to bake, an orange infused, chocolate cake.  CORRECTION: The baker decided to bake an orange infused chocolate cake.

13 Error in Verb Usage … Present I drag you drag he/she/it drags we drag you drag they drag Simple past I dragged you dragged he/she/it dragged we dragged you dragged they dragged Present I hang you hang he/she/it hangs we hang you hang they hang Past I hanged; hung you hanged; hung he/she/it hanged; hung we hanged; hung you hanged; hung they hanged; hung An error in verb usage occurs when a writer incorrectly conjugate a verb. This error occurs typically with irregular verbs like drag and hang. ERRORS: I hunged the picture over the door. I drug the garbage can.

14 Rules on Capitalization … Titles of Works Always capitalize the titles of articles, books, magazines, songs, albums, television shows, plays, etc.  This month’s Rolling Stone had a really interesting article on punk music.  The song “No Excuses” is the best grunge song ever.  Don’t capitalize short prepositions or articles (the, an, of, etc.) if they aren’t the first word of the title.  The best Shakespeare play, I think, is Romeo and Juliet.  I’m tired today because I stayed up all night watching The Office.  My favorite book is definitely The Catcher in the Rye. People Always capitalize the names of people.  I think Ryan Gosling is in that movie.  My girlfriend introduced me to her friend Maria.

15 Rules on Capitalization … Capitalize titles, like doctor, professor, and judge, when they refer to a specific person. Don’t capitalize those words when they refer only to an occupation.  He was sentenced to five months’ probation by Judge Karen Wilcke.  The course was taught by Professor Johnson.  When I was a kid, I thought I’d be a doctor, but I became professor instead. Capitalize family relationships only when they are used as part of a person’s title.  Sarah’s Aunt Trudy bought her the ugliest sweater I’ve ever seen.  My mother is named Nancy Barker.

16 Rules on Capitalization … Capitalize the names of political, racial, social, national, civic, and athletic groups.  The local Red Cross is holding a blood drive today.  I love to watch the Chicago White Sox play baseball.  This university has a high population of Asian-American students.

17 Rules on Capitalization …  Places Always capitalize the names of specific places: cities, countries, geographic regions, street names, schools and universities, and landmarks.  She is originally from Cairo, Illinois, but now she’s living in New York City.  On my vacation next week, I’ll get to see Mount Rushmore.  This flight will be my first time flying over the Atlantic Ocean.  When we were kids, we played basketball on Arbor Street.  I’m taking classes right now at Heartland Community College, but I will transfer to Illinois State next year.

18 Rules on Capitalization … Capitalize words that are derived from the names of places, including languages.  My favorite Italian city is Florence.  Celine Dion is my favorite Canadian singer.  I am learning to speak Spanish. Do not capitalize directions or other general geographical words.  The mall is just a little bit south of here.  I think I would enjoy living in the desert.  The state is cracking down on drunk drivers.

19 Rules on Capitalization …  Dates and Events Always capitalize names of months, days of the week, and holidays.  I was sick for nearly the entire month of November.  Jamie isn’t available on Tuesday, so we’ll need to schedule the meeting forWednesday.  My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving, but Valentine’s Day is a close second.

20 Rules on Capitalization … Capitalize the names of historic events.  My research paper is about the Vietnam War.  We will study the Great Depression during this unit. Do not capitalize the names of seasons, unless the season is part of a title.  I love fall because of crisp, cool air.  We are going to bike a lot during summer vacation.  I am taking my last two classes during the Fall 2008 semester.


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