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The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College The Grammar Business Part Two 1. Sorting Out Full Stops
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 2 Perhaps the most common uncertainty in writing is Where and when to insert a full stop It ought to be easy It’s not that easy Why?
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 3 When you’re talking, you can (generally) be understood because you pause between groups of words you use your hands and/or face to emphasise meaning your voice goes up or down at certain stages e.g. up at the end of a question
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 4 So how do you make sense on paper? you use a written code it’s called ‘punctuation’ the full stop is probably the most important item in this code
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 5 But one thing to remember - if you use bullet points like the points on this slide you don’t need to put a full stop at the end of each point but in ordinary writing, you DO!
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 6 Think of a sentence as a string of meaning you know you’ve come to the end of the string when you reach the full stop you don’t insert the full-stop until the meaning has fully arrived
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 7 But, remember there are actually three types of full stop The ordinary full stop - a dot the question mark (?) the exclamation mark (!) and, in some kinds of writing, sentences can trail away in a set of dots like this….
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 8 Each sentence has only ONE full stop. You can’t have a question mark followed by a full stop an exclamation mark followed by a full stop an exclamation mark followed by a question mark (unless you’re writing in a cartoon or comic) and the full stop, whichever kind it is, will be followed by a new sentence and a capital letter
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 9 Look at the confusion when you have no full stops Mary knew what to do straight away her car was at the garage she had no other way to get to work what else could she do she simply had to ask Gordon he had given her lifts before he had a nice new car she picked up the phone she smiled
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 10 Isn’t it better this way? Mary knew what to do straight away. Her car was at the garage. She had no other way to get to work. What else could she do? She simply had to ask Gordon. He had given her lifts before. He had a nice new car. She picked up the phone. She smiled.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 11 There’s just one problem I sorted out that Mary & Gordon piece by inserting full stops Some of you would have used commas in some of the places where I used full stops How do you know what’s correct?
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 12 There are two ways of knowing 1.By instinct 2.By looking at the parts of speech carefully
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 13 On balance, instinct is what you want, but if your instinct is not very good - yet - a simple sentence will normally have at least a subject (a noun or pronoun) and a verb a new sentence will have a new subject and a new verb so the shortest type of sentence you’re likely to find is “She smiled.”
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 14 Back to Mary and Gordon. I’ve picked out the subjects in blue and the verbs in red Mary knew what to do straight away. Her car was at the garage. She had no other way to get to work. What else could she do? She simply had to ask Gordon. He had given her lifts before. He had a nice new car. She picked up the phone. She smiled.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 15 Most sentences actually have a subject, a verb and an object too The cat sat on the mat The cat is the subject the mat is the object sat is the verb When you get to the mat, you put a full stop. It’s the end of that sentence string.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 16 You can join two or more sentences by using a conjunction like and but because since
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 17 So four sentences can become one like this The cat sat on the mat because the dog was in her basket and the dog was in the basket because it was trying to annoy the cat.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 18 But NOT like this The cat sat on the mat, the dog was in her basket, the dog was in the basket, it was trying to annoy the cat.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 19 Try it. Insert one full stop into the following. Mary had phoned Gordon this was a stupid thing to do. Gordon had never liked Mary she was the sort of woman he loathed. Mary had a little lamb also she possessed a large sheep.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 20 Try some more on Handout One
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 21 Common Errors Using ‘then’ or ‘however’ to join two sentences. These words are not conjunctions - they start a new sentence Starting new sentences with conjunctions like ‘and’ or ‘but’. This is grammatically incorrect - you only do it for dramatic effect.
The Grammar Business © 2001 Glenrothes College 22 Try correcting the punctuation on Handout Two Good luck!
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