Start with the MST ( (Main Sentence Trunk ) 5 Criteria for a Sentence: 1.It must begin with a capital. 2.It must contain a noun as the subject. 3.It must contain a verb as the predicate. 4.It must end with punctuation:. ! ? 5.It must express a complete thought.
Common Nouns boy principal park city vampire building Proper Nouns Joey Mrs. Stillman Central Park San Diego Dracula Twin Towers Nouns answer the question Who or What?
Single Subject Pronouns I You He She It Plural Subject Pronouns We You They Single Object Pronouns Me You Him Her It Plural Object Pronouns Us You Them
Run – zip, dart, jog, race, canter, sprint, rush Walk – amble, saunter, hike, parade, march, stride, trudge, stroll, lumber Say – exclaim, state, vocalize, declare, ramble Verbs answer the question Does / Did / Will Do What Action ?
Like top hats and bow ties, Articles are Optional A man jogged. / Mr. Short jogged. An elephant lumbered. / Babar lumbered. The teacher rambled. / Mrs. Hutson rambled.
MST = (Article: A, An, or The) + Noun + Verb.
Use Specific Nouns and Vivid Verbs Use word choice to make even simple sentences
The horse ran. Can become… The majestic chestnut mare galloped.
First, mark the capital by underlining the first letter three times. Second, circle the noun. Next, zigzag the verb by drawing four small triangles under it. Finally, circle the ending punctuation. 4 codes should equal a complete thought. A crocodile slithered.
The crying boy pouted. (Which boy pouted?) The frustrated teacher grimaced. (Which teacher grimaced?) The calm water pooled. (Which body of water pooled?) Code your MSTs / Color your adjectives
When Expanders tell When the action took place. The sea turtle swam. When did the sea turtle swim? After midnight, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam after midnight. (Notice the When Expander can be written Before or After the MST. Recipe for When Expanders: MST + When Expander When Expander, MST
When Signal Words As After Before During Since Until When At On While When phrases As the tide came in After midnight Before the sun rose During the storm Since the beginning of time Until he was safe At the start of the feeding cycle On Sunday While at the island
As the storm set in, the sea turtle swam. After the rain storm, the sea turtle swam. Before she ate, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam during the night. The sea turtle had been swimming since sunrise.
Until she knew she was safe, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam when the whale chased her. At dawn, the sea turtle swam. On the eve of the storm, the sea turtle swam.
During the storm, the turtle swam during the storm. After the rains, the turtle swam after the rains. While sharks slept, the turtle swam while sharks slept. Until she was safe, the turtle swam until she was safe.
Where Expanders tell Where the action took place. The sea turtle swam. Where did the sea turtle swim? Above the coral, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam above the coral. (Notice the Where Expander can be written Before or After the MST. Recipe for Where Expanders: MST + Where Expander Where Expander, MST
Above Across Along Against Around Before Behind Below Beneath Down From Inside Near On Outside Over Past Toward Under Upon
along the shore against the current around the island before the great reef behind the sail boat upon the rocks toward the bay
The sea turtle swam against the current. The sea turtle swam outside the bay. The sea turtle swam past the ship. Beneath the ship’s hull, swam the sea turtle. Around the island, the sea turtle swam.
Along the reef, the turtle swam along the reef. Near the boat, the turtle swam near the boat. Over the wave, the turtle swam over the wave. Upon the tide, the turtle swam upon the tide. Recipe Reminder: MST + Where Action Expander Where Action Expander, MST
Why Expanders tell Why the action took place. The sea turtle swam. Why did the sea turtle swim? To avoid the whale, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam because she needed to reach shore. (Notice the Why Expander can be written Before or After the MST. Recipe for Why Expanders: MST + Why Expander Why Expander, MST
Why Signal Words Because Since So that To + action verb In order to Why Phrases because he was tired since she had to make up for time lost so that she could lay her eggs to reach shore in order to survive (to survive…)
In order to find her mate, the turtle swam. The turtle swam since she had to lay her eggs.
To find some food, the turtle swam to find some food. Since he was hungry, the turtle swam since he was hungry. So that he could eat, the turtle swam so that he could eat Recipe Reminder: MST + Why Action Expander Why Action Expander, MST
Yes, we can start a sentence with because If We follow it with an MST. Because she needed a place to lay her eggs, the turtle swam. (This is a complete sentence.) “Because she needed a place to lay her eggs” is NOT a complete sentence. It is a FRAGMENT - a piece of a sentence.
Because she was a fast swimmer, the sea turtle escaped because she was a fast swimmer. Because she was able to hide, the sea turtle escaped because she was able to hide. Because the ocean coral disguised her, the sea turtle escaped because the ocean coral disguised her.
Actually, all Action Expanders are fragments. Each Expander is added to an already complete, simple sentence. So, make sure you follow or precede your Expander with an MST. MST + Action Expander or Action Expander, MST
Which of these is a fragment? 1. Because I want to. 2. Around the road and through the tunnel. 3. When she was biking. 4. He ran. 5. Because she was tired, she took a nap.
How Expanders tell How the Who / What acted. The sea turtle swam. How did the sea turtle swim? Quickly, the sea turtle swam. The sea turtle swam quickly. (Notice the How Expander can be written Before or After the MST. Recipe for When Expanders: MST + How Expander How Expander, MST
Like the bright sun rising over the east, Lilly awoke with a great big smile. Leo moved through the grass like a cat. David ran to the cafeteria as quickly as a bunny. As gently as a butterfly, Flora fluttered to her desk.
Gently, the sea turtle laid her eggs gently. Sadly, the sea turtle swam away sadly. Like a small boat setting sail, the sea turtle swam toward the rising sun like a small boat setting sail. Comma after Before Expanders Period at sentence’s end.
Condition Expanders tell what the situation is regarding the action. Even though the sea turtle swam quickly, she was unable to escape the shark. (What was the sea turtle’s situation?) She couldn’t swim faster than her predator. (Notice the Condition Expander can be written Before or After the MST. Condition Expander, MST MST + Condition Expander
Although Though If Even if Even though Unless Despite In spite of regardless
Although the sea was rough, the sea turtle was able to reach the shore. If the sea turtle were any less determined, she would never be able to swim so many miles. Despite the cold water, turtle babies are able to protect themselves with their thick skin. Regardless of the risk, female sea turtles trudge along the shore to lay their eggs.
In spite of the oil spill, the sea turtle was able to find fresh sea weed in spite of the oil spill. Even though people are more careful about protecting the ocean, the creatures of the sea still remain in danger even though people are now more careful about protecting the ocean.
After the storm, the sea turtle swam to shore in order to lay her eggs. (Code and name the Expanders) When she had laid all her eggs, the sea turtle waddled back into the sea even though a storm was fast approaching. (Code and name the Expanders.)
Different sentence beginnings. Only repeat beginnings for intentional effect. (Example: He was a stressed out guy. He was a teacher.) Varied sentence lengths. Count totals of words in each sentence. Make sure you have some long, languid sentences (30 words or more), some short power sentences (one to three or four words long, and some in between sentences. Keep sentences interesting by combing action expanders together in several sentences.
On the eve of a menacing storm, a large sea turtle crawled from the blue frothy waves toward the sandy beach. Flump. Flump. Flump. Flump. She scratched her fins into the sand to raise her enormous form up the bank. As she lay her eggs, she heard human voices. She knew she must cover her eggs well in order for them to go undiscovered and unharmed.
Female sea turtles live in the sea but must come to shore to lay their eggs in the sand. Mother sea turtles choose the dead of night to crawl onto the shore and often amble laboriously over several feet of sand in order to lay their eggs in a safe place along the shore. Regardless of the care she shows in depositing her eggs, only one or two out of the hundred- egg batch will live to adulthood.
Onomatopoeia What goes … Whoosh Hissssss Bang Grrrr Thump Whack
Oh surprise"Oh! You scared me!" pain"Oh! I feel sick." Sarcasm or request“Oh, please!” Ouch pain"Ouch! That hurts!"
Ah pleasure"Ah, that chocolate is so good." understanding"Ah, now I see." Hey attention"Hey! Watch out!" surprise, joy"Hey! What a great idea!"
Hmm hesitation, doubt or disagreement “Hmm. I’m not so sure.” Wow! Surprise “Wow! That’s interesting!”