Friday, August 15, 2014

Vary Sentence Structure

When students write, they must pay attention to several aspects of writing as they read. One of those aspects is sentence structure. Using a variety of sentence structures adds flow and makes writing more appealing. 

This blog post includes free task cards to help students remember to use sentence variety.
Free Varying Sentence Structure Task Cards

The Case for Using Sentence Variety
Why should students be concerned about sentence variety?  Writing clear and cohesive sentences are not only focus points of the new Common Core Standards, it is also a valuable tip that will help students score higher on ACT and SAT exams. Understanding how and when to use different sentence structures not only improves writing, it also helps students understand how authors develop and convey ideas to their readers.

How Authors Use Different Sentence Structures
Varying sentence structures can heighten the tone in an action story.  In informational text, it draws a reader's attention to specific ideas.

In addition to experimenting with different sentence structures, students should analyze the writing structures that authors use.  They can ask questions like:

  • How does the author convey tone in the text?
  • How does the use of this sentence structure (in paragraph 10) help the speaker be more convincing to listeners?
The Common Core Connection
The Common Core English Standards lead students into deeper levels of analysis as they progress into higher grade levels.  While words such as analyze, think about, and compare are used at the lower and middle grade levels, terms such as diction and syntax are directly used at the high school grade levels to address this deeper level of analysis.
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To access close reading task cards from my TpT store, Click Here

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