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Commas and Sentence Parts: Writing Skills Success Practice Exercises

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Updated on Aug 25, 2011

Review the lesson for Commas and Sentence Parts: Writing Skills Success Study Guide.

Practice Exercises

Practice Exercise: Commas Following Introductory Words, Phrases, and Clauses

Choose the correctly written sentence from each of the following pairs. Answers are provided at the end.

    1. Content for the first time in his life, Bryce returned to school.
    2. Content for the first time in his life Bryce returned to school.
    1. After eating the train conductor finished his scheduled route and headed back to the train yard.
    2. After eating, the train conductor finished his scheduled route and headed back to the train yard.
    1. I will never forget this moment, as long as I live.
    2. I will never forget this moment as long as I live.
    1. By the time we finally made up our minds, the contract had been awarded to someone else.
    2. By the time we finally made up our minds the contract had been awarded to someone else.
    1. Indignant, Mr. Caster left the restaurant without leaving a tip.
    2. Indignant Mr. Caster left the restaurant without leaving a tip.
    1. Wayne was delighted when he found out he'd been awarded the leading role in the show.
    2. Wayne was delighted, when he found out he'd been awarded the leading role in the show.
    1. By designing the program ourselves, we saved a great deal of expense.
    2. By designing the program ourselves we saved a great deal of expense.
    1. Weeping Wanda gently wiped her eyes while adsorbed in her favorite opera.
    2. Weeping, Wanda gently wiped her eyes while adsorbed in her favorite opera.
    1. Dripping with water from head to toe, Angie climbed the bank of the river.
    2. Dripping with water from head to toe Angie climbed the bank of the river.
    1. The company honored its oldest employee at the annual meeting.
    2. The company honored its oldest employee, at the annual meeting.

Practice Exercise: Subordinate Clauses

Each of the following sentences contains a subordinate clause. These are highlighted for you. If the clause is restrictive, or essential, write R in the box at the right. If the clause is nonrestrictive, or nonessential, put N in the box and set the clause off with commas. Answers are at the end.

11. Cheryl my college roommate sent me a postcard from Mexico.
12. My grandfather who was born in Berlin speaks with a German accent.
13. James who is very shy had a great deal of trouble with his first speech.
14. All employees who have put in more than 10 hours of overtime this week may take this Friday off.
15. People who are born on February 29 grow old more slowly than the rest of us.
16. Animals that have backbones are called vertebrates.
17. Nicotine which is present in tobacco products is a powerful poison.
18. Many Scandinavian names end with -sen or -son both of which mean son of.
19. We live on Fleur Drive which is right next to the airport.
20. Mrs. Olson is not a teacher who takes homework lightly.

Answers

  1. a.
  2. b.
  3. b.
  4. a.
  5. a.
  6. a.
  7. a.
  8. b.
  9. a.
  10. a.
  11. N. Cheryl, my college roommate, sent me a postcard from Mexico.
  12. N. My grandfather, who was born in Berlin, speaks with a German accent.
  13. N. James, who is very shy, had a great deal of trouble with his first speech.
  14. R. All employees who have put in more than 10 hours of overtime this week may take this Friday off.
  15. R. No commas are needed.
  16. R. No commas are needed.
  17. N. Nicotine, which is present in tobacco products, is a powerful poison.
  18. N. Many Scandinavian names end with -son or -sen, both of which mean son of.
  19. N. We live on Fleur Drive, which is right next to the airport.
  20. R. No commas are needed.
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