Lesson Plan

Writing More Complex Sentences

Students will become sentence construction gurus as they learn to craft more sophisticated sentences. Specifically, young writers will use subordinating conjunctions to combine dependent and independent clauses to craft complex sentences.
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Learning Objectives

Students will be able to create more complex sentences by learning about independent and dependent clauses and how to use subordinating conjunctions to combine them.


(5 minutes)
  • Write the list of common subordinating conjunctions on the board: After Although As As soon as Because Before Unless While
  • Explain that as students get to be more sophisticated writers their sentences will become more complex. For example, a first grader might write: I will go to the park.
  • Tell students that they can add clauses, or parts of a sentence, onto another sentence. Discuss real-life examples of how we add smaller things onto bigger, more stable things. Some examples: An older child giving a 4 year old a piggy back ride, snapping a smaller Lego onto a big Lego, adding meatballs to spaghetti, or hooking a trailer onto the back of a truck.
  • Explain that subordinating conjunctions (like the ones on the board) help writers glue clauses - or add-ons - to a complete sentence to make it more complex. Subordinating conjunctions can be single words or phrases that indicate time, place, or cause and effect. Tell them that this is a short list and there are many more.