A statement has to have certain parts present and accounted for in order to be a true sentence. Subject? Check. Verb? Check. Begins with a capital? Check. Ends with a mark? Check! Teach your student all about what goes into complete sentences with our worksheets, activities, and lesson plans. Once they give it a few tries, complete sentences will be completely easy!
The sentence is the foundation of writing. It represents the smallest complete thought. A sentence can be a simple two word clause or a several clause compound sentence. As long as it contains a main clause it is considered a complete sentence.
A sentence must contain several things in order to be considered complete:
A complete sentence must begin with a capital letter.
A complete sentence must end with an ending punctuation mark; a period, a question mark, or an exclamation mark.
A complete sentence must be comprised of at least one complete clause.
Ranked just under the sentence in grammatical hierarchy, a clause represents the main idea of the sentence. A complete clause contains a noun or subject, a verb or predicate, and must represent a complete thought.
Without the main clause in the sentence, even if it begins with a capital and ends in an appropriate punctuation mark, the sentence is considered a fragment. Fragments can often be identified because they are what is called a dependent clause. In order to be complete, these clauses would be joined to an independent clause using what is called a subordinating conjunction. Some examples of subordinating conjunctions are the following: because, since, though, that, which.
Many times the sentence fragment will already have one of these subordinating conjunctions in place but will be missing the independent clause required to complete the thought. Practicing with the resources provided by Education.com can help students remember the pieces required so they will be able to ensure their sentences are complete.