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					A crash course in…
A crash course in…


     COMMAS
        and
   SEMI-COLONS
First…


    …commas
How many people feel totally sure they
know when and where to use commas?
How many people feel totally sure they
know when and where to use commas?


    Okay, what are some of the rules we already
    know about commas?
How many people feel totally sure they
know when and where to use commas?


    Okay, what are some of the rules we already
    know about commas?


    Alright, onto the official stuff…
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling,
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling, snatching

  hats off students’ heads,
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling, snatching

  hats off students’ heads, and giving tests.
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling, snatching

  hats off students’ heads, and giving tests.
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling, snatching

  hats off students’ heads, and giving tests.



         You may have learned this one is optional.
COMMAS #1: Use commas TO SEPARATE
THREE OR MORE ITEMS IN A SERIES.

Example:
  Mr. McEvoy’s favorite pastimes are yelling, snatching

  hats off students’ heads, and giving tests.



         You may have learned this one is optional.
         Use it, otherwise things tend to glom together.
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Not like this:
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Not like this:

  She decided to take her backpack, her pet poodle to

  the beach with her.
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Not like this:

  She decided to take her backpack, her pet poodle to

  the beach with her.
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Not like this:

  She decided to take her backpack, her pet poodle to

  the beach with her.

To compose this sentence properly, you
need a conjunction.
Common Error: Only use commas
between three or more items in a series.
Not like this:

  She decided to take her backpack, her pet poodle to

  the beach with her.

To compose this sentence properly, you
need a conjunction.
  She decided to take her backpack and her pet poodle

  to the beach with her.
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud,
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy,
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.

Like this:
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.

Like this:
  When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

  loud,
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.

Like this:
  When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

  loud, jump for joy,
Also, when you DO have three or more
objects in a series, don’t forget that
conjunction before the last object.
Not like this:

 When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

 loud, jump for joy, have a big party.

Like this:
  When I finally get into college I’m going to scream out

  loud, jump for joy, and have a big party.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Wait, wait, wait… what’s an independent
clause?
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Wait, wait, wait… what’s an independent
clause?
An independent clause = a group of words
that contain a subject, verb, and express a
complete thought.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Wait, wait, wait… what’s an independent
clause?
An independent clause = a group of words
that contain a subject, verb, and express a
complete thought. (Basically, it could
stand alone as a sentence.)
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Example:
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Example:
  He finished school early, so he went home and took a

  long nap.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Example:
  He finished school early, so he went home and took a

  long nap.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Example:
  He finished school early, so he went home and took a

  long nap.

Note, not:
  He finished school early, he went home and took a

  long nap.
COMMAS #2: Use a comma plus one of
these coordinating conjunctions (and, but,
for, or, nor, yet, so) BETWEEN TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES.

Example:
  He finished school early, so he went home and took a

  long nap.

Note, not:
  He finished school early, he went home and took a

  long nap.
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.

Examples:
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.

Examples:
  Because she forgot to study,
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.

Examples:
  Because she forgot to study, Wendy didn’t do so well

  on the test.
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.

Examples:
  Because she forgot to study, Wendy didn’t do so well

  on the test.

  Running down the street chasing after her,
COMMAS #3: Use a comma AFTER AN
INTRODUCTORY PHRASE IN A
SENTENCE.

Examples:
  Because she forgot to study, Wendy didn’t do so well

  on the test.

  Running down the street chasing after her, he

  suddenly realized how silly he looked.
COMMAS #4: Use commas to SET OFF
PARENTHETICAL (NON-ESSENTIAL)
PHRASES.
COMMAS #4: Use commas to SET OFF
PARENTHETICAL (NON-ESSENTIAL)
PHRASES.

Examples:
COMMAS #4: Use commas to SET OFF
PARENTHETICAL (NON-ESSENTIAL)
PHRASES.

Examples:

  Tuesday, which happens to be my birthday, is the only
  day I’m available to meet.
COMMAS #4: Use commas to SET OFF
PARENTHETICAL (NON-ESSENTIAL)
PHRASES.

Examples:

  Tuesday, which happens to be my birthday, is the only
  day I’m available to meet.


  This restaurant has a nice atmosphere. The food, on
  the other hand, is rather bland.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.

  The relentless, powerful rays of the sun beat down on
  them from above.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.

  The relentless, powerful rays of the sun beat down on
  them from above.

  Note: If the sentence doesn’t make sense when you
  swap the two adjectives, they’re not coordinate.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.

  The relentless, powerful rays of the sun beat down on
  them from above.

  Note: If the sentence doesn’t make sense when you
  swap the two adjectives, they’re not coordinate.

  She dove into the deep blue sea.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.

  The relentless, powerful rays of the sun beat down on
  them from above.

  Note: If the sentence doesn’t make sense when you
  swap the two adjectives, they’re not coordinate.

  She dove into the blue deep sea.
COMMAS #5: Use commas to SEPARATE
COORDINATE ADJECTIVES THAT
DESCRIBE THE SAME NOUN.

Examples:
  He was a difficult, stubborn child.

  The relentless, powerful rays of the sun beat down on
  them from above.

  Note: If the sentence doesn’t make sense when you
  swap the two adjectives, they’re not coordinate.

  She dove into the blue deep sea.
COMMAS #6: Use commas to INDICATE A
PAUSE OR SHIFT.
COMMAS #6: Use commas to INDICATE A
PAUSE OR SHIFT.

Examples:
COMMAS #6: Use commas to INDICATE A
PAUSE OR SHIFT.

Examples:
  He was merely ignorant, not stupid.
COMMAS #6: Use commas to INDICATE A
PAUSE OR SHIFT.

Examples:
  He was merely ignorant, not stupid.

  The speaker seemed innocent, even gullible.
COMMAS #7: Use commas to SET APART
GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES, ITEMS IN
DATES, AND ADDRESSES.
COMMAS #7: Use commas to SET APART
GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES, ITEMS IN
DATES, AND ADDRESSES.

Examples:
COMMAS #7: Use commas to SET APART
GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES, ITEMS IN
DATES, AND ADDRESSES.

Examples:
  Salem, Massachusetts is where Hawthorne lived.
COMMAS #7: Use commas to SET APART
GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES, ITEMS IN
DATES, AND ADDRESSES.

Examples:
  Salem, Massachusetts is where Hawthorne lived.

  July 4, 1976 was a momentous date in our nation’s
  history.
COMMAS #7: Use commas to SET APART
GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES, ITEMS IN
DATES, AND ADDRESSES.

Examples:
  Salem, Massachusetts is where Hawthorne lived.

  July 4, 1776 was a momentous date in our nation’s
  history.

  What building is at 75 Broad Street, New York, NY?
And now…


      …semicolons
How many people feel totally sure they
know when and where to use semicolons?
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Example:
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Example:

  I am going home; I intend to stay there.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Example:

  I am going home; I intend to stay there.

  It rained heavily during the morning; we managed to
  have field day anyway.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Example:

  I am going home; I intend to stay there.

  It rained heavily during the morning; we managed to
  have field day anyway.


  This could be a complete sentence; this could be
  another one.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Remember, if you add a conjunction (and,
but, for, or, nor, yet, so) you have to use a
comma, not a semicolon.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Remember, if you add a conjunction (and,
but, for, or, nor, yet, so) you have to use a
comma, not a semicolon.
  He hit the ball far; so he ran to third base.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Remember, if you add a conjunction (and,
but, for, or, nor, yet, so) you have to use a
comma, not a semicolon.
  He hit the ball far; so he ran to third base.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Remember, if you add a conjunction (and,
but, for, or, nor, yet, so) you have to use a
comma, not a semicolon.
  He hit the ball far; so he ran to third base.


  He hit the ball far, so he ran to third base.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Also remember, if the two clauses aren’t
independent (can’t stand alone as their
own sentences) they must be linked by a
comma.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Also remember, if the two clauses aren’t
independent (can’t stand alone as their
own sentences) they must be linked by a
comma.
  We were forced to surrender; having suffered many
  losses.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Also remember, if the two clauses aren’t
independent (can’t stand alone as their
own sentences) they must be linked by a
comma.
  We were forced to surrender; having suffered many
  losses.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Also remember, if the two clauses aren’t
independent (can’t stand alone as their
own sentences) they must be linked by a
comma.
  We were forced to surrender; having suffered many
  losses.

  We were forced to surrender, having suffered many
  losses.
Semicolons: Use semicolons to LINK TWO
INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (WITHOUT
USING ANY CONNECTING WORDS).

Overall, treat a semicolon as if it were a
weak period, not a strong comma. Do not
use a semicolon where you would not use
a period.

				
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