Lesson: Grammar: Independent and Dependent Clauses 1

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Lesson Objective

Focus: Identifying words and phrases that set-up for an independent clause

Lesson Plan

  • Edward Brooke Logo
    We are going to learn about independent and dependent clauses (Hopefully, someone will remember what these are. Review the definitions of dependent and independent clauses. They can use their word study.)
    • Examples
  1. The scholar studied his vocabulary words every night. (independent)
  2. Chirping birds woke me up in the early morning. (independent)
  3. Even though the water was freezing  (dependent)
  4. According to the blurb  (dependent)
  • Today, we are going to continue our discussion about these clauses, but we’re going to be focusing on dependent clauses.
  • We know that a dependent clause is a clause that can’t stand alone, and when we hear a dependent clause we know that it sounds unfinished…like something is missing. Our job today is to identify the words and phrases that usually come at the beginning of dependent clauses. When writers use these specific words at the start of their sentences, it is a signal that they are writing a sentence with a dependent clause.
  • Show scholars the list of words that signal a dependent clause. Read it together.
  • Have students write down the words in their notebooks.
  • Now that we know the words that are necessary for writing a dependent clause, we need to begin to identify dependent clauses in sentences.
  • Hand out worksheet. Read the directions together.
  • Remember, a clause is a group of words that have a subject and predicate, but can’t stand alone. We need to keep this in mind when we are looking for the dependent and independent clauses in each of these sentences.
  • Read the first sentence together.
    • Unless the package comes today, I will not be able to give her the gift.
  • Have students identify the key/signal word that tells us where the dependent clause begins.
  • So, if we know that unless is the dependent key word here, should we just circle the word unless? (No, because it is only one word and a clause is a group of words with a subject and predicate.)
  • Ask scholars what part of the sentence we should circle. (We need to circle the words, “Unless the package comes today,” because this is the clause that is dependent on the second half of the sentence.)
  • Discuss WHY we need the independent clause, “I will not be able to give her the gift,” to complete the thought. Ask scholars to think of other independent clauses we could insert to complete the thought.
  • Complete the next three sentences together, having the same discussions about key words and which clauses needs the other. Then, have students complete the rest of the worksheet (the back, too) with a partner or independently. 

Lesson Resources

intro to independent and dependent clauses handout.docx  


janet smith Posted 5 years ago:
excellent! Worked like a charm...



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