Category Archives: English and Grammar

English Review of Paragraphs

Overview Individual sentences express complete thoughts, and individual paragraphs support main ideas.  The development of paragraphs flows naturally to the development of arguments to support a central idea. Paragraph Length All the sentences in a paragraph support one main idea.   Suppose a journalist were writing an article about a city meeting.  She may choose to […]

English Review of Sentences

Overview A sentence is a group of words that form a complete thought.  There are different types of sentences depending on what they contain. Complete Sentence Students are often asked to write answers to essay questions in complete sentences.  A complete sentence has a noun that acts as a subject, and a verb that is […]

English Review of Basic Writing Structures

Overview Writers use basic structures to put their ideas in order and present them. Some of those basic structures include chronological, sequential, comparative, causal (or cause-and-effect), categorical, and evaluative. Chronological and Sequential The simplest way to order ideas is to present them as they happen in time, with a beginning, middle, and end. Most stories […]

English Review of Transitions

Overview One of the ways to help the reader understand the points made or the direction the argument is going is by the use of transitions.  Transition words and phrases signal illustration, contrast, continuation, or conclusion. Illustration One of the ways to develop an idea is by illustrating examples.  They add more information about a […]

English Review of Spelling

Overview Although sounds many sound the same in English, they may be spelled differently.  Therefore, many words that sound similar may be spelled very differently, and any English spelling rule is likely to have exceptions. Same Sound, Different Spelling Many similar sounds are expressed by different combinations of letters.  For example, the long a as […]

English Review of Expressing Numbers

Overview Rules for how numbers are expressed in print depend on the formality of the writing task.  When writing is very formal, such as in a book or essay, numbers are spelled out as words.  In less formal writing or in letters, numbers are often expressed as numerals.  When using a specific style, such as […]

English Review of Word Division

Overview Although it is always better to avoid dividing words, English has rules about dividing words by syllables if necessary.  Words of one syllable cannot be divided.  Words are often divided using prefixes, suffixes, and syllables. Words Not to Divide It is always better to avoid dividing words, because when part of a word is […]