warm up: parallelism & restrictive & NONRESTRICTIVE clauses -
- Parallelism is the use of similar grammatical forms or sentence structures to balance and emphasize related ideas in a sentence. Using parallelism will help your readers understand what you are trying to communicate and improve your writing's clarity.
Mentor sentences from literature:
“Humanity has advanced, when it has advanced, not because it has been sober, responsible, and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious, and immature.” ----- Tom Robbins Still Life with Woodpecker
“The wheels wheeled, the chairs spun, the cotton candy tinted the faces of children, the bright leaves tinted the woods and hills. A cluster of amplifiers spread the theme of love over everything and everybody; the mild breeze spread the dust over everything and everybody. Next morning, in the Lafayette Hotel in Portland, I went down to breakfast and found May Craig looking solemn at one of the tables and Mr. Murray, the auctioneer, looking cheerful at another.” - E.B White Goodbye to Forty-Eighth Street
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair. - Charles Dickens Great Expectations
Restrictive and non restrictive clauses
A restrictive clause is necessary for the noun or part of speech it modifies, without it the sentence would not have the same meaning. Restrictive clauses, therefore, must be in the sentence and therefore, they are not set off by commas.
Musicians who sell millions of albums should make millions of dollars.
The restrictive clause is: “who sell millions of albums" and indicates that only those musicians who are able to sell millions of albums should be paid millions of dollars.
What if we were to add commas and make it non-restrictive?
Musicians, who sell millions of albums, should make millions of dollars.
This changes the meaning & suggests that all musicians should be paid millions of dollars, regardless of how many albums they sell.
What about this sentence?
The man who is wearing the blue sweater is my father.
In this sentence, “who is wearing the blue sweater” is a restrictive clause because there could be many men in the direction I am pointing, but there is only one who is wearing a blue sweater.
Non-restrictive Clauses: Clauses that are not necessary or essential for the word it modifies... In other words, if this clause or phrase were to be taken out of your sentence, the meaning of the sentence would not change. These should be set off by commas.
Example: My aunt, who is deeply religious, goes to church every Sunday.
If we take out “who is deeply religious” in this sentence, it would read:
My aunt goes to church every Sunday.
The reader would still get the meaning about the aunt.
A restrictive clause is one that is essential to the meaning of the sentence element that it modifies. In other words, if a restrictive clause were taken out of the sentence, the sentence would not carry the same meaning.
A nonrestrictive clause is one that is nonessential to the meaning of the sentence element that it modifies. In other words, if a nonrestrictive clause were taken out of the sentence the sentence would carry essentially the same meaning.
Now, your turn to practice:
1. My father who drives a red car was late to pick me up.
2. The green vase that is on the top shelf is very expensive.
3. Keenan asked Victor, who was in his class, if he could have a ride.
4. The thief hid the money that he had stolen from the store.
5. Amanda spoke to the clerk who was helping her.
6. The letter, which was written in blue ink, told Eugene the location of the key
Here's how it will look on the STAAR:
Sentence in Selection: Yet many of our students who work very hard move on to the "real-world" without much life experience.
Yet many of our students, who work very hard, move on to the "real-world" without much life experience.
Why are commas needed?
Today, we will be writing a rough draft of an expository essay using the prewriting you have already completed. Let's look at some good samples of what this looks like: