Three Steps to Mastering the Comma | Helen Companion | Skillshare

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Three Steps to Mastering the Comma

teacher avatar Helen Companion

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (39m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Independent Clauses

    • 3. Non essential elements

    • 4. Conjunctions

    • 5. Special Situations

    • 6. 3 Common Comma Mistakes

    • 7. Conclusion

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About This Class

Think back to the last time you wrote anything. Were you confident about where you placed your commas?

If not, then you're not alone! Comma errors are the most common set of grammatical mistakes -- just ask any English teacher. Rather than a list of rules, this course teaches comma usage through three easy steps that just about anyone can remember and apply. In fact, I use this approach a lot with English Language Learners who are even more likely to be confused by all the confusing grammatical terms than native speakers. 

In this class, you'll learn

  • How punctuation can dramatically change the meaning of a sentence (and how not to write a love letter) 
  • How to identify an independent clause in a sentence
  • An easy trick for determining whether or not a sentence is complete
  • How to identify grammatically extra information and where to put related commas
  • Different kinds of conjunctions and how to remember the most important ones with a single word
  • How to avoid the three most common comma errors

If you've ever stared at a sentence, took a comma out, and then put it back in, this class is for you. Throughout the class, you'll have ample opportunities to test your skills and flex your comma muscles with short exercises. Because editing and proofreading can be very difficult to accomplish on a video, I've also included a 30+ page booklet of answers, additional information about commas, and additional exercises. 

By the end of this course, you'll be confident in your comma placement, and you'll be able to figure out when you need a comma -- even when you're too tired to remember your own name. 

Meet Your Teacher

Hello all! 

I've loved the English language for literally as long as I can remember. My entire life has been, in some way or another, punctuated by this love affair. As a little kid, I told my brother stories I made up. I went to the Alabama School of Fine Arts for high school, which is a very well-reputed arts school in Birmingham, and my major was Creative Writing with a specialty in poetry. As such, I have several poems and stories published in various places. In college, I decided I wanted to be an English teacher and a scholar, so that's my "day job" now. I've published peer-reviewed articles on topics related to the English Renaissance, and I am pursuing a Ph.D. in the field. I also teach classes at a local college, and I teach on-demand over the summers when fewer stu... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi, everyone. My name is Helen Companion, and this is three steps to mastering the coma. I have my master's degree in English and I teach at a small college, have worked with hundreds of students from about fourth grade. Doctoral candidates have also published. Everything from short comes to full length academic articles in peer review journals and everything in between. I'm in English, nor that your teachers dreamed about. For me, grammar is fascinating and diagramming sentences is stalling. I frequently hear complaints from students that punctuation doesn't really matter. You know what I meant? They say, and they're right. Most of the time I do. However, Punctuation Functions is an instruction manual for readers, and it shows them how to read what you've written in. The next couple of slides will look at some fun examples of how punctuation can radically change the meaning of a sentence or passage because they have to be so condensed and it's difficult to put punctuation on signs. They're a great place to find hilarious mistakes in grammar and punctuation. This sign is intended to recognize all who have served in the military. Instead, the lack of punctuation makes it a memorial to those brave waiters and waitresses who worked the breakfast rush. And likewise in this fine what was intended as an invitation to breakfast has become cannibalistic or at the very least, rather inappropriate for a church sign. Last example is probably my favorite. The words in the letter on both sides are identical. All the changes is the punctuation. Here's the first letter. Dear John, I want a man who knows what love is all about. You were generous, kind, thoughtful People who are not like you admit to being used. Listen inferior. You have ruined me for other men. I yearned for you. I have no feelings whatsoever. When we're apart, I can be forever happy. Will you let me be yours, Gloria? And this is the second letter. Dear John, I want a man who knows what love is all about. You are generous, kind, thoughtful people who were not like you admit to being useless and inferior. You have ruined me for other men. I yearn for you. I have no feelings whatsoever. When we're apart, I could be forever happy. Will you let me be yours? Gloria? What was a lovely sentiment has now become a harsh break up letter, and all the change were few little tiny black marks issues with comma and sentence structure of the single most common concern I see in writing at all levels. When I was an undergrad, I was one of those students to for me, it was the presentation of the rules for common usage, even though I understood the grammar and syntax that arrive in a place with a potential or missing comma. And it was like a had grammar PTSD. I found trying to remember all the different rules to be confusing and overwhelming. The graphic on the slides have shows an emoji with the standard grammar rules floating around its head. This is how I feel. It's hell, I imagine most people feel when they see the work comma for my own benefit, initially to rearrange the rules and started using the method I'm about to show you in this class. Since then, I've used with my own students, and I found that for the vast majority, this is much easier to grasp from the traditional approach. This method takes the 13 to 15 rules depending on who you talk to and condenses them into three steps and a handful of related exceptions. Fundamentally, commas separate the main thought called independent clause from other information in the Senate's First, you have to learn how to identify that independent clause. Then we'll talk about information that exists outside of the independent clause, often called a non essential element. And how to deal with that from there will discuss the couple kinds of conjunctions, how to use them and when and when not to use a comma. And then after that, we'll talk about a couple situations that don't fit into the above framework. Think there's four or five of them. There aren't many. And I'll I'll also show you some of the most common mistakes made McComas and how to avoid them. Here's what you learn in a different way. How to identify an independent clause without diagramming a sentence when to use conjunctions to join clauses and all the seven coordinating conjunctions summed up in one word. How to identify attention, additional information in the Senate and when to use a comma to set it off. The three must come and coma mistakes and easy ways to avoid Hm also follow a pretty predictable structure. I'll introduce the topic, then we'll discuss it in the main content of the lesson. I'll provide some examples, and I finally, I'll give you a few exercises. Deflect your comma muscles at the end of the class will choose between two options for a final project. Correct in common use in a piece of your own writing or in the examples that will provide at the end. I've also included a hand out with the all of the instructions. Are all the exercises here additional exercises and all of the answers as well? Um, and there's a couple Paul. So probably gonna be a little bit of additional information. Some other stuff to help you. Master. Call me usage. I'm still finishing it up. When you're ready, start the next lesson. 2. Independent Clauses: welcome back to three steps for mastering the comma. In this last thing, we're going to discuss the independence clause, which is the backbone of Senate structure. Every complete sentence has at least one independent close because comma separate that main thought from everything else in the sentence. Identifying independent clause or clauses in a sentence will very quickly help you to see where you might need a coma. Many sentences do have more than one independent clause in them. The exercises in this section deal primarily with simple sentences those with only one independent clause because will address how to connect them in the third step. However, if you can use to identifying all of the independent clauses in the sentence at this point , it will help you a lot later on. So what makes an independent clause? It has three components. The subject, which is the person, place or thing that is doing were being something a verb, the state of being with the thing being done, and it always forms a complete thought. If you're thinking that sounds like the definition of the sentence, that's because it iss ah, single independent clause is a simple sentence and that can be a good way of thinking about them. Independent clauses are parts of a Senate that could be sentences of the room, so the subject is the person or thing doing in action or existing in a state of being. That sounds complicated, but it's really not. Just think of the subject is the do er so if I have the Senate, I am. I is the subject, and Mr Verb never have the sentence he runs. He is. The subject runs is Lipper Independence Clauses must also makes sense on their own if they cannot be understood. Without more information being added to the sentence, the mayor fragments or dependent clauses, and we'll talk more about those later. So here are some examples of some sentences with the independent clauses underlined the subjects and bold and the verbs and italics Dogs Walk dogs is the now walk is the verb. It makes sense. It's an independent clause. Tranquility set a tree house on fire. Tranquility is the now set is the burb. It makes sense. It's a invented cause. I love chocolate, but you like bacon. We have two independent clauses here called a compound sentence. I is the subject in the 1st 1 Love is the verb In the 2nd 1 he was the subject like Is the verb I love Chocolate? Makes sense. It's an independent clause. You like. Bacon makes sense. It's an independent clause. If you're worried about having to identify the subject and verb in every sentence, don't about to show you a neat little trick that you can use to figure out whether or not a pen, passages and independent close without having to worry about or remember a bunch of reminder terms. It's called me. I know that test, and what it says is that if you put the words, I know that before almost any complete planets or independent clause, it will still make sense. I know that this Senate systematically, if you put I know that before anything that is not a complete thought, it will no longer make sense or what will sound incomplete. I know that this sentence is we don't know what the Senate says because the thought isn't complete, and so that is not a complete thought off for an independent clause. There are two situations with this test does not work. They don't come up all that often, but they don't work with questions or with commands. So if the question is, what are you doing? It's not gonna pass the test. I know that. What are you doing? Doesn't make sense. If the command were take out the trash, I know that Take out the trash. That doesn't sound right either, because that structure does not work with the I know that test, but it works for just about everything else. So here some examples. I know that badgers air ferocious. That makes sense. Badgers are ferocious, is an independent clause. I know that water is good for you. That makes sense. Water is good for you, is an independent cause I know that because I said so. Although we might say that a lot that doesn't make sense, it doesn't sound complete. It's not an independent clause. And a lot of people think that fragments, um, or dependent clauses have to be really short. They don't think this example. I know that some complicated grammatical logic involving a thing called conjunctions and noun phrases, another weird terminology dreamt up by a bunch of uptight grammarians in the 18th century. As long as it is, it doesn't form a complete thought. So it is not an independent clause. The things that are not independent clauses are fragments of the end of the period and dependent clauses if they're connected to an independent clause. I'm just telling you about these because they're important will deal with a different way of looking at them in the next section. But these might have a subject and a verb, but they will not form a complete thought. They must be connected to an independent clause in order to be in the sentence. They also will not pass the I know that test, which is a really good way to test for them. I'm so here are some examples of some fragments because I wanted to live. And if you apply the I know that test. I know that because I wanted to live what, under what circumstances doesn't make sense on its own. We need to know what the circumstances were. So I know that under what circumstances again, it doesn't pass the test. I want, in theory, that has a subject and a verb, and it could form a complete thought. But because of the nature of the verb want you actually have toe have something that is wanted causes transitive, so that does not form a complete thought. While you were busy fixing the world correcting the tights and defeating evil, we don't know what the other person was doing. So again, it's an example of a fragment that brings us to the end of this section here. The exercises for this one. Normally the answers will be posted on a separate document, and these questions and answers are also on that document. But I wanted to go ahead and include these at the top of the pain so that you could go ahead and double check your work because it really is important for the next section. Go ahead and test your skills with the I know that test by determining whether or not each of the following passages or independent or not. When you're ready, you could move on to the next lesson. Best of luck 3. Non essential elements: welcome to the third part of the three steps for mustering the comma class. In the last section, we learned how to identify and independent clause and how to use the I know that test. If you're not feeling confident about either of those, you might want to review that last video or check out some of the supplemental materials because it is really important for everything that comes next. You might remember when I said earlier that there are a lot of rules for calm I use. It's normally between. About 13 and 15 might also remember that I said that comma separate the independent clothes from any additional information. Some comes called non essential information. The vast majority of the standard rules pertain to these additional pieces of information. There are a ton of grammatical terms, and we'll talk about some of those very briefly. But what's really important is that you can identify that it's not part of the independent clause itself. And when we talk about non essential in this context, it refers to the grammar. Information can be absolutely necessary to understanding your topic, but can be dramatically non essential as far as where to look in the Senate's you want to look before the independent clause in the middle of it and immediately after it. Um, this is why it is so crucial to be able to identify the independent clauses so the following sides will go through each of the locations that extra information can appear. This slide will talk about information that appears before an independent clause, the independent clauses underlined, and the additional information is highlighted. So an introductory element is information that comes before the independent Close in introduces the clause itself. Sometimes these will be a single word, which is called introductory adverb like this. Therefore, we were late to the party. We were late to the party is the independent close and therefore is the introductory element. Other times it will be a full phrase or dependent clause, which is where those commit when we were young. We like to party. We like to party is an independent clause. You can say I know that we like to party when we were young is the dependent cough, but it introduces the main information. One type of introductory element is a direct address of these air, really simple, but they can sometimes cause some confusion. If another person is being addressed in a sentence in that person's name is set off by a comma. As in James, take out the trash or Helen, please teach me about grammar. The name of the individual is placed before a coma at the beginning of the sentence. Without the name, the sentence will function as a normal command. Take out the trash. Please teach me more about grammar and remember that commands will not pass. The I know that you can also have non essential information in the middle of a sentence. When information interrupts a main thought on independent clause, commas go on each side to separate it from the comma from the clause itself. The dog who was walking in the street was hungry and you can see that the independent clause the dog was hungry is on either side of that non essential element. So the non essential element, which is highlighted its put in kamas to set show that it is separate from the cause itself . This also applies to names or situations where one thing is renaming another. The grammatical term for this is called in a positive, so her boyfriend, James, was coming over to dinner. James is the non essential element, but it all is also renaming her boyfriend. You don't necessarily need to remember that term, but it is fun to know Bring up at a party to show off. Uh, you could also have it at the end. Um, these follow the same rules, is in the middle of a sentence that really not any different. But remember that a comma signals information that is not necessary. She thought that his behavior was unacceptable. No comma is needed there because all of it is part of the independent causing all of it is necessary. But in his behavior was unacceptable. She thought Ah, comma was needed because the sentence can function without Shae thought, unless it isn't a non essential element. And like with non essential elements in the middle of a sentence, comments here often are optional. With a couple of notable exceptions. This isn't really part of the three steps, but it's a really helpful piece of information, which and that are not interchangeable. You can never start a sentence with which it always starts a dependent clause. It almost always requires a comma and Onley. Rarely is there a situation where the comma before which is optional. On the other hand, that indicates information that is necessary for the sentence to make sense, which indicates information that is additional. For example, this sentence requires additional explanation which occurs here in the other sentence. This sentence that I'm writing does not require further explanation in the first sentence. The sentence requires additional explanation. That sentence works on it out on it down a second sentence. This sentence does not require further explanation. Really, you do need that information did to indicate that it is the sentence that I'm currently writing. So here's some examples. Maybe the dog was eating the trash, which was not acceptable behavior. The dog was eating. The trash is urine dependent clause, which was not acceptable. Behavior is your nonessential elements, Jimmy, a glue which made his lips sticky. Jimmy ate glue is the independent clause which made his lips sticky, is the non essential element in the morning. We woke up in the morning is the non essential element notice at the beginning and we woke up Is the independent clause the morning sunrise ablaze with right and gold was beautiful. The non essential element is ablaze with ripen goat. You can see that the sentence make sense. Without it, the morning sunrise was beautiful. And then one of the most famous examples of white commas are important. Let's eat, Grandpa. If you don't have that coma, you're saying you want to eat grandpa for dinner? You don't want to do that. So you need the common to indicate that you're speaking to Grandpa. So here the exercises for the section I want you to underline independent closets and circle any non essential elements. Then add commas if need be. When you're ready, move on to the 4. Conjunctions: for the next class in the Siri's, we're gonna talk about the words that link together clauses which are called conjunctions. These next two concepts may sound big and scary, but I'm gonna show you a really easy way to tell them apart. So there are several kinds of conjunctions. But the two that are important here are coordinating conjunctions, which connect independent clauses in a way that gives each equal focus in I eat and I sleep . The coordinating conjunction is and the other kind of subordinating conjunctions and subordinating conjunctions make one independent clause subordinate to another. I am arrested because I sleep because is the subordinated conjunction. There are seven coordinating conjunctions. There are only seven of them and they still fan voice for and nor But or yet and so. And if you can remember those, then you can remember where could put a comma anytime you have two or more independent clauses. The other type of conjunction that we're talking about here is the subordinating conjunction. There are a lot more of these than there are coordinating conduction ins, but you don't need to memorize them. Coordinating conjunctions tie to independent clauses together by making them equal subordinating conjunctions make one dependent on the other. Do you remember the I know that test. The reason that works is because that is a support. Dan, in conjunction I know is an independent clause that is the subordinated conjunction and whatever you put after that, if one with one independent clause is gonna work because of the rules of conjunctions, If there is a word connecting to independent clauses and it is not one of the Fanboys, it is probably a subordinating conjunction and you do not need a comma. There are also two other types of conjunction that are worth knowing the names of. But they follow similar rules to these two or the other things. We've talked about conjunctivitis and work verbs or words like, however, and therefore and they're treated like non essential correlative conjunctions of phrases like either or both aunt. And they generally join elements of sentences, not independent clauses. Together, they rarely require a comma, so we don't really need to worry much about them. So here's some examples with conjunctions. First ones are coordinating conjunctions. We are now at the picnic and everyone looks so happy. We're now at the picnic is an independent clause. So is everyone looks so happy and and is one of the Fanboys that connects them together. So you need the comma. I love you for you love me. I love you and you love me or both. Independent Clauses four is one of the Fanboys you need to calm. Did you want the salmon? Or did you want the steak Both their independent clauses and or is a coordinating conjunction? He is kind, but you are not. He is kind and you are not are both independent clauses, but is a conjunction coordinating conjunctions that you need the comma, subordinating conjunctions were visiting because you asked us because is a subordinating conjunctions connecting to independent clauses. So you do not need a comma and because is one of those words. But everyone likes to put a comma before because it sounds like you need one. But you don't. It's good thing to remember. He understood that he was not welcome. He understood and he was not welcome or both independent clauses. That is this is coordinating conjunction. You do not need a comma. I will join you when you leave for the trip. Same thing. I love you, Although you can be a jerk sometimes I love you and you can be a jerk Sometimes. Both independent clauses, although is a subordinated conjunction. No come and note that none of these four are fan boys. They're not Fanboys. You probably don't need a combo before it, so that's it for this section here. The exercises first still provide the seven coordinating conjunctions, and then you'll underline the independent clauses. Circle the conjunctions and place commas where needed. We've completed the three million steps. There are a handful of special exceptions that are important to remember. If you need to go back over anything, you can go back to the videos, or you can look at the supplemental material. When you're ready, you could start the next cloth, and we'll talk about those exceptions. 5. Special Situations: welcome to the fifth section of Three Steps to Mastering the Comma. As I mentioned in the previous class, there are some situations where you'll use a comma, but you're not dealing with an independent clause, a non essential element or a conjunction. There really aren't that many of them, and most of involved same concept, which I call the magic comma. It's also known as the calm of omission, but to me that sounds like the C. I. A. Has started naming grammatical terms, and I really don't like that idea. So what it says is that in some cases, commas can replace works. For the most part, this is not something you really need to worry about. The situations that matter are blood with the serial comma, which is a list of items. The comma is replacing the word, and it's actually the same with adjectives when they're multiple adjectives of the same rank, and I'll talk about that in a minute, modifying the same. Now you're also replacing the word and with a comma and then with quotes, your most of the time, taking up the word that in replacing it with a comma, of course, the coma cannot replace any word. Nor can calm always replace the same word, so you can't just take the word that out. Any time you want to replace it with a comma, there's only certain situations where this work. The first of these is the serial coma. A serial comma is used to separate items in a Siri's, as in about milk, comma, eggs, comma and bright. Theoretically, this rule exists because the common replaces the word and in each pair of the items in the Siri's I bought Milk Index and bread. One particular type of serial comma is called the Oxford Comma, and it is the center of untold Internet debates about coma usage. People really intense about the Oxford College. Probably Google it. Sometimes you want some laughs, and basically the Oxford comma is become of before the conjunction. In the last item, a series in I bought milk, eggs and bread, the comma after eggs and before and would be the Oxford comma. Some style guides, like a p A, do not require it, and while it's grammatically acceptable, it can often effect the clarity of the sentence. These, or at least most of them, are some of a famous and funny examples from around the Internet and most of these air really famous. Among those interviewed were Moral Haggard's two ex wives, Kris Kristofferson and Robert Duvall. What the sentence is saying is that Merle Haggard had two ex wives named Kris Kristofferson in Robert Duvall. Well, the author attended was among those interviewed were Merle Haggard's Two Ex Wives and Kris Kristofferson and Robert Duvall. And so to fix the clarity issues there you put the coma after Kristofferson. The second example is this book is dedicated to my parents. I'm Rent and God. So what the sentence is actually saying is that the individuals parents are God. An Ayn Rand probably not, was intended. Probably. The book is being dedicated to the parents Ayn Rand and got So you put the comma after Rand to clarify that highlights of Peter Ustinov's Global to Our include encounters with Nelson Mandela, an 800 year old Demi god in a dildo corrector. So, the sentence is saying, is that uh, Mandela has lived a long time and has very interesting hobbies to clarify. You would put the comma after Demi God so that it's clear that there are three different encounters, and then the last one isn't this funny? But it is important. Jane James and I enjoy our walks. That sentences punctuated could be read two ways. It could be read as the three of us enjoy our walks or I'm talking to Jane saying, Jay James and I enjoy our walks. So to make sure that it's clear that it's the three of us enjoying her long, she would put the comma after James. I think you should add the comma if it ensures clarity. If not, leave it out, my brother. So the next situation where you're going to use a coma to replace the word is with quotes. So commas are often used to introduce a quote, as in he said, Comma, she loves me. In this case, the comma is taking the place of the words that he said that she loves me. No, you don't use the common when you introduce a quote with the work that precisely because the comma is replaced, most native speakers instinctively know that additives were supposed to go in a certain order. They may not consciously know the adjectives are ranked, and that there is an official order. Now you can look it up if you want. Um, there's no reason you need to memorize it. Only tell me, Use a come between adjectives. It is if they're the same rank, and I'll show you to really easy tests that you can do to see if they're they're ranked the same. The first test is. Can the adjectives be reversed? So in the example, the black, smelly dog ran down the road. The smelly black dog ran down. The road also works, so it passes that test. The second test is can the word and be put back between the two adjectives the smelly and black dog ran down the road? It could be put back to some. It still makes sense, so so that passes both tests. You need to calm a between black and smelling, and this last one you probably already know. It's really easy. You use a comma with numbers greater than 1000 or every three deaths, more digits out. This rule applies to all numbers, except for years 1975 1975 and house numbers. And that's it for the special situations visit before there's really not that many of them for your exercise for this section, your place come was properly in each of these sentences, which are a combination of most of the rules from the previous lives. I omitted numbers because I think most people already know that one, when you're ready, will move on to the next class and we'll talk about the three most common common mistakes and how to avoid them. 6. 3 Common Comma Mistakes: the next and final class of the Siri's looks at common mistakes made with commas. The good news is you already know all of the information in the section. This is a review more than anything and a few things for you to look for to help you avoid these mistakes. So these are the big three fragments run on few sentences and comma slices. Some English teachers treat few sentences and comma slices as two different kinds of run ins. I prefer to treat them is different errors, mostly because I like things in groups of three, and I like to make things easy, but you can view them in which ever way makes the most sense to you. So, fragments. We've already talked a good bit about them in one of the previous section. So we're gonna go through this light pretty quickly what they are. They're missing a subject verb on their do not form a complete thought. In other words, they're incomplete sentence. One common misconception is that fragments are always short. That is not the case, and you'll see in this paragraph long fragment. Yesterday, while I was cleaning the house, doing the dishes, washing the laundry, making the beds, taking care of the Children, feeding the pets, making dinner, cleaning the dishes and paying the bills. We don't know what happened yesterday, so it's a fragment. You avoid them by using the I know that test. They will not pass it. If you need more examples, go back to the section on independent clauses or the supplemental materials. The next error is the run on or few sentence and no matter what names you give them, run on those few sentences and commerce places all involved to independent clauses that are not properly punctuated or missing. A conduction. The run on fused refused sentences normally categorized by the lack of punctuation where it should be, which is why I put it together. What it is are two or more independent clauses that are missing proper punctuation and or the appropriate conduction. Contrary to popular belief, run on is do not have to be long. Thies to Iran's dogs eat and cat strength, the first ones to run on because it's missing the comma, even though it has in the conduction. I'm right, you're wrong. That is Iran on refuse sentence because it is missing except missing both the conjunction and the Kama and how you avoid them is each independent clause will pass the I know that test and look for the Fanboys. If there's an independent clause on each side of one of those seven works, you need a common. Remember those are four and nor but or yet and so So Here are some examples of Runnels and how to correct them. So this 1st 1 is My cat is cute. Her name is Rhonda. The bully stole my lunch money and I told parents I told you it was wrong. You did it anyway And then the correction for the 1st 1 is to place the coma after cute and the word. And so my cat is cute and her name is Rhonda. Second, when you're just gonna put the calm after money. The bullies stole my lunch money and I told his parents the 3rd 1 But the Kama and the coordinating Junction. I told you it was wrong. But you did it anyway. Comma slices air kind of the opposite of run ins. They have too much punctuation. We're missing a conjunction. So really a common spices an extra comma. It most commonly appears in one of two situations, which are two independent clauses that are punctuated with Onley, a comma between them, or a comma placed before a family that does not have an independent clause on each side. So an example of the 1st 1 would be I went to the store home, I bought milk, and an example of the 2nd 1 would be I bought a dog and a cat. I bought a dog coma and a cat. There's not an independent clause on both sides, so you don't need that karma. So to avoid them, you're gonna use the I know that test to test for independent clauses in non essential elements. You also want to make sure that a comma and one of the Fanboys air placed between two independent clauses, and you want to make sure that you are not using a comma before one of the Fanboys that is not separating two independent losses. And so here are some examples and again, how to correct him. 1st 1 is I had her dog and her cat second, once she has a pet raccoon, it is weird. Tried to bite me 3rd 1 I don't like stuff. Squid. It tastes bad. So here the 1st 1 The problem is that there is not an independent clause on both sides. Her cat does not make a Sunday since so you would fix it by taking out the comma. I had heard off Inter fat in the 2nd 1 were missing conjunctions, so she had a pet raccoon and it is weird and it tried to bite me. And in the 3rd 1 I think it's best to put a subordinating conjunctions take out the comma. But there are other options. I don't like stuff squid, because it tastes that. 7. Conclusion: So here we are at the last video, in three steps to mastering the comma. So when recap what you learned how to identify an independent clause without diagramming a sentence. That's the I know. That test went to use conjunctions to join clauses and all of the seven coordinating conjunctions summed up in one word. Those are the Fanboys. How to identify additional information in the Senate. I went to use a common to set it off those air. You're not essential elements and the three most common common mistakes and easy ways to avoid them. So those are your comments. Places your runnels in your fragments. For the final project, you have two options. The first option is to choose a piece of your own writing. It could be a paragraph from a creative work and as they from school and email or anything else, identify any mistakes with commas and correct them. And then the second option is on the following slide there. Soon. Ladder is similar to the dear John Letter at the beginning. Like with that set of letters, the words are identical. All that has changed is the punctuation. I've removed all of the comments and as an option for a final project. You can choose one or both of the letters and replace the comments. So here are the two options for the final letters to your mother in law. It was such a shame you had to stay here for such a short time. I thought I might have coped, but it was unbearable. Seeing you leave, the relief was immense. When I heard we might see you again soon, I wanted to end it all by Thank by now, I hope I will not have to say it to you again for a long time. If you have the opportunity to spend Christmas elsewhere next year, please do not much love Matthew or dear mother in law. It was a shame you had to stay here for such a short time. I thought I might have coped, but it was unbearable. Seeing you leave. The relief was immense. When I heard we might see you again soon, I wanted to end it all by saying goodbye. Now I hope I will not have to say to you again for a long time. If you have the opportunity to spend Christmas elsewhere next year. Please do not much love Matthew and copies of these air available in the supplemental material. But no, it can sometimes be tedious to try to correct grammar on a video or to have to copy and paste. So that's it. Thanks for watching. If you need any help, feel free to contact me, and I hope you'll have a wonderful day.