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1 Diagramming Sentences We can diagram a sentence to show its structure, and to see how its parts are related. We can diagram sentence a Brought to you by V. Hinkle

Diagramming sentences

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Page 1: Diagramming sentences

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Diagramming Sentences

• We can diagram a sentence to show its structure, and to see how its parts are related.

We can diagram sentence

a

Brought to you by V. Hinkle

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Start with a horizontal line.

• Write the simple subject and verb on the line.

• Artists paint.

Artists paint

• Separate them with a vertical line that crosses the base line.

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Another example:

• Birds are singing.• Write the simple subject and verb on

the line.• Separate them with a vertical line

that crosses the base line.

Birds are singing

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What if we describe the subject?

• Talented artists paint.• “Talented” describes “artists.”• Write it on a diagonal line below the

word it describes.

artists paint

Talented

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What if we describe the verb?

• Talented artists paint well.• “Well” describes how they paint.• Write it on a diagonal line below the

word it describes.

Artists paint

Talented

well

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What if there is a direct object?

• What do artists paint?• Talented artists paint pictures well.• Write the direct object after the verb.• Draw a vertical separator which stops at the line.

Artists paint

Talented

well

pictures

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Have you noticed?

• The vertical line that separates the subject from the verb crosses the base line.

Artists paint pictures

• The vertical line that separates the verb from the direct object stops at the base line.

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What if we describe the direct object?

• Talented artists paint realistic pictures well.• What kind of pictures do artists paint?• “Realistic” describes “pictures.”• Write it on a diagonal line under “pictures.”

Artists paint

Talented

well

picturesrealistic

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What if there is a prepositional phrase?

• Talented artists paint realistic pictures of people.• What do artists paint pictures of?• “Of people” describes the pictures.• Write it on a frame under “pictures.”

Artists paint

Talented

pictures

realistic

people

of

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Try a different prepositional phrase.

• Talented artists paint realistic pictures on canvas.

• Where do artists paint pictures? “on canvas.”• How, when, and where describe verbs.• Write it on a frame under “paint.”

Artists paint

Talented

picturesrealisticcanvas

on

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Build a new sentence.

• Hamsters run.

Hamsters run

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Describe the hamsters.

Energetic hamsters run.

Hamsters run

Energetic

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Where do hamsters run?

Energetic hamsters run on wheels.

Hamsters run

Energetic

onwheels

Prepositional phrase

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What kind of wheels?

Energetic hamsters run on exercise wheels.

Hamsters run

Energetic

onwheels

exercise

“exercise” describes wheels

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Practice another sentence.

• Hamsters eat.

Hamsters eat

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What do hamsters eat?

• Hamsters eat seeds.

Hamsters eat seeds

“Seeds” is the direct object.

It follows the verb, after a vertical separator.

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What kind of seeds?

• Hamsters eat sunflower seeds.

Hamsters eat seeds

“Sunflower” describes “seeds.”

Write it on a diagonal line under “seeds.”

sunflower

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Have you noticed?

• Only subjects, verbs, and objects• Go on the horizontal line.• Words that describe them go below

them on diagonal lines.

Monkeys eat bananas

Hungry

sweet

in trees

the

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Linking verbs

• Tweety is yellow.

Tweety

subject

is

verb

yellow

Subject complement

What follows a linking verb renames or describes the subject.

It is a complement, not a direct object.

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Linking verbs

• Tweety is yellow.

Tweety

subject

is

verb

yellow

Subject complement

Because the complement describes the subject, the dividing line tilts back toward the subject.

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Try another sentence.

• Sylvester is a cat.

Sylvester is cat

a

• Cat = renames Sylvester.• Cat = predicate noun.

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Add more description.

• Poor Sylvester is a frustrated predator.

Sylvester is predatoraPoor

frustrated

• Predator = renames Sylvester.

• Predator = predicate noun.

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Other linking verbs

• The pot of brains smells suspiciously rancid.

pot smells rancid

ofThe

suspiciously

brains

• Rancid = describes the pot.• Rancid = predicate adjective.