English Online
with Speak Method


Online Classes 500 Words Pronunciation
R, Th, T and other sounds Business Communication
Local Classes Pronunciation Facts
TOEFL Prep ESL Stories
Contact us Vowel Sounds
Grammar and Idioms For Young People

English Grammar

Using Conjunctions that Connect

The most common conjunctions are those that connect things: and, but, or and for. "For" is from older English and is not popular as a conjunction these days. Conjunctions can be used in different ways: sometimes to connect independent clauses and sometimes to connect an independent and a dependent clause. Remember, an independent clause can stand alone as a sentence. A dependent clause cannot.

Middle Dependent
Middle Dependent
Middle Independent
And he was right.
I went shopping for socks, shoes and shoe polish.
I went to the store and found some interesting gifts.
They went shopping, and they ate lunch afterward.

But we were wrong.
The singer was talented, but inexperienced.
I wanted to go to the party, but didn't have time.
I'm ready to go, but we can stay home if you're not feeling well.

Or it was for nothing.
What do you like on your pizza: garlic, onions or both?
She is either going to the mall or the grocery store.
We can order pizza, or we can go out to eat.
* You can use a conjunction at the beginning of a sentence, but not often. Use it for effect. It is best used with short sentences.
** Always use a comma when "and" and "or" separate independent clauses (not when one clause is dependent).
*** Always use a comma before the word "but."

Using Conjunctions in Descriptive Clauses

Although, though, even though, whereas, when, while, whether and yet are conjunctions that lead to descriptive clauses. They usually connect a dependent with an independent clause.

Although we were late, we found good seats.
They sat in the first row, though it was cramped, and listened to the music.
We enjoyed the concert even though we were in the last row.

When my brother came into town, he stayed at our house. My brother, when he came into town, stayed at our house. My brother stayed at our house when he came into town.

While I was shopping, I saw the CEO of our company. I saw, while I was shopping, the CEO of our company. I saw the CEO of our company while I was shopping.

The senator from New York voted yes, whereas the senator from Delaware voted no.
The book was helpful, yet incomplete.
Whether we win or lose, we will play our best game.
We will try, whether we win or lose, to play our best game.
We will play our best game whether we win or lose.

Whether or not we visit family, let's take our vacation in California.
Let's go, whether or not we visit family, and take our vacation
Let's take our vacation in California whether or not we visit family.
* although, though and even though are interchangeable. In each of the sentences above, any of these would work.
** "when" and "while" are sometimes interchangeable, but there is a difference in meaning. "While" emphasizes a period of time and "when" is just for time.

Using Conjunctions in Clauses that Give Reasons

Because, as, since, so and so that are conjunctions that give reasons for things. They usually connect independent clauses. (If you remove the conjunction, there are 2 complete sentences.)

Because he was broke, he didn't go into the store.
He didn't go into the store because he was broke.

As she is still finishing her bachelor's degree, she is staying in London.
She is staying in London, as she is still finishing her bachelor's degree.

I'm staying home, since I have a lot of cleaning to do.
Since I have a lot of cleaning to do, I'm staying home.

She gave her son the keys to the car, so he could practice driving.
So that he could practice driving, she gave her son the car keys.


Get More Practice

Back to Grammar and Idioms

Learn Pronunciation: Learn by Language

English Evaluations: Pronunciation and Grammar

English Classes Online

Back to Speak Method home page.

Learn English free online: learn pronunciation and grammar.

free english online learn pronunciation of English grammar writing