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Play “Conjunction Junction” by SchoolHouse Rock for your students. After you watch the song, ask students to discuss what it is about. Then pass out the lyrics to the song (which can be printed off the Schoolhouse Rock website), and have students identify the different ways conjunctions can be used. Encourage them to use examples from the song. This activity should introduce them to the basic concept of what a conjunction is and what it does. Refer back to this song as you continue teaching conjunctions.
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Write a list of conjunctions on the board, and then write the sentence “I went to the party, and I was wearing my purple shoes.” Ask students to identify the conjunction in the sentence (and). Then have them replace that conjunction with one of the other conjunctions from the list. Ask students to explain how the sentence has changed. For example, you might replace “and” with “but” or “however.” You also might replace it with “because,” which would give the entire sentence a different meaning. Make sure that your students understand that all conjunctions connect words, phrases, or clauses, but that they connect them in different ways. If you’d like, repeat with other sentences such as “The car raced down the street, and the brakes weren’t working.” (In this example, you might explain why some types of conjunctions do not work at all, whereas some are stronger than others.)
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Write one conjunction on each of a stack of notecards, and give out one notecard to each student. Then write the beginning of a sentence on the board, such as “The dog leapt at the cat…” and instruct students to finish the sentence using their conjunction. Have them work with a partner to perfect their sentences, and then encourage them to share their finished sentences with the class.
Grammar Lesson Plans: Teaching Conjunctions
These parts of speech lesson plans will help you to make sure that your students actually learn the various parts of speech - and have fun in the process!