Grammar and Punctuation Tips

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The summer holidays are coming to an end and if you’re not back at school yet, you will be soon. To help you prepare, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite posts on grammar and punctuation.

  1. Commas are confusing, but luckily we’re here to help. Click here to learn how to use commas to separate clauses, here to learn how to use commas as part of a list, and here to learn how to use commas in direct speech.
  2. If you think commas are difficult to use, you’ll probably think semi colons are worse. This punctuation mark is used to denote a break that has more emphasis than a comma but is less final than a full stop. In this article, we look at the two common circumstances in which it is appropriate to use a semicolon.
  3. We’ve already looked at how to use commas in direct speech, but what about the other rules for correctly formatting dialogue? Should you single or double speech marks? What punctuation marks should you use? Find out here. You can also practise spelling synonyms for the words ‘said’ here.
  4. All sentences have a subject and many also have an object. Knowing which of the two you're dealing with can help you with other aspects of writing. Find out more here.
  5. A suffix is added to the end of a word to change its meaning. Sometimes, when you add a suffix, the root word has to be changed slightly first. Find five tips for adding suffixes here.
  6. Capitals letters can be more complicated that you might think. While you can sometimes get away without using capital letters in informal writing (like emails or text messages), it is important to learn how to use them correctly for formal writing (like essays and business correspondence). Learn how to use them here.
  7. Shortening words can be a tricky business. Should you capitalise an abbreviation? Does it need an apostrophe? What about full stop after it? In this article we share top tips for forming abbreviations. A contraction is a particular type of abbreviation and in this article we look further at common contractions and how to format them correctly.
  8. One use of the apostrophe is to denote missing letters in contractions. Find out about the other ways to use this confusing punctuation mark here.
  9. One of the most common grammar mistakes people make is using an apostrophe when forming a plural. Make sure you don’t fall into this trap and learn how to form plurals correctly here.
  10. The term ‘word class’ is used to describe the way a particular word functions in a sentence and there are nine main word classes. Click here to learn about nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs; here to learn about conjunctions, determiners, exclamations, pronouns, and prepositions; and here to learn about the different types of pronouns.

Are there any grammar-related topics that you would like us to cover? Let us know!

30 Aug 2017
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"Thank goodness for Spellzone during this remote learning phase. The site is easy for students to navigate independently and they're really enjoying the activities and spelling games. You get an awful lot for your money with Spellzone. Really reassuring is the very prompt response with helpdesk queries. I've very rarely needed the helpdesk, but when I have, the issue has been addressed and sorted within a very short time."

Sarah Taggart, Oasis Academy Lord's Hill