There are three types of sentences in English: Simple, compound and complex sentences. This worksheet focuses on writing compound sentences and is ideal for lower-intermediate classes. Teachers can feel free to print-out this page to use in-class.
Compound Sentences - What are They?
Compound sentences are made up of two simple sentences connected by a coordinating conjunction. These conjunctions are also known as FANBOYS:
F - For
A - And
N - Nor
B - But
O - Or
Y - Yet
S - So
Here are some example compound sentences:
Tom arrived home. Then, he ate dinner. -> Tom arrived home, and ate dinner.
We studied many hours for the test. We didn't pass the test. -> We studied many hours for the test, but we didn't pass it.
Peter doesn't need to buy a new car. He also doesn't need to go on vacation. -> Peter doesn't need to buy a new car, nor does he need to go on vacation.
Conjunction Use in Compound Sentences
Conjunctions are used for different purposes in sentences. A comma is always placed before the conjunction. Here are the main uses of the FANBOYS:
Addition / Next Action
addition -> Tom enjoys playing tennis, and he likes cooking.
next action -> We drove home, and we went to bed.
but / yet
We wanted to visit our friends, but we didn't have enough money to get a flight.
Janet did very well on her job interview, yet she didn't get the position.
Cause / Effect
for / so
cause -> Mary needed some new clothing, so she went shopping.
effect -> They stayed home for the holiday, for they had to work.
Choice Between Two
We thought we might go to see a film, or we might have dinner out.
Angela said she might buy him a watch, or she might give him a gift certificate.
Not One nor the Other
We won't be able to visit our friends, nor will they be able to visit us this summer.
Sharon isn't going to the conference, nor is she going to present there.
NOTE: Notice how when using 'nor' the sentence structure is inverted. In other words, after 'nor' place the helping verb before the subject.
Compound Sentence Worksheet
Use FANBOYS (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) to write one compound sentence using the two simple sentences.
- Peter drove to visit his friend. They went out for dinner.
- Mary thinks she should go to school. She wants to get qualifications for a new profession.
- Alan invested a lot of money in the business. The business went bankrupt.
- Doug didn't understand the homework assignment. He asked the teacher for help.
- The students didn't prepare for the test. They didn't realize how important the test was.
- Susan thinks she should stay home and relax. She also thinks she should go on vacation.
- The doctors looked at the x-rays. They decided to operate on the patient.
- We went out on the town. We came home late.
- Jack flew to London to visit his Uncle. He also wanted to visit the National Museum.
- It is raining. It is very cold.
- Henry studied very hard for the test. He passed with high marks.
- I would like to play tennis today. If I don't play tennis, I would like to play golf.
- We needed some food for the week. We went to the supermarket.
- Tom asked his teacher for help. He also asked his parents for help.
- Janet doesn't like sushi. She doesn't like any kind of fish.
Continue to the next page to check your answers.