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Standard 5: Language

Students will apply knowledge of grammar and rhetorical style to reading and writing.


READING: Students will apply knowledge of grammar and rhetorical style to analyze and evaluate a variety of texts.

7.5.R.1 Students will recognize the correct use of prepositional phrases and dependent clauses.

Student Actions 

Teacher Actions 

  • Students review that a prepositional phrase is a word or group of words linked to a noun or verb to describe the direction or condition

    • the position of something (e.g., under the chair)

    • the time when something happens (e.g., after dinner)

    • the way in which something is done (e.g., without speaking)

  • Teachers explain and review the correct use of prepositional phrases and dependent clauses.

  • Teachers explain the function of prepositional phrases.

  • Teachers explain various functions of dependent clauses.

  • Teachers provide students opportunities for students to recognize prepositional phrases and dependent clauses in text.

  • Teachers monitor and provide opportunities for students to receive feedback on the use of prepositional phrases and dependent clauses.


  • Students will understand that a dependent clause is a group of words that:

    • contain a subject and a predicate.

    • function as a unit in a sentence.

    • does not express a complete thought.


Supporting Resources 

Teacher Insights 


  • Students must distinguish between correct and incorrect usage involving prepositional phrases and dependent clauses.

  • Prepositional phrases will always begin with a preposition and end with a noun or pronoun (called the object of preposition).

  • Prepositional phrases function as either an adjective phrase or adverb phrase.

    • Adjective: Joe is the student with the highest grade.

    • Adverb: Megan put her bird in its cage.

  • A dependent clause, or subordinate clause, cannot stand alone and must be in the sentence with an independent clause. A dependent clause contains a subordinating conjunction.

    • While you were sleeping, a lightning bolt hit our oak tree.

  • Giving students a short, concise list of subordinating conjunctions, words that commonly start dependent clauses, will help them readily identify those in a sentence.

    • Subordinating conjunctions to show time: after,​ ​before,​ ​when,​ ​while,​ ​as​​,​ ​whenever,​ ​since,​ ​until,​ ​as​ ​soon​ ​as,​ ​as​ ​long​ ​as,​ ​once

    • Subordinating conjunctions to show cause and effect: because,​ ​since,​ ​now​ ​that,​ ​as,​ ​so,​ ​in​ ​order​ ​that

    • Subordinating conjunctions to show condition: if,​ ​unless,​ ​whether,​ ​providing

    • Subordinating conjunctions to show contrast: although,​ ​even​ ​though,​ ​though,​ ​whereas,​ ​while

    • ELA OAS Support Document pg 15.

  • Dependent clauses can appear at the beginning, middle, or end of a sentence.

    • Though she is hard on you, your mother loves you.

    • Your mother, though she is hard on you, loves you.

    • Your mother loves you, though she is hard on you. 

Due to recursive nature of the standards, it is essential that teachers are aware of how all objectives within and between strands work together for optimal instruction. 

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