Simple, Compound and Conditional Sentences

A sentence that consists of one clause is called a simple sentence. A compound sentence contains two clauses joined by a conjunction. A sentence with if is called a conditional sentence.

Simple Sentences

A clause is a group of words that contains one subject and one verb. A sentence that consists of one clause is called a simple sentence.

  • The girls are playing baseball.
  • Sally found a good hiding place.
  • I am eating my breakfast.
  • Tom is wearing his new shoes today.
  • Will you help me?
  • The sky was very cloudy.
  • I can hear the birds.
  • Everyone was happy.
  • Is it raining again?

Compound Sentences

A compound sentence contains two clauses joined by a conjunction such as and, or, but or so. There are two verbs, one on each side of the conjunction.

  • Some people are always happy and some people are always sad.
  • She opened the bag and took out a book.
  • Do you want coffee or would you prefer lemonade?
  • Is that a bird or is it a plane?
  • John is good at English but he’s not very good at math.
  • Michael wants to see Star Wars but his friends have already seen it.
  • Tom dropped his sandwich so I gave him mine.
  • It started to rain so we went inside.

Conditional Sentences

To talk about things that are possible, you often use if in a sentence. A sentence with if is called a conditional sentence. For example,

  • If it rains tomorrow, we shall not go to the beach.

In the if-clause, use a verb in the simple present tense. In the main clause, use shall or will and an infinitive.

  • If there’s no rice in the cupboard, we’ll buy some more.
  • If we don’t work hard, we’ll never learn.
  • If we leave now, we’ll arrive on time.

You may also put the main clause before the if-clause.

  • We’ll play indoors if it rains.
  • You’ll get sick if you don’t eat good food.
  • Sam will do well in his piano recital if he practices regularly.

Positive and Negative Sentences

A positive sentence tells you about something that exists or something that is happening.

  • I like ice cream.
  • Michael is my brother.
  • The train leaves at five o’clock.
  • I’m feeling really tired.
  • She’s finished her homework.
  • Dad is in the kitchen.
  • There’s a cartoon on TV.

A negative sentence contains the word not or another negative word. Negative sentences tell you that something does not exist or is not happening.

  • I’m not very good at math.
  • Tom isn’t as tall as Alan.
  • We didn’t hear you shout at us.
  • Meera hasn’t read the Harry Potter books.
  • People can’t see very well in the dark.
  • There’s nothing interesting on TV tonight.
  • We’ve never been to China or Japan.
  • Nobody knows my secret.
  • There are no coins in my pocket.