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Punctuation practice: Conversational texts

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By Eileen Joneseducation journalist, author and literacy specialist

Polish up on punctuation skills with a fun exploration of written dialogue

Illustrated safari park

Last month, our new punctuation series introduced punctuation and its contribution to a text’s meaning, mood and effect on the reader. This month moves on to conversational text – a seemingly punctuation minefield where children can feel overwhelmed by the apparent complexity of special rules and conventions about which punctuation mark goes where. The secret is to build up and justify marks gradually. So, begin with the basics: Which words are spoken? What normal punctuation marks apply? How can I avoid those words and marks getting muddled up with the rest of the text? Using our stimulating online resources, which include a poster, activity sheets and an interactive resource, will ensure that placing punctuation marks correctly during conversational writing will soon become logical, memorable and fun.

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