As you watch the video, look at the examples of conjunctions (and, or, but, because, so, although). They are in red in the subtitles. Then read the conversation below to learn more. Finally, do the grammar exercises to check you understand, and can use, conjunctions correctly.
We use words called conjunctions, like and, or, but, because and although, to join two parts of sentences. Conjunctions can be used to give more information, give alternatives, give reasons, give results or give unexpected information.
We use and, or and but to connect two parts of sentences which are similar in grammatical status.
Do you want chocolate, strawberry or vanilla? (joining words)
Amy's dad is taking us on Saturday morning, and he's offered to bring us home again on Sunday. (joining clauses)
We use and for adding information, or for giving alternatives and but for unexpected or different information.
I'm OK for food, dance and music, and I'm having a wonderful time.
There's a reggae band from Jamaica or a Russian electro-pop group on the other stage.
She’d like to go but she can’t.
Can we use these words at the beginning of a sentence?
We don’t usually use conjunctions to start sentences when we’re writing, but people do when they’re speaking.
Or when they’re chatting on the internet?
Yes. There are a lot more conjunctions which we use to connect one clause with another clause. For example: because, for giving reasons, so, for talking about results or purposes, and although, for unexpected or different information.
I'd like to see that Irish band, because Celtic music is pretty cool.
(the second clause explains the reason Alfie wants to see the Irish band)
Although he doesn’t like camping, he goes to lots of music festivals.
(the speaker thinks it’s unusual to go to music festivals if you don’t like camping)
... we'll be there by 12. Although we have to put up our tents too.
(the information in the second sentence is different to, and contrasts, the information in the first sentence)
It's one of those cars for seven people, so there's plenty of room.
(the second clause shows the result of the first clause)
We need to arrive early so (that) we can get a good place.
(the second clause shows the purpose of the first clause; that is optional)
With that although sentence, can you put the clauses in a different order?
Yes, both orders are possible.
He goes to lots of music festivals, although he doesn’t like camping.
Can you also say “even though he doesn’t like camping”?
Yes, that means the same thing. There are a lot more conjunctions, but that’s enough for today.
No “buts”. It’s better to look at a small amount at a time …
So that I can remember it?
Worksheets and downloads
Daisy: Are you and Alfie going to the festival this weekend?
Oliver: Hmm? We want to, but we don't have a car so we're not sure how to get there. It's in the middle of nowhere!
Daisy: Amy's dad is taking us on Saturday morning, and he's offered to bring us home again on Sunday. Why not come with us?
Oliver: But where would we sleep? You can't fit five adults and tents in one car.
Daisy: You can in his – it's one of those cars for seven people, so there's plenty of room. Although we could look for a bed and breakfast in the village near the festival, if you'd rather.
Oliver: No, no, brilliant! Camping and concerts. A great combination!
Daisy: Or camping, concerts and cooking. It's a world music festival but there's also food from all over the world – Chile, Ethiopia, ummm ...
Oliver: Cool! Let's call Alfie and Amy, and get organised.
Alfie: Let's see ... here's the programme. The smaller concerts start at 12 but the bigger ones start at 3. What time will we be there?
Oliver: Well, if we leave here at about 10am, we'll be there by 12. Although we have to put up our tents too, so we could see something at 1 o'clock.
Amy: But we have to carry the tents from the car and then find a good space, so we'll be later than that.
Daisy: A space near food and toilets, but not too near because it'll be noisy ... and busy.
Alfie: True. So, carry the tents, find a space, put the tents up ...
Amy: (interrupting) … eat ... we'll be hungry by then.
Alfie: Also true. Put the tents up, eat ... so we'll be ready for concerts at, what? 3 o’clock?
Oliver: I would think so, yes.
Amy: Isn't your mum going? World music and food sounds like the perfect festival for her!
Daisy: I know, but she can't go even though she told me she'd really like to. She's in Vienna. ... and speaking of Mum ... Hi, Mum, we were just talking about you!
Sophie: All good, I hope!
Alfie: Hi, Sophie. Daisy was just saying you can't come with us all to the festival this weekend.
Sophie: No, I'm here in Austria until Tuesday – it's the land of chocolate cake, the waltz and Mozart, so I'm OK for food, dance and music, and I'm having a wonderful time ... but you can take photos for me, can't you? In fact, would you like to be guest bloggers and write a post?
Amy: Oh yes! That would be so cool!
Daisy: Great idea, Mum.
Sophie: So, my two, how are things ...?
Alfie: Wow, writing a post for Sophie's blog. Thousands of people read her blog!
Amy: I know! And we can interview people and try lots of different food from different places and if we organise ourselves, we can see as many concerts as possible.
Alfie: I'd like to see that Irish band, because Celtic music is pretty cool.
Amy: There's a Portuguese singer I'd like to see.
Alfie: Oliver and Daisy could write about the food ...
Amy: Umm … yes ... maybe. Although maybe we should see what they want to do too.
Alfie: Er, yes. Yes, we should.
Amy: But, it's a possibility.
Oliver/Daisy: OK, bye Mum. Love you.
Oliver: Bring us some cake! OK, you two, we were looking at the programme … Concerts. Hey, at 3 o'clock there's a great looking reggae band from Jamaica or a Russian electro-pop group on the other stage ...
Daisy/Oliver: I fancy the Russian gig – oh, haha.
Daisy: How about you two go to the reggae?
Alfie: Fine by me ...
Do you think you would enjoy camping at a music festival? Why? Why not? Tell us what you think!