Use punctuation to indicate a pause or a break
Use punctuation to indicate a pause or a break

Use punctuation to indicate a pause or a break

I can use punctuation to indicate a pause or a break.

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In this lesson, students will practice using punctuation, including commas, dashes and ellipses to indicate pauses and breaks.

(Ellipses will only be briefly covered in this lesson as they are taught fully in Using ellipses).



Learning objective

Students will be able to use punctuation to indicate a pause or a break.


Students will consider the purpose of commas and dashes and how they affect the way they read text. They will then analyze where they think punctuation should go in a few sentences so that it can be read correctly.


Students will learn the importance of commas, dashes, and ellipses in indicating a pause. They will also learn their distinctions and how to use each. They will learn/review the main situations in which commas and dashes are used so that they can use them properly to indicate a pause. Students will engage in activities, including discussing the change in meaning of a sentence when punctuation to indicate a pause is missing/removed, placing commas/dashes in sentences to create appropriate pauses, and deciding whether to use a dash or comma.


Students will correct sentences by adding commas and dashes to indicate pauses or breaks. They will then write their own sentences with commas and dashes.


Students will create a cartoon that shows the unintended meaning of a sentence due to missing punctuation. They will then exchange it with a partner who will add punctuation to restore the desired meaning.

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