I teach students all the time that conjunctions are to be used in the middle of sentences only.
“You can not start at sentence with a conjunction. A conjunction is used to join words or phrases together. If a conjunction is at the start of a sentence it isn’t doing its job.”
I’ve actually said this or something similar more times than I can count during my teaching career. I’ve even shared the School House Rock DVD with my classes.
School House Rock is a brillant cartoon series of shorts that teach. Each short is set to music and has great visuals that help chidlren learn about grammar, science, mathematics, social studies, and more. I’m sure a lot of you recognized the reference in the title of this post. If not, go look it up. It’s well worth buying if you are a parent or an educator.
But here’s the point of this post. I don’t practise what I preach. And I always use conjuctions at the start of sentences when I write. Maybe this is something I need to correct. Maybe not.
I like using conjunctions because it seems to let my writing flow. It makes it a little more conversational in tone. And it’s okay to break the rules in writing if it helps to get the point across or evoke feeling in the reader.
So what do you think? Should I work harder in my writing and use conjunctions the way they were intended to be used? Or should I just blaze on and use them haphazardly if I find that it works?
Who knew that after all these years I’d still be asking, “Conjunction junction, what’s your function?”