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Using nevertheless

Discussion in 'Primary' started by robyn147, May 12, 2012.

  1. I was doing Read Write Inc recently. There was a sentence challenge with nevertheless in.
    It was raining hard, nevertheless ....
    I was convinced that a semi colon was needed after "hard" as the pause when you say it seems longer than a pause in a sentence such as:
    Although it was raining, we still went out.
    It seems like a way of joining 2 separate but connected sentences.
    It was raining hard; nevertheless, we still went out.
    As opposed to It was raining hard, nevertheless we still went out.
    I thought I was quite good at grammar but it's in the official book. A Google search has also not really helped.
    It's the same for "however".
    It was raining;however, we still went out.
    Or is it:
    It was raining, however we still went out.
    Or even:
    It was raining, however, we still went out.
    Any comments?
  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

  3. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Perhaps the book is aimed at children not yet able to understand semi-colons and so a comma is a better use there to save all the faff of explain the more complex punctuation?

    Isn't RWI aimed at children below level 3? Therefore semi-colon use is probably rather beyond them, commas are tricky enough at that stage.
  4. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    Isn't the comma version ( It was raining, nevertheless we went out) the dreaded comma splice we are meant to avoid?
    The two clauses can stand alone so should be joined by a semi colon rather than a comma.

    I think[​IMG]

  5. WolfPaul

    WolfPaul Occasional commenter

    You are right, and the workbook is wrong. The words "however" and "nevertheless" are not conjunctions.
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    I was on supply in a year 4 class working at level 2 with EAL needs.
    You try explaining "nevertheless" to that lot[​IMG]
    There was another sentence.
    Sara was an awkward girl, however....
    I had to explain what "awkward" meant[​IMG]
    And "however".
    If a workbook is going to be useful, it has to be correct, age appropriate and use appropriate language.

  7. A full stop works, too:
    It was raining. Nevertheless, we went out.
  8. james.

    james. New commenter

    The books are right, i think.

    A semi-colon isn't just for replacing commas when a longer pause is needed. If anything this is the job of a hyphen, but this would only ever be used in informal writing.

    A semi-colon is used to balanced, usually opposing, phrases e.g Some people love marmite; others hate it. Or, it is used to separate items in a list, where a comma is impractical.

    Nevertheless would require a comma, as would however.

    However should only be surrounded by two commas if the sentence makes sense when the however is removed. In this case it almost acts like an imbedded or subordinated clause. If the sentence doesn't make sense when the however is removed then the however is doing the job of a conjunction/connective.

    It was raining we still went out. is incorrect, and so only one comma is needed.
  9. james.

    james. New commenter

    Two clauses that can stand alone, but that are joined to make one sentence just make a compound sentence. We use these all the time, and usually a comma is needed to join them. A semi-colon has a different job altogether.
  10. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    I don't think that's quite right. Semi colons are used to join two complete sentences which are related but not sufficiently to require a colon! A semi colon is usually replacable by either a full stop or the word and still makes sense. Some connecting words are always preceeded by a semi colon, however and nevertheless being two of them.

  11. I'm sorry James, but I think you're mistaken. The semicolon is used to join two complete sentences, which these are because (as minnie, I think, pointed out) "nevertheless" is not a conjunction.
    The two sentences do not have to be in opposition, although they often are.
    Edit: As Carrie has now said =P
  12. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    nevertheless and however are conjunctive adverbs!
    So are moreover, consequently, therefore and otherwise.
  13. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    Just wait for next year's grammar test, year 6 teachers will be arguing on here 'til the cows come home[​IMG]
  14. WolfPaul

    WolfPaul Occasional commenter

    Yes, but you have to use a conjunction to join them. "However" and "nevertheless" are adverbs, not conjunctions.
  15. I use Freshstart (which has almost the identical excercise). I find quite a few irritating errors in grammar and punctuation in the booklets. So I tell the children that the book is not right....
    Personally, I think that 'nevertheless' is a hopelessly outdated word which children are unlikely ever to use in their future private or professional lives. I can't help thinking that its use here is just to jump a SATs hurdle. 'Children can write incredibly long and convoluted complex sentences incorporating words and constructions that they'll never use again once they have achieved their L4 (or higher)'

    But I know, you have to teach to them[​IMG]
  16. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    I usually have faith in my gut instinct. My ex used to do the comma splice regularly and it really annoyed me when he did it (but of course, he was always right [​IMG])
    I agree that "nevertheless" is an inappropriate word with the group I was teaching but what to do?
    This, however, is something that we have to get used to. [​IMG]
  17. WolfPaul

    WolfPaul Occasional commenter

    Personally, I think that the phrase "personally, I think" is tautological. [​IMG]
    I also disagree with the notion that "nevertheless" is outdated. I used it several times on last year's reports.
  18. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Jack has failed to make any progress this year;nevertheless Mr.Gove still expects him to achieve a level 4 [​IMG]

  19. My understanding is that they are "connective adverbs" rather than conjunctive... But that's probably an academic distinction when you know how to use them :p
  20. Ooooh. Picky! Genre, my dear, genre. This is an informal conversation..
    You sweet oldfashioned thing[​IMG]
    (Or are you a recent graduate of the NLS Convoluted Complex Sentence Experience?)


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