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FANBOYS: 7 Important Coordinating Conjunctions

FANBOYS: 7 Important Coordinating Conjunctions

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FANBOYS! Coordinating conjunctions are the most popular category of English conjunctions. Simply put, they bring ideas together. They can join words, phrases, and clauses. In this lesson, you will learn a common coordinating conjunctions list in English.

FANBOYS – Coordinating Conjunctions

FANBOYS

We often use coordinating conjunctions to join words, phrases, or clauses that are of equal grammatical importance within a sentence. They are crucial in constructing compound sentences and adding variety to our writing. The acronym FANBOYS helps us remember these conjunctions: For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, and So.

  • For expresses reason.
  • And adds one thing to another.
  • Nor combines two negatives.
  • But shows contrast.
  • Or presents choices or alternatives.
  • Yet introduces a contrasting idea that follows logically.
  • So implies a cause and effect.

Remember, when using coordinating conjunctions to connect clauses, a comma precedes them. For example: “I am hungry, but I do not have any food.” When they’re joining individual words or phrases, commas aren’t always necessary: “I brought pencils, pens and paper.”

Function of FANBOYS 

Connecting Words, Phrases, and Clauses

When we write, we often need to join individual words or groups of words that are equal in importance. FANBOYS helps us do this smoothly. For example, in the sentence, “We need milk and eggs,” the word “and” is the coordinating conjunction that links two nouns. In a phrase such as “after the show or in the morning,” the “or” connects two phrases. Similarly, when connecting two dependent clauses like “She must hurry or she will be late,” the conjunction “or” is the glue that holds the sentence together.

Conjunctions in Compound Sentences

We use FANBOYS to construct compound sentences, which are sentences made up of two independent clauses. Each clause can stand alone as a sentence. We place a comma before the FANBOYS conjunction when it’s used in a compound sentence. Here are examples:

  • I am tired, but I have to finish this assignment.
  • We could go to the movies, or we could go bowling.

List of FANBOYS

FOR

The meaning of FOR is because or since. For as a conjunction is used to explain reason or purpose. (like “because” or ”since”)

Examples:

  • He doesn’t want to buy any electronical devices, for they are very expensive these days.
  • My teacher loves me very much, for I am a successful student.
  • I have to find a new job, for I am unemployed.
  • She gets weight easily, for she eats everything very quickly.
  • Scientists are trying to find a new livable planet, for the world is coming to the end.

AND

One of the most used words in English is ‘AND‘. It can be shortened by “&” sign in English. It means in addition to. And is used to connect words, phrases, or clauses that have the same grammatical function in a construction.

Examples:

  • I’m a husband and father.
  • He came in the house and the phone began to ring.
  • I work in a post office. And I also work in a library.
  • She talked and listened.
  • Please calm down, Let’s wait and see.

NOR

It means and not. NOR is used before the second or last of a set of negative possibilities, usually after “neither”.

Examples:

  • She didn’t talk to her friends nor did she call her family.
  • He can’t attend the meeting and nor can Ally.
  • Neither Klevin nor Janny were at the school yesterday.
  • Neither my son nor my daughter like drinking milk.
  • Today is neither the first nor the last day of the month.
  • Neither my parents nor my friends supported me.

BUT

The meaning of BUT is however. It is used to show a disagreement between clauses, or to connect ideas that contrast.

Also BUT means “except” when it is used after words such as all, everything/nothing, everyone/no one, everybody/nobody.

Examples:

  • I have got a home, but I haven’t got a car.
  • I go to work on Mondays, but I don’t go to work on Saturday.
  • He is very good at playing football but not at riding a bike.
  • Emmy goes to bed early, but She is always late for work.
  • He loves to read books on that date, but he hates taking notes.
  • He said he would live with his family, but he gave up after that.

OR

It means either. OR is used to connect different possibilities.

Examples:

  • Sally lives in London or New York.
  • Which color do you like red or blue?
  • Does Clark have any brothers or sisters?
  • Do you spend more time with your friends or with your family?
  • Teenagers need to sleep seven or eight hours a night.
  • We can cook soup for dinner, or we can just eat leftovers.
  • She studies hard for this exam or she fails.
  • I will go to the party or stay at home.

YET

It means but. YET is used to introduce a contrasting idea that follows the preceding idea logically.

Examples:

  • Tomy plays basketball well, yet his favorite sport is football.
  • Supporters of both teams complained about extreme heat, yet they continue to watch the match.
  • I really wanted my son to study at university, yet he left the school.
  • She lost the racing, yet she was happy to take part in such a contest.

SO

It means therefore, for that reason. SO means with the result or consequence of something.

Examples:

  • She was sick, so she couldn’t attend the meeting.
  • I studied hard, so I will be successful in the exam.
  • My daughter is very smart, so everybody likes her.
  • He has a job interview, so he will go to London.
  • Jack has changed, so much over time so nobody can know him.
  • I don’t feel myself good, so I don’t want to go anywhere.

Interactive Exercises

Exercise 1: Coordinating Conjunctions Multiple Choice

Instructions: Choose the correct coordinating conjunction from the options provided to complete each sentence.

  1. I was hungry, (for/and/nor/but) I didn’t have time to eat.
  2. You can either ride the bus (for/and/nor/or) walk to school.
  3. She didn’t want to go to the party, (for/and/nor/but) she ended up having a great time.
  4. The phone rang, (for/and/nor/so) I answered it.
  5. He wanted to play basketball, (for/and/nor/but) it was raining outside.
  6. We can watch a movie (for/and/nor/or) play a board game.
  7. She’s not going to the concert, (for/and/nor/so) she has to study for her exam.
  8. The cake was delicious, (for/and/yet/so) I had a second slice.
  9. He’s a talented musician, (for/and/nor/but) he’s also an excellent singer.
  10. The instructions were confusing, (for/and/nor/so) nobody knew what to do.

Answers:

  1. I was hungry, but I didn’t have time to eat.
  2. You can either ride the bus or walk to school.
  3. She didn’t want to go to the party, but she ended up having a great time.
  4. The phone rang, so I answered it.
  5. He wanted to play basketball, but it was raining outside.
  6. We can watch a movie or play a board game.
  7. She’s not going to the concert, for she has to study for her exam.
  8. The cake was delicious, yet I had a second slice.
  9. He’s a talented musician, but he’s also an excellent singer.
  10. The instructions were confusing, so nobody knew what to do.

Exercise 2: Fill in the blanks

Instructions: Choose the appropriate coordinating conjunction from the list (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) to fill in the blanks.

  1. I wanted to go to the beach, ____ it started to rain.
  2. She must hurry ____ she will miss the bus.
  3. They offered me a job, ____ I declined because I am moving to another city.
  4. He tried to lift the heavy box ____ he couldn’t move it an inch.
  5. You can have tea ____ coffee, whichever you prefer.
  6. She’s been working all day, ____ she’s still not finished.
  7. We can go to the movies ____ we can stay home.
  8. He doesn’t like broccoli, ____ does he enjoy eating spinach.
  9. The team played well ____ they lost the match.
  10. She studied hard ____ her efforts paid off when she got her exam results.

Answers:

  1. I wanted to go to the beach, but it started to rain.
  2. She must hurry or she will miss the bus.
  3. They offered me a job, but I declined because I am moving to another city.
  4. He tried to lift the heavy box but he couldn’t move it an inch.
  5. You can have tea or coffee, whichever you prefer.
  6. She’s been working all day, yet she’s still not finished.
  7. We can go to the movies or we can stay home.
  8. He doesn’t like broccoli, nor does he enjoy eating spinach.
  9. The team played well but they lost the match.
  10. She studied hard and her efforts paid off when she got her exam results.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does the acronym FANBOYS stand for in grammar?

FANBOYS is an acronym for the seven coordinating conjunctions: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, and so. These conjunctions play a pivotal role in connecting clauses and creating compound sentences.

Can you provide examples of sentences using each of the FANBOYS conjunctions?

Certainly! Here are sentences showcasing each conjunction:

  • For: We went for a walk, for we needed some fresh air.
  • And: She played the guitar, and he sang along.
  • Nor: He couldn’t find his keys, nor could he remember where he last put them.
  • But: I wanted to stay, but I had an early meeting.
  • Or: Do you want tea or coffee?
  • Yet: She’s only a junior, yet she’s already taking senior-level courses.
  • So: He was tired, so he went to bed early.

How can one effectively practice the use of coordinating conjunctions?

To practice, try writing sentences that require joining two independent clauses or ideas using each FANBOYS conjunction. Reading well-written material and identifying the conjunctions can also enhance your understanding.

Could you explain the role of coordinating conjunctions within the 8 parts of speech?

Coordinating conjunctions are one of the eight parts of speech. They serve to connect words, phrases, or clauses of equal rank or importance in a sentence, thereby contributing to the overall cohesiveness of communication..

ClanPsi

Friday 20th of November 2020

People need to stop using "have got." It's poor English.

Bob

Tuesday 27th of April 2021

Why? Sources please.

Alina

Friday 29th of January 2021

It's not that bad for example, 'I have got a missed call'.