Here are 2 new exercises to help practice some of the lessons given in my article on the various methods that can be used to rewrite English sentences. These exercises involve rewriting given sentences based on a specific component or rule – and it combines a large number of different methods. I have written these as a part of the upcoming, expanded version of Word Order in English Sentences, to help further develop understanding of sentence structure. There are many ways to do this, with suggested answers at the bottom of the page. Enjoy, and let me know if you have any questions!
Exercise 1: Rewriting a Simple Sentence
Change the following sentences using the method indicated.
- I gave my friend a present. (replace the object with another word)
- I gave my friend a present. (make the indirect object a prepositional phrase)
- I gave my friend a present. (add information to the indirect object)
- I gave my friend a present. (replace the object with a pronoun)
- I gave my friend a present. (replace the verb)
- I gave my friend a present. (change from active to passive)
- I gave my friend a present for her birthday. (change the time position)
- I gave my friend a present for her birthday. (change the preposition)
Exercise 2: Rewriting Different Sentences
Rewrite the following sentences by changing the indicated component.
- The man was furious. (adjective)
- The council would not collect the rubbish. (verb)
- We watched a film on birds. (preposition)
- The bus was late because of the bad traffic. (clause order)
- The gate was opened by a guard. (active tense)
- When she got home, the door was unlocked (time clause position)
- She cooked a pie, some potatoes and green vegetables. (reorder list)
- The game was cancelled because it rained. (replace the dependent clause with a noun phrase)
Answers to Exercise 1
Below are suggested ways to rewrite the sentence; there are other possibilities.
- I gave my friend a gift.
- I gave a gift to my friend.
- I gave my good friend Wendy a present.
- I gave it to my friend.
- I handed my friend a present.
- My friend received a present from me.
- For her birthday, I gave my friend a present.
- I gave my friend a present on her birthday.
Answers to Exercise 2
There are many options to change these sentences, below are some suggested answers. If you are unsure about your answers, let me know in the comments below.
- The man was angry.
- The council refused to collect the rubbish.
- We watched a film about birds.
- Because of the bad traffic, the bus was late.
- A guard opened the gate.
- The door was unlocked when she got home.
- She cooked green vegetables, a pie and some potatoes.
- The game was cancelled because of the rain.