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Know Your Punctuation: Brackets for Parenthesis

In this worksheet, students revise and practise using brackets to add parentheses to sentences.

'Know Your Punctuation: Brackets for Parenthesis' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 3

Curriculum topic:   Grammar and Vocabulary

Curriculum subtopic:   Extend and Apply Grammatical Knowledge

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

A parenthesis is a word or a phrase that is inserted into a sentence to add information or explain something.

 

The extra information can be put inside commas, dashes or brackets.

 My sister, who is called Emily, loves horses.

My sister - who is called Emily - loves horses.

My sister (who is called Emily) loves horses.

 

Brackets are used when the writer wants the information to stand out more than it would if commas were used. Dashes are generally used in informal writing such as emails.

 

The plural of parenthesis is parentheses, and the word is sometimes used to refer to the brackets themselves as well as to the information inside them.

 

The sentence should always make sense without the parenthesis, whether commas, dashes or brackets are used.

Write out the following sentence again, changing the commas to brackets to make the extra information stand out more.

 

My dog, who was covered in mud, rolled himself clean on the living room carpet.

This time, change the dashes to brackets to make the sentence more formal.

 

Katie - my best friend - is moving to Glasgow next month.

Brackets have been used to add a parenthesis to the following sentence, but they are in the wrong place. Write out the sentence again properly.

 

My mum who is very small (can't see over the steering wheel) in our new car.

The brackets are in the wrong place in the following sentence, too. Write out the sentence again properly.

 

My great grandad who is (nearly one hundred years old) still lives in his own home.

Insert the parenthesis (who was very nervous) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jayden climbed the steps onto the stage and began to sing.

Insert the parenthesis (more frightened than she had ever been in her life) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jasmine hid behind the door.

Insert the parenthesis (his twin sons) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jonny and Matty are coming home from university tomorrow.

Brackets can also be used to emphasise a point or show the writer's thoughts.

 

My sister Elise has just failed her driving test (again).

 

The sentence would make sense without the brackets, but adding brackets emphasises the fact that Elise has failed her test at least once before. It is an informal use of parenthesis.

 

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer's aunt usually forgets his birthday.

 

My aunt Jemima remembered my birthday this year for once.

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer is not very confident about passing her exam.

 

I will pass my piano exam this time I hope.

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer is very relieved that her dog came home.

 

Lily finally came home last night thank goodness after I had almost given up hope.

  • Question 1

Write out the following sentence again, changing the commas to brackets to make the extra information stand out more.

 

My dog, who was covered in mud, rolled himself clean on the living room carpet.

CORRECT ANSWER
My dog (who was covered in mud) rolled himself clean on the living room carpet.
  • Question 2

This time, change the dashes to brackets to make the sentence more formal.

 

Katie - my best friend - is moving to Glasgow next month.

CORRECT ANSWER
Katie (my best friend) is moving to Glasgow next month.
  • Question 3

Brackets have been used to add a parenthesis to the following sentence, but they are in the wrong place. Write out the sentence again properly.

 

My mum who is very small (can't see over the steering wheel) in our new car.

CORRECT ANSWER
My mum (who is very small) can't see over the steering wheel in our new car.
  • Question 4

The brackets are in the wrong place in the following sentence, too. Write out the sentence again properly.

 

My great grandad who is (nearly one hundred years old) still lives in his own home.

CORRECT ANSWER
My great grandad (who is nearly one hundred years old) still lives in his own home.
  • Question 5

Insert the parenthesis (who was very nervous) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jayden climbed the steps onto the stage and began to sing.

CORRECT ANSWER
Jayden (who was very nervous) climbed the steps onto the stage and began to sing.
  • Question 6

Insert the parenthesis (more frightened than she had ever been in her life) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jasmine hid behind the door.

CORRECT ANSWER
Jasmine (more frightened than she had ever been in her life) hid behind the door.
EDDIE SAYS
The extra information could also be added to the beginning or end of the sentence without brackets, but then it would not be a parenthesis.
  • Question 7

Insert the parenthesis (his twin sons) into the following sentence and write it out again. Think carefully about where the parenthesis should go.

 

Jonny and Matty are coming home from university tomorrow.

CORRECT ANSWER
Jonny and Matty (his twin sons) are coming home from university tomorrow.
  • Question 8

Brackets can also be used to emphasise a point or show the writer's thoughts.

 

My sister Elise has just failed her driving test (again).

 

The sentence would make sense without the brackets, but adding brackets emphasises the fact that Elise has failed her test at least once before. It is an informal use of parenthesis.

 

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer's aunt usually forgets his birthday.

 

My aunt Jemima remembered my birthday this year for once.

CORRECT ANSWER
My aunt Jemima remembered my birthday this year (for once).
  • Question 9

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer is not very confident about passing her exam.

 

I will pass my piano exam this time I hope.

CORRECT ANSWER
I will pass my piano exam this time (I hope).
  • Question 10

Add brackets to the following sentence to emphasise the fact that the writer is very relieved that her dog came home.

 

Lily finally came home last night thank goodness after I had almost given up hope.

CORRECT ANSWER
Lily finally came home last night (thank goodness) after I had almost given up hope.
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