How to Teach Students How to Answer Questions in Complete Sentences

Students need to learn how to answer questions in complete sentences with correct grammar and punctuation.

Most children begin writing in kindergarten. By the end of the school year, they learn the basics of sentence composition. Along with handwriting, students should master the skill of answering a question with a complete sentence. This is a crucial writing skill. Children need to have an understanding of the elements of good writing as they begin composing paragraphs and essays. Teachers should emphasize that the correct word order and sentence structure make their writing clear to the reader.

Write a question on the board. Begin with a simple question like, "What is the name of our school?" Underline the question word,"what."

Discuss each word in the sentence. Be sure the class understands what the question is asking. Although the question is easy for you to understand, younger students may need clarity.

Demonstrate how to use words from the question to form the answer. Draw two lines under the phrase "the name of our school" in the question. Explain that these are the words that will begin the sentence that answers the question.

Write the answer sentence under the question. Emphasize that the first word of the sentence begins with an uppercase letter. Also point out that questions end with a question mark, but the answer will end with a period.

Proofread sentence to be sure it answers the question. Read the sentence aloud then have the class also read it. Repeat these steps with more complex questions as children get comfortable with this process.

Karen Hollowell has been teaching since 1994. She has taught English/literature and social studies in grades 7-12 and taught kindergarten for nine years. She currently teaches fourth grade reading/language and social studies. Hollowell earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Mississippi and her Master of Arts in elementary education from Alcorn State University.