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Teacher Tips and Answers

Using Colons

Row Boat

A colon (:) draws readers' attention to what comes after it. Use a colon to introduce a list.

Maria is fascinated by these creatures of folklore: the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, and Yeti.

The words before the colon must form a complete sentence.

Incorrect—She dreams of going to Scotland to: explore Loch Ness, interview eye-witnesses, and photograph Nessie.

Correct—She dreams of going to Scotland to do three things: explore Loch Ness, interview eye-witnesses, and photograph Nessie.

Use a colon to introduce a formal quotation.

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