A Language Arts Multimedia Mini Lesson for Hyphens/Dashes

language arts

Overview language arts

Using Hyphens and Dashes is one of the 30 MicroLessons (mini lessons) available in the series, Language Arts Presenter.

Just connect your computer to a digital projector or SMART Board, select a student to operate the mouse and let Mary, the avatar, teach your kids a lesson on Using Hyphens and Dashes. 

This MicroLesson (like all of the others in the series) comes with a word search activity and a crossword puzzle based entirely on the presentation--the words found in the word search provide the word bank for the crossword puzzle. 

Therefore, this presentation along with the time required to complete both puzzles will require 50-60 classroom minutes.

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MicroLesson 22 Details

MicroLesson 22
Using Hyphens and Dashes
Presentation Time: 25-30 min.
By the end of this MicroLesson, students will be able to use a hyphen to...

  • separate the parts of a word at the end of the line.
  • punctuate numbers from twenty-one through ninety-nine.
  • punctuate fractions.
  • punctuate certain compound nouns.
  • punctuate compound adjectives used before a noun.
  • separate the first three digits in a telephone number from the last four. 

Students will also be able to use a dash to...

  • express a range of values.
  • add an explanatory word, phrase, or thought to a sentence. 

Finally, students will recognize correct punctuation usage in 15 sample sentences. 

Using Hyphens and Dashes, Full Version comes with a word search, and a crossword puzzle.  

I have thoroughly tested this MicroLesson with actual students in real-life, public,  middle school classrooms--the vast majority of students became engaged, responsive, and productive (even the Ne'r-Do-Wells).


Both of the screenshots below are samples from the instruction portion of Using Hyphens and Dashes.

These screenshots show how one of the questions and its associated answer appear in Using Hyphens and Dashes:

PDF Puzzles

Here is the word search activity for Using Hyphens and Dashes.

The words found in the activity above become the word bank for this crossword puzzle:

Noteworthy Notes

Like all of the MicroLessons in the Language Arts Presenter series, Using Hyphens and Dashes includes...

  • definitions and examples.
  • direct instruction.
  • a summary of the instruction.
  • practice quizzes ranging from 5 to 15 questions.
  • an on-screen answer key.
  • a word search and crossword puzzle to extend the mini lesson. 

Teachers report that during MicroLessons, they...

  • appoint students to be mouse operators while they roam the classroom, keeping a wary eye on the knuckleheads.
  • become dynamic partners with the avatars, giving additional examples of concepts, checking for comprehension, and reading questions and answer choices orally to the class.
  • record scores, grade papers, or even work on lesson plans. 

All of the titles in the Language Arts Presenter series are accessible with any of the major web browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari.  As a result, these apps are compatible with all versions of both Windows and Mac.

Free Download Details and Link

Using Hyphens and Dashes, Free Version is...

  • complete in every regard.
  • fully operational.
  • available for an unlimited time trial. 

The "Free Trial Version" stamps are a necessary annoyance. 

When you consider the fact that I spent two and a half years of my life developing these MicroLessons, I would sincerely hope that you would agree that giving them away completely free of charge is not a plausible option.

Download: Using Hyphens and Dashes, Free Version

Full Download Details and Link

Using Hyphens and Dashes, Full Version...

  • is exactly the same as the free version.
  • is completely devoid of all "Free Trial Version" stamps.
  • comes with a word search and a crossword puzzle. 

Both versions of Using Hyphens and Dashes are accessible with any of the major web browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari.  As a result, these apps are compatible with all versions of both Windows and Mac.

Purchase: Using Hyphens and Dashes (Order in the USA)

Purchase: Using Hyphens and Dashes (Order outside of the USA)


The Mechanics Bundle contains all eight Mechanics MicroLessons from the Language Arts Presenter series.

If purchased individually, the total cost for Using Hyphens and Dashes along with its 7 companions would be $34.65. The bundle is now available for the much lower cost of $19.75--a savings of over 50%!

The titles in The Mechanics Bundle are as follows:

  • Captialization, Part 1
  • Capitalization, Part 2
  • Using Commas, Part 1
  • Using Commas, Part 2
  • Using Colons and Semicolons
  • Using Quotation Marks
  • Using Apostrophes
  • Using Hyphens and Dashes

The Mechanics Bundle comes with a word search and a crossword puzzle for each MicroLesson.

MicroLesson 22: Using Hyphens and Dashes, Full Version by Chad Manis is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License

Return to Daily Teaching Tools Home from Language Arts Presenter: MicroLesson 22

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