A grammar lesson full of interest, energy and laughter is a joy to a teacher's heart.
You might be teaching about dependent and independent clauses/complex vs. compound sentences…whatever, but sentence #2 will definitely grab the attention of the students.
Sentence #2 could easily turn into an entire series of practice sentences (While Susan was reading her texts, Ralph came and sat next to her. Susan, ignoring Ralph, continued to look at her phone. Taking a deep breath, Ralph opened his mouth to say hello.) Trust me, they will remember Ralph and Susan all year.
Another way to increase interest is to use the students’ names in your sentences of romantic relationships. I created a scenario in which we used sentences about one of my students falling in love and marrying a girl named Betty. We used the Betty story line all year.
The following year students continued the Betty-drama on their own. I couldn’t get them to stop-Betty kept popping up in the sentences my students wrote! I was thrilled! A grammar lesson full of interest, energy and laughter is a joy to a teacher’s heart.
A side note: Violence is also a way to add interest. I don’t condone violence normally, but we’re talking about Looney Tunes-type violence. Inevitably, if my students are writing complex sentences about my student and Betty, Betty will push my student off a mountain. Usually we can “resurrect” my student in another sentence and all is well until he runs over Betty with a garbage truck. I think you get the idea.
My advice: Skip the examples in the books and worksheets and make your own. Give the students a prompt and see what happens. The intrigue of love is guaranteed to alter the interest level your students have in reading, writing, listening and speaking in the target language.