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Do i use a capital letter at the start of a sentence if i am writing a list.

My daughter came home with an appalling spelling test result and i asked her why she did so bad. her reason was that the teacher marked her answers wrong BECAUSE she put a capital letter at the start of each word and not lower case. the teacher didn't ask her not to write in capital letters either.
(so her work for like this: Eg. 1. Language
2. Image etc.)

Was her teacher right in marking them answers wrong or not?

If she was could you find me some evidence on a English grammar site so i have proof to show her.

thank you for your time
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That's a little bit ridiculous.

Use of an initial capital letter is not a spelling mistake.

If someone were to Tell me that the word tell is spelt incorrectly in this sentence, I'd ask them to look up the word "spelt" in a dictionary.
Comments  
Well, first of all, in your message,
1) The word (pronoun) "i" is always capitalized.
2) The word "because" not capitalized.
3) The first word of a sentence is always capitalized.

I would ask whether the test was also supposed to cover capitalization. For instance, if the teacher had also covered capitalization rules in the lesson, then I think she would be justified in marking off for capitalizing the 2 words you listed. The only exception is if it was the title of a book, magazine, story, essay, etc..

If you just want an argument to make, then you can claim that it is the first word of a sentence (although an incomplete one), and therefore it would require capitalization.

If you want to read up on it, here are some sites:

http://www.gpoaccess.gov/stylemanual/2000/chap03.pdf

http://www.angelfire.com/ks/teachme/capitalization.html

http://www.kimskorner4teachertalk.com/writing/conventions/capitalization.html

I recommend the first one.

Good Luck. I would also be upset if I were in your daughters situation. Of course I did take a professor to the Dean of my college once for giving me a 99 instead of a 100. I won. Emotion: smile
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 ryan smith's reply was promoted to an answer.
Hi, If my child was marked down because she used a capital letter for words in a spelling test, I’d be angry with the teacher. When I went to school, my spelling exercises tested for spelling not style. However, if your child is a high school student and if the teacher was marking hard, then maybe… In any case, there is information about how to write words in a list on the internet. It comes from a component of Merriam-Webster’s Unabridged resource called Style Guide. The relevant section is called Lists and Outlines. I’ve dumped more information than you need. I hope the information helps explain issues related to stylistic conventions in the United States.
If you get bored before you reach the end, then maybe the following section is best:
Items that are syntactically dependent on the words that introduce them often begin with a lowercase letter and end with a comma or semicolon just as in
a run-in series in an ordinary sentence.
However, you could argue that a spelling test could be considered to be like an outline. In the case of an outline, then capital letters are appropriate:
Outlines standardly use Roman numerals, capitalized letters, Arabic numerals, and lowercase letters, in that order. Each numeral or letter is followed
by a period, and each item is capitalized.
My own opinion is that the teacher’s style is unhelpful and discouraging.
Sincerely, Wu

Here is a dump from the Merriam-Webster Style Guide
21. Both run-in and vertical lists are often numbered. In run-in numbered lists—that is, numbered lists that form part of a normal-looking sentence—each
item is preceded by a number (or, less often, an italicized letter) enclosed in parentheses. The items are separated by commas if they are brief and unpunctuated;
if they are complex or punctuated, they are separated by semicolons. The entire list is introduced by a colon if it is preceded by a full clause, and often
when it is not.
Among the fastest animals with measured maximum speeds are (1) the cheetah, clocked at 70 mph; (2) the pronghorn antelope, at 61 mph; (3) the lion, at 50
mph; (4) the quarter horse, at 47 mph; and (5) the elk, at 45 mph.

The new medical dictionary has several special features: (a) common variant spellings; (b) examples of words used in context; (c) abbreviations, combining
forms, prefixes, and suffixes; and (d) brand names for drugs and their generic equivalents.
22. In vertical lists, each number is followed by a period; the periods align vertically. Runover lines usually align under the item's first word. Each
item may be capitalized, especially if the items are syntactically independent of the words that introduce them.
The English peerage consists of five ranks, listed here in descending order:
Duke (duchess)
Marquess (marchioness)
Earl (countess)
Viscount (viscountess)
Baron (baroness)
The listed items end with periods (or question marks) when they are complete sentences, and also often when they are not.
We require answers to the following questions:
Does the club intend to engage bands to perform in the future?
Will any bands be permitted to play past midnight on weekends?
Are there plans to install proper acoustic insulation?
Items that are syntactically dependent on the words that introduce them often begin with a lowercase letter and end with a comma or semicolon just as in
a run-in series in an ordinary sentence.
Among the courts that are limited to special kinds of cases are
1. probate courts, for the estates of deceased persons;
2. commercial courts, for business cases;
3. juvenile courts, for cases involving children under 18; and
4. traffic courts, for minor cases involving highway and motor vehicle violations.
A vertical list may also be unnumbered, or may use bullets (•) in place of numerals, especially where the order of the items is not important.
Chief among the advances in communication were these 19th-century inventions:
Morse's telegraph
Daguerre's camera
Bell's telephone
Edison's phonograph
This book covers in detail:
• Punctuation
• Capitalization and italicization
• Numbers
• Abbreviations
• Grammar and composition
• Word usage
23. Outlines standardly use Roman numerals, capitalized letters, Arabic numerals, and lowercase letters, in that order. Each numeral or letter is followed
by a period, and each item is capitalized.
The United States from 1816 to 1850
Era of mixed feelings
Effects of the War of 1812
National disunity
The economy
Transportation revolution
Waterways
Railroads
Beginnings of industrialization
The Civil War and Reconstruction, 1850-77
I agree witht he teacher that marks a student's spelling words incorrectly for capitalization when the student is in the second (or third) grade or higher; because at this level, a child has been taught and is to practice distinguishing between a proper noun and an improper noun. A child need to know that the word 'every' should not be capitalized because it is an improper noun. On the other hand, the word 'Christmas' should be capitalized because it is the official name (proper noun) of a holiday.

/ndg
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