Why capital letters and full stops matter



“Capital letters and full stops don’t matter any more!” announced my youngest nephew during a homeschool lesson.


The news quickly filtered through the family grapevine to his Grammar Geek and Punctuation Princess of an aunty (that’s me), who gasped for breath and nearly fell off her chair.


After I’d recovered from the shock, I knew I had to do something to change his mind. I tried a chat but he wasn’t for moving, adamant that full stops and capital letters are no longer relevant.


So I’ve turned to the form of communication I know best - blogging.


This one’s for you Big D...



If we didn’t use full stops...


We wouldn’t know where sentences end. Full stops tell us when a point has been made so we can stop and take a breath. Imagine trying to read out loud without the help of full stops. You would be gasping for breath! Reading a book would feel like running a marathon.


Or worse, imagine if you were reading silently. You’d quickly get confused and lose interest.



If we didn’t use full stops...


There would be no chance to stop and think about what we’ve just read. Full stops help our brains to take in and process messages. Imagine reading a poem without any pauses.



If we didn’t use capital letters...


Important words like names of people, places and pets would blend into the rest of your writing.


Think about the month of May, the girl’s name May, and the word may. The capital letter at the start of the month and the name help us to understand the meaning of the word.


Or Tiger the rabbit and tiger the animal. How would you tell the difference without a capital letter?



If we didn’t use capital letters...


We wouldn’t know where a sentence begins.


Just like full stops tell us where a sentence ends, capital letters tell us where one starts. I don’t know about you, but I like knowing where the chapter of my book starts and finishes.



If we didn’t use capital letters...


You would be known as plain old d. Not as impressive as Big D, is it?



If we didn’t use full stops and capital letters...


The words we say would be much less powerful. Here’s an example you’ll like:


Without

you’ll never walk alone play rocket league it’s immense


With

You’ll never walk alone.


Play Rocket League. It’s immense!


These are two separate sentences. The second examples grab your attention because they use capital letters and full stops.



If we didn’t use full stops and capital letters...


People would struggle to understand simple things. Short sentences with proper punctuation help to get important messages across quickly, like this:


Urgent. Come quickly. Help needed.



Capital letters and full stops help people communicate


Without capital letters, full stops and other clever punctuation marks, nobody would be able to read and understand books, letters, emails, posters, road signs, social media posts. The list is endless. We would live in a crazy, confusing world where nobody knows what’s happening or gets anything done.


Capital letters and full stops absolutely matter. Without them, would you be able to make any sense of this blog post?