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What Happened to Cursive?
Cursive handwriting is a unique form of personal expression. Some schools are finding cursive handwriting worthy of revitalizing. Writing in cursive decreased in popularity to being just about non-existent. Joe Helm, of the Washington Post, reports that some public and charter schools are once again embracing cursive handwriting. https://www.washingtonpost.com/
In fact, Alabama and Louisiana are the two in the line of 14 states that have passed laws in 2016 mandating cursive handwriting instruction (Karen Matthews/AP TIME Staff). I am so glad to see a comeback of cursive.
As an educator, I know the value of teaching children how to write in cursive. You will see some of the reasons cursive handwriting is important below. Many of our schools today do not take the time to teach the formation of letters at all. Some of our children are on their own in this regard. Some have taken on the task of learning this form of writing on their own.
Four Reasons Children Should Learn Cursive
1.Life Sills – Signing one’s name is a life skill that every child should know. Each person’s signature is unique and it has meaning. Make sure your child can write his or her name in cursive.
2.Reading Grandmas Letters. Our children should be able to read letters or even recipes from their grandparents. This is a wonderful connection that many of our children are losing. It’s wonderful to be able to go to a recipe written by grandma or grandpa. Wonderful memories come flooding back as those recipes are read.
3.Speed-Being able to write in cursive is faster than writing manuscript. This is of particular benefit as children grow older and need to be able to write notes in class.
4.Original Documents-Many of our original documents were written by our founding fathers in a type of cursive and our children need to be able to read these documents. It is good for them to be able to read documents like the Constitution for him or herself. They need to be able to read those documents in order to know what
It is easy to see the importance of cursive handwriting. Here is a resource for printable sheets that can be used in teaching cursive.
Phonics and Cursive Handwriting Connection
The nature of cursive writing connects the letters to each other. This gives the student time to focus on the formation of the letters, the sound of individual letters, as well as letter combinations. This is the foundation of phonics and reading.
Cursive handwriting is particularly helpful for the dyslexic student. Some letters are easily confused when printed. These letters are shaped differently when formed in cursive. Students focus on text rather than figuring out letters.
Having good handwriting takes practice. Establishing the habit of practicing something is good for our children and it is good for us as adults. Habits help to make our lives run more smoothly and they can help us master something. Just think about becoming the master of that chocolate cake when you practice saying no to it often enough. (But that is a little off topic.:)
Cursive handwriting is personal. Each person has peculiarities in the execution of the letters. This is the beauty of cursive. In the grand scheme of things, handwriting doesn’t take a long time to teach. Much of the instruction is a matter of practice. Teachers are taking 15 minutes out of the day to show children the strokes and then providing time for practice. This can be included in their homework as well.
Cursive handwriting is something worth hanging onto in our schools.
Do your children get to learn cursive handwriting at school? Do they ask to learn how to write cursive? Put your thoughts in the comment section.