Just like summertime temperatures, the cursive debate is heating up — especially now that the newly established Common Core standards don’t include the curly, looped handwriting style children have learned in penmanship classes for generations. In response, some state legislatures are seeking to make it compulsory, like North Carolina where the senate passed a bill to make cursive a requirement in public schools. Those who argue for cursive insist that it teaches fine motor skills, is faster and more efficient than printed handwriting, and that it enhances the creative process and has other cognitive benefits. While the topic is polarizing, there are some people who fall into the middle, like Kate Gladstone, a handwriting expert and educator quoted on the topic of handwriting in publications as diverse as The New York Times to the Journal of the American Medical Association. Gladstone believes that cursive should be taught in our schools – but only to be read, not written. Should educators take the time to teach children how to first draw and eventually to write these elaborate letters when there is so much more substantive curriculum?
What’s more, most adults abandon cursive writing for a hybrid of mostly print letters joined occasionally in a cursive style. Handwriting matters, she says, and offers fine motor skills and cognitive benefits whether in cursive or not. Get the high stakes testing out of elementary schools, and we’ll have time to teach cursive writing again! I think that teaching cursive is important to the extent that the student can read it, and also be able to at least sign their name using it, or a hybrid of it and printing.
I understand where you’re coming from ,but I am a highschool student and I dont use cursive for any of my classes. Many of the comments above seem to equate being able to write in cursive with being able to write.
My high school students cannot read anything I write because it is not taught to them previously, and if I give them copies of primary documents such as the Deceleration of Independence or any of Jefferson’s letters, they cannot read it. As a third grade teacher who recently made the decision along with my administration to do away with cursive instruction, this is a poignant topic. I have always understood that it was necessary to make strong connections in brain development for the young child, outside of all of the other arguments for functionality in the real world-which I agree with also. The current issue of Psychology Today has an article about the benefits of brain development and cursive by Dr. BTW, why doesn’t the article mention that actual studies have shown that not just teachers, but the fastest and most legible handwriters in general, don’t use Cursive some other style?
Though my sixth grade teacher bemoaned the fact that my cursive writing would never be more than C+, I have easily used cursive wrtiing my entire life. The loopy Palmer Method most of us learned “way back when” is not he ONLY cursive handwriting form! A study at the University of Washington is following a group of students doing creative writing, some on computers and some using handwriting.
I think the real reason is that some parents and educators are tired of fighting with students.
My 10 year old grandson had a birthday party at which he received several cards with money or gift cards. Further research demonstrates that the fastest, clearest handwriters are neither the print-writers nor the cursive writers. Reading cursive matters, but even children can be taught to read writing that they are not taught to produce.
Cursive’s cheerleaders sometimes imagine that cursive has taught them grammar, etiquette, or finesse — that it has made them stunningly smart — or that it has granted them other blessings which are no more abundant among users of cursive users than among the rest or the human race. Questioned document examiners (these are specialists in the identification of signatures, then verification of documents, etc.) inform me that the least forgeable signatures are the plainest. The individuality of print-style (or other non-cursive style) writings is further shown by this: six months into the school year, any first-grade teacher can immediately identify (from the writing on an unsigned assignment) which of her 25 or 30 students wrote it. All writing, not just cursive, is individual — just as all writing involves fine motor skills.
Mandating cursive to preserve handwriting resembles mandating stovepipe hats and crinolines to preserve the art of tailoring.
I very tine spent my half an hour to read this blog’s posts every day along with a cup of coffee.
The schools today are teaching one thing only and that is the Standards of Learning (SOLs) required by the Federal government. With havin so much written content do you ever run into any problems of plagorism or copyright infringement? The same principle applies for travelling above any specified positive level, or even oscillating around level 0.


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Supporters of the “Back to Basics” legislation, which passed 37-8 and also requires North Carolina students to memorize multiplication tables, said that cursive is important to know even in the age of keyboards and digital devices. The writing is on the wall,” Morgan Polikoff, an assistant education professor at the University of Southern California’s Rossier School of Education, argued in a New York Times opinion piece. Gladstone says no because it’s not a worthwhile return on the investment of time and energy. In 2012, handwriting teachers were surveyed at a conference hosted by Zaner-Bloser, a publisher of cursive textbooks. But she insists that children should be taught efficient handwriting, which research shows is most legible and efficient when it combines print, or manuscript, and cursive letters. In state and federal law, Gladtone says, cursive signatures have no special legal validity over any other kind. Teach everything possible, exercise those brains, grow neurons, every little bit of knowledge helps us THINK! I use it for people I really care about on special occasions and other appropriate times.That being said, most of my day-to-day communication, including this post, is on a laptop. Speed is often the difference between getting the facts down correctly during note-taking, and trying to figure out or remember what the first part of the note referred to. It is much faster for taking notes in a class and you can write really classy thank you notes.
I appreciate the most one option I had not read anywhere else to date: to teach reading cursive without requiring the mastery of writing cursive.


Yes I understand you need cursive to sign your name and read important documents such as Declaration of Independence but I think that the Declaration of Independence will be available on the Internet.
The purpose of writing is to communicate, whether it is to fill out a job application, tax form or a note to a friend.
I only write in cursive because that is what I learned starting in 1st grade; I had a very traditional teacher in the 80s.
Our students are missing out on such a rich part of our history because they cannot read cursive at all. It is tough and sometimes it does hurt your hand, but I am 42 and the days of hurt hands are long gone, BUT I know how to write cursive. The highest speed and highest legibility in handwriting are attained by those who join only some letters, not all of them – making only the simplest of joins, omitting the rest, and using print-like shapes for letters whose printed and cursive shapes disagree.
Reading cursive can be taught in just 30 to 60 minutes — even to five- or six-year-olds, once they read ordinary print. In 2012, handwriting teachers were surveyed at a conference hosted by Zaner-Bloser, a publisher of cursive textbooks. Some users of cursive claim to have research support — citing studies that consistently prove to have been misquoted or otherwise misrepresented by the claimant. In state and federal law, cursive signatures have no special legal validity over any other kind. That is why, six months into the school year, any first-grade teacher can immediately identify (from print-writing on unsigned work) which student produced it. Even when the bearded dragon baby is at age of 8 weeks, they are considered hatching or very young.
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In the case of learning cursive writing, the brain develops functional specialization that integrates both sensation, movement control, and thinking. What troubled me about students not using or reading cursive was that they also mixed upper and lower case letters randomly and ignored punctuation and spelling. The very connectedness stimulates that activity of making connections with various bits of data. For instance, it has been documented that legible cursive writing averages no faster than printed handwriting of equal or greater legibility. The modern slim sides, finishing off at 5cm add a nice European look to this Speedo swimwear and the slim sides offered by these swim briefs will provide more exposure for your sun tan. Somehow, in the midst of his crammed schedule, he found time to film a few more scenes as Hobbs in the new movie, and The Rock has posted an image of himself ready for action on the film. This Stratocaster's neck is made from Maple, with a 25.5" scale and a "C" shape profile, the fingerboard is Rosewood with 21 medium jumbo frets.
The majority, 55 percent, wrote a hybrid: some elements resembling print-writing, others resembling cursive. For the future, my son will probably see the day when only artists and musicians have the fine motor skills to write cursive. The majority — 55 percent — wrote a hybrid: some elements resembling print-writing, others resembling cursive.
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