Monday, June 25, 2012

Am I The Only One That Still Writes In Cursive?

I have noticed a lot lately that it seems that I am the only one at my workplace that still writes in cursive, and I have quite a few people come up and ask me what it is that I wrote because they can not read it. I have found this really odd, and somewhat heart breaking to be honest. You may be wandering why it is heart breaking, but my reason is because it seems like a part of my history, or should I say American history is being erased? When I entered the fourth grade, I had a writing class that taught us the basics of writing in cursive. I felt so  sophisticated to write in this new writing form, but do they even teach cursive in school anymore? I love how the letters glide together so fast when writing in cursive, where as with print it seems to take longer for me to even write my name! Does that make sense to you?

 Many years ago handwritten communication was the only way for individuals to express themselves. So logically, good handwriting, and specifically the highly personalized, more intricate cursive format, was an important skill. Poor handwriting, like poor speaking, could make you look stupid, lazy or ignorant. But in this culture of apps and OMGs is, at best, up for debate. Just because we have spellcheck, we don’t stop teaching spelling. Spelling and grammar checks should be used as guides, not as the definitive on right and wrong. We all know the subtleties the spell check can miss. A few misspelled words or improper usage can make you look unprofessional at best or at worst, uneducated. Being able to write nicely isn’t something you can pick up easily later in life, just in case you decide maybe it is a skill worth having after all. And in this day and age, a handwritten note certainly will get someone’s attention, as it’s definitely not the norm anymore.

 While cursive isn’t exactly necessary for a fulfilled life, I hate to see it go entirely. Can’t we build a little time in for both learning cursive and keyboarding? Yes, I know all the standardized test preparations take up a lot of time, but that shouldn’t be an excuse. I have heard of plenty of schools no longer emphasizing cursive, but I haven’t heard of too many schools offering keyboarding in lower grades. And in lower grades, many teachers are already asking that papers and book reports be turned in typed. Both skills — cursive and keyboarding — are valuable assets for our children and worthy of taking the time to learn while they are young.

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Thank you all for all of your sweet messages! I love reading them, so keep them coming!