Posted by: karenevoss | July 24, 2016

Penmanship

When you’re young, around the age of starting kindergarten, you learn how to print the alphabet and numbers using long, fat pencils with big erasers designed for smaller hands to grasp, a beginners tool. Our letters and numbers took up lots of space on lined paper (two solid lines for tall and capitals and a dotted line for lowercase). We printed thick and sometimes illegible letters and with time, they got easier to print and read (though not always). As we learned how to spell using phonics and began to read, we formed words and the spell checker we used came in a big book called a dictionary (if you got lucky mom and dad helped until you heard the words, go look it up).

It wasn’t long until we wrote with ease until you learned cursive and D’Nealian handwriting. You discovered how to connect letters, but first you had to learn how to write the alphabet, again. Cursive handwriting flows from your pen or pencil joining one letter to another. Just like printing, you won’t always have legible writing. You can take after me who sometimes prints and writes within the same sentence or word (it requires a certain amount of talent). The written draft of this post, doesn’t have all the letters connecting, but it’s still readable.

I’m hearing that not all school age children learn cursive handwriting anymore. How can this be and why? If they don’t learn cursive then how will they learn to sign their names for checks (yes people still use them)? How can their signature be verified for credit cards if the cards aren’t signed? What about signing for your driver’s license? Will X really be used to sign contracts, mortgages, and anything else if children don’t learn cursive handwriting? Can they even register to vote if they don’t have a signature?

Think about it.

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