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(AZCentral)   With all the things kids have to learn today in order to be competitive in a global economy, why are schools still teaching cursive writing?   (azcentral.com ) divider line
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4463 clicks; posted to Main » on 27 Jul 2014 at 8:21 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-07-27 10:03:19 PM  
They tried to teach me cursive when I was in elementary school. Didn't work. Still write in shaky tombstone print to this day.
 
2014-07-27 10:05:34 PM  

DeathRaySanta: Harry_Seldon: DeathRaySanta: Guilty_plea_bargain: gingerjet: The most useless thing I was taught in school?  Cursive writing.  The most useful thing I was taught in school?  Keyboarding.

The most useless thing I was taught in school. Algebra.

Here's what somebody pointed out to me, many summers ago:

Have somebody stand a short distance away, and toss a baseball to you.

You track the ball's trajectory, and successfully catch it.

Congradulations! You've just done introductory trig.

Actually, it is Calculus. Newtonian mechanics to be specific.

Ahhh. Ok. Well, perhaps that would explain why I kinda suck at baseball :)


That's okay. Newton was known to be a a terrible ball player.
 
2014-07-27 10:06:33 PM  

Fireproof: I would hunt-and-peck while typing until I discovered Fark my Freshman year of college.


In 7th grade, all of us had to take Typing. It was 1989, there were IBM Selectrics, computers were not really considerd ready for prime time yet. I didn't learn much from the class because the teacher was pretty terrible. I didn't really learn to type well until several years later, when I wrote a novel on my dad's SE/30. Practice, practice, practice every day = eventual 70 wpm.

I also taught myself how to write in italics, blackletter, and Fëanorian Tengwar. None of these are really that useful. Kind of fun though....
crow202.org
crow202.org
 
2014-07-27 10:08:33 PM  
Following the logic of the headline, schools should have classes on typing with 2 thumbs on a cell phone.

/while driving and drinking a coffee
 
2014-07-27 10:09:22 PM  

Fireproof: brownribbon: gingerjet: The most useless thing I was taught in school?  Cursive writing.  The most useful thing I was taught in school?  Keyboarding.

I found both to be fairly useless. I only use cursive to sign my name (and that looks terrible) and I have always been a quicker, better typer with chicken-pecking rather than actual keyboarding.

Fun story: I would hunt-and-peck while typing until I discovered Fark my Freshman year of college. I'd get so riled up by flamewars that I started angrily attacking the keyboard with both hands.


My method of chicken-pecking has always utilized both hands. I just don't use the "formal" method of typing I was taught. Almost saw the principal once because I questioned why we were taking typing classes.
 
2014-07-27 10:12:21 PM  
earlyamericanists.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-07-27 10:12:24 PM  
news.ucdavis.edu
See what sort of stuff you get from people who write in cursive.
And make 'em doing it in needlepoint so they won't complain about the actual writing part.
www.fontscape.com
 
2014-07-27 10:12:56 PM  
www.senatorhill.com

Yeah, we should be able to read the original, not just trust the "translation" into print.
 
2014-07-27 10:13:45 PM  

wademh: [news.ucdavis.edu image 518x287]
See what sort of stuff you get from people who write in cursive.
And make 'em doing it in needlepoint so they won't complain about the actual writing part.
[www.fontscape.com image 432x288]


DAMN YOU...by just a few seconds
 
2014-07-27 10:14:21 PM  
HexMadroom,
Excepting my check/CC receipt signing, all of my handwriting is military block lettering. if you saw my sorry cursive, you'd realize it's a HUGE increase in legibility.


That was where I was going, the signature aspect. Right now the persons signature seems to be default mechanism for contracts, although I am not an internet lawyer and suspect that anyone that claims to be a lawyer on the internet is really a dog.

I am aware that people can put an 'X' if they cannot read/write. This is more of an somewhat rare exception. However is a block printing of your name a signature for legal purposes? Can people learn to write their name is ancient Egyptian or Mayan and define this as their signature? Is block lettering even a unique mark for signing a mortage or bank loan?

An interesting boing boing test on credit card signatures:
http://boingboing.net/2005/06/03/nobody-cares-what-yo.html
 
2014-07-27 10:15:11 PM  
Small muscle control and concentration are probably the only defenses left for teaching it.  It shouldn't be a major part of the curriculum but you should still show them how rudimentary plumbing used to work before putting them on a keyboard.
 
2014-07-27 10:16:09 PM  
I gave up cursive and lower case when I hit high school.
 
2014-07-27 10:17:34 PM  
www.zodiackiller.com
 
2014-07-27 10:17:53 PM  
My sister wrights so beautifully, my mother was always proud. I, on the other hand, wrote so badly that even I could not read it. Soon my signature is going to flat line----------------.

My son's was so bad we used to scan his homework and print it. The teacher asked me to have him print his work. After a few days she said to have him use the computer.
 
2014-07-27 10:18:25 PM  

DarkVader: Wangiss: aerojockey: ArcadianRefugee: because people don't seem to care about cursive, and so don't use it, and thus can't read it, we should stop trying to teach it to them, thus furthering the cycle.

Great logic. Like, since our math scores are falling in the global sense, because people don't seem to care about it, and thus can't understand it, we should stop trying to teach it to them, thus furthering the cycle.

False assumption on #2.  Lots of people care about math.  Universities and jobs both require it.  Very few people care about cursive.  That's the difference.  Yes, the fact that no one cares about cursive and no one writes it anymore and is therefore useless is reason enough not to force anyone to learn it.  Interested parties can take it as an archaeology elective if they want to.

False assumption. Millions of people in anglophone countries all around the world still write in cursive.

No they don't.  Not in real life.

It's used in school classes.  It's then rapidly discarded once a teacher is no longer demanding that obsolete writing style.


37 of adults do. It's a handy way to differentiate yourselves from children in this not-real life we cursive writers inhabit.
 
2014-07-27 10:18:35 PM  

unyon: It's probably not as important to be able to write cursive as it is to be able to read it.


^^This.^^

You'll encounter it and know how to read it but these days it doesn't matter if you can produce it or not except in a few specialized areas.  Most people simply don't need to write that much other than on a computer.

I've got 6 figures worth of posts (and few are one-liners) out there on the web--but my cursive has atrophied from lack of use to the point that a couple of years ago I decided to abandon it.  I doubt I write anything beyond a name/number by hand even once a month.
 
2014-07-27 10:18:50 PM  

violentsalvation: I gave up cursive and lower case when I hit high school.


So you just write in uppercase manuscript or type everything?
 
2014-07-27 10:19:03 PM  

gingerjet: The most useless thing I was taught in school?  Cursive writing.  The most useful thing I was taught in school?  Keyboarding.


Shortly after I graduated high school my district decided that teaching keyboarding wasn't important.  WTF.  I mean, this was before the rise of using your thumbs to type on your phone, so it wasn't even like there was a competing new way to type they were adopting.

Of course, it was  a fairly decent suburban school, so maybe they just thought you'd have a secretary taking dictation?
 
2014-07-27 10:19:05 PM  

Wangiss: DarkVader: Wangiss: aerojockey: ArcadianRefugee: because people don't seem to care about cursive, and so don't use it, and thus can't read it, we should stop trying to teach it to them, thus furthering the cycle.

Great logic. Like, since our math scores are falling in the global sense, because people don't seem to care about it, and thus can't understand it, we should stop trying to teach it to them, thus furthering the cycle.

False assumption on #2.  Lots of people care about math.  Universities and jobs both require it.  Very few people care about cursive.  That's the difference.  Yes, the fact that no one cares about cursive and no one writes it anymore and is therefore useless is reason enough not to force anyone to learn it.  Interested parties can take it as an archaeology elective if they want to.

False assumption. Millions of people in anglophone countries all around the world still write in cursive.

No they don't.  Not in real life.

It's used in school classes.  It's then rapidly discarded once a teacher is no longer demanding that obsolete writing style.

37 of adults do. It's a handy way to differentiate yourselves from children in this not-real life we cursive writers inhabit.


LOL 37% of course.
 
2014-07-27 10:19:34 PM  

gunsmack: Betep: Because we should be teaching children less an archaic skill that has no marketability in a job search. That will make them better.
/Really?

// Can you type 80 WPM?
/// Nope, but my penmanship is pretty sweet.


I just wrote notes to Housekeeping, Maintenance and Audit.
I also left a handwritten note that we need more ink for the printers and pens.
/Archaic?
 
2014-07-27 10:19:55 PM  
Checks?  LOL
 
2014-07-27 10:22:44 PM  
What's the problem with teaching cursive?
 
2014-07-27 10:23:23 PM  

toejam: [www.zodiackiller.com image 640x895]



That is the worst word jumble!
 
2014-07-27 10:23:55 PM  
The argument is not whether cursive is useful at all so much as how useful it is considering the time spent on it and not on something else.

I haven't had to write more than my name in cursive since middle school, including throughout an Ivy league education and a Ph.D., so it clearly is no longer essential for even many "learned" lifestyles.  The ability to read cursive has come in more handy, but an adult with any sense of pattern recognition should be able to pick it up practically by osmosis.  And sure it teaches fine motor skills, but so do a number of things.  Learning it sure as heck didn't improve my nor many of my schoolmates handwriting in the long run.

Handwriting and critical thinking skills have no correlation I've personally ever observed.  Complete shotgun pattern.
 
2014-07-27 10:25:17 PM  
My 5yo niece saw me writing in cursive and thought I had a magic pen. My brother printed out some work sheets from the internet and she now practices cursive letters.
 
2014-07-27 10:25:40 PM  

Wangiss: But being able to write legibly and quickly is as valuable as speed reading, so if someone can't, I recommend they learn. It takes a few dedicated hours of practice and being comfortable with self-criticism.


I have massive difficulty not "hearing" what I write/read. It takes me weeks to read a book. That said, I remember a *lot* more of it than my wife (who can speed read, it would seem) and, in general, have better retention skill than most folk. I ended up dumping cursive almost entirely because my writing is mostly in mathematical formula. When I write, it's required to be in formal paper format nowadays. Multiple edits are also necessary, so handwriting would be nothing short of a waste of a LOT of time.

In the end, I'm generally in accord; most folk don't need cursive writing skills anymore, especially when things such as grammar, spelling, mathematics, critical thinking et. al. are ALSO falling by the wayside. A priority shift is in order. Let's get the kids reading a few cursive books etc, but let the writing go elective.

/I tried reading the U.S. Declaration of Independence. It's not trivial.
 
2014-07-27 10:26:27 PM  

daffy: My sister wrights so beautifully, my mother was always proud. I, on the other hand, wrote so badly that even I could not read it. Soon my signature is going to flat line----------------.

My son's was so bad we used to scan his homework and print it. The teacher asked me to have him print his work. After a few days she said to have him use the computer.


What does your sister wright? And what's that got to do with cursive writing?
Sorry for the spelling lame but, people judge each other. Potential employers judge, bosses judge, co-workers judge, clients judge, employees judge. Cursive is another communication skill, like spelling, grammar, construction. Communication skills serve you in ways you may never realize, nor never have anticipated.
Giving up on something as basic as writing skills is a bit like getting a neck tattoo. It advertises something about you that you may not always want to advertise.
 
2014-07-27 10:27:05 PM  

Guilty_plea_bargain: violentsalvation: I gave up cursive and lower case when I hit high school.

So you just write in uppercase manuscript or type everything?


Yeah.
 
2014-07-27 10:27:55 PM  
I actually do a lot of hand-writing (e.g. test logs, engineering notes, office/meeting room whiteboards) and am often complimented on it.  I feel for those that find themselves having to write something in front of a group and all they have is chicken-scratch.

Oddly, depending on where in the word it falls, adjacent lettering and whether or not it's a capital, I'll write a "d" four different ways.

/csb
 
2014-07-27 10:28:06 PM  

johnson442: One must know how to signature.


3.bp.blogspot.comwww.cartoonstock.comprepgenie.com.aufc08.deviantart.netimg.fark.netnotapunkrocker.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-07-27 10:29:04 PM  

Fart_Machine: What's the problem with teaching cursive?


It takes away from test preparation which impacts school funding.
 
2014-07-27 10:29:06 PM  
My local school system just stopped teaching it. I have no idea why, my cursive is much more legible than my print. I have not heard justification for this move. Laziness?
 
2014-07-27 10:30:58 PM  

Harry_Seldon: DeathRaySanta: Guilty_plea_bargain: gingerjet: The most useless thing I was taught in school?  Cursive writing.  The most useful thing I was taught in school?  Keyboarding.

The most useless thing I was taught in school. Algebra.

Here's what somebody pointed out to me, many summers ago:

Have somebody stand a short distance away, and toss a baseball to you.

You track the ball's trajectory, and successfully catch it.

Congradulations! You've just done introductory trig.

Actually, it is Calculus. Newtonian mechanics to be specific.


Last I checked, that is an example of physics, with trig thrown in. Trajectories are measured by angle, speed, and gravitational force.
 
2014-07-27 10:31:02 PM  

Boo_Guy: Wangiss: [japanesethegame.com image 850x729]

[fontmeme.com image 727x76]
[fontmeme.com image 712x76]
[fontmeme.com image 590x76]
[fontmeme.com image 434x76]


Wangiss: [japanesethegame.com image 850x729]


drawception.com
 
2014-07-27 10:31:29 PM  

Enemabag Jones: I am aware that people can put an 'X' if they cannot read/write. This is more of an somewhat rare exception. However is a block printing of your name a signature for legal purposes? Can people learn to write their name is ancient Egyptian or Mayan and define this as their signature? Is block lettering even a unique mark for signing a mortage or bank loan?


Yes, yes, and yes.

Frankly my signature looks nothing like cursive, and really only contains three somewhat identifiable letters out of twelve.  My last name in particular comes out looking little more than a symbol vaguely reminiscent of a half of a star, although it started as cursive and slowly degenerated.
 
2014-07-27 10:31:30 PM  
DarkVader:

I was SO looking forward to full conversion to the metric system when I was in elementary school.  It makes sense, unlike the garbage we're using now.

I was looking forward to using the metric system too. It seemed so orderly... on paper.

But here in New Zealand, when I talk about having come "7 megameters" from california, they all lose their minds. "You mean 7 thousand kilometers?" "No.. that would be a bad use of the metric system. It is 7 megameters. Saying 7 thousand kilometers is no better than saying "7 thousand thousand meters." It's stupid. It defeats the whole purpose of the metric system"

Same thing with weight. 200 milligrams? No... the metric system is clearly defined. Thais 2 decigrams.

If something is 100 meters long, it is 1 hectometer. It isn't difficult.

But, sadly, it seems that the adoption of the "metric" system is completely stalled, even in these so called "metric" countries, and even they have no idea how to use it.

So I've decided just to use the imperial system. No one measures distance between countries in inches.
 
2014-07-27 10:32:09 PM  
bridgettebooth.com
 
2014-07-27 10:32:24 PM  

danceswithcrows: Fireproof: I would hunt-and-peck while typing until I discovered Fark my Freshman year of college.

In 7th grade, all of us had to take Typing. It was 1989, there were IBM Selectrics, computers were not really considerd ready for prime time yet. I didn't learn much from the class because the teacher was pretty terrible. I didn't really learn to type well until several years later, when I wrote a novel on my dad's SE/30. Practice, practice, practice every day = eventual 70 wpm.

I also taught myself how to write in italics, blackletter, and Fëanorian Tengwar. None of these are really that useful. Kind of fun though....
[crow202.org image 400x326]
[crow202.org image 400x132]


An IBM Selectric was an amazing machine, which is why they were in production from 1960 and 1980.  Great keyboard.  IBM was always the master of making great keyboards.

Selectrics were typewriters, though some were connected to terminals as keyboards.
 
2014-07-27 10:34:51 PM  
Lets all be serious: Its a stunning conspiracy by the horse and carriage crowd to make sure our handwriting cant be OCRd, slowing the eventual take over by cyber lords.

All praise the horse and carriage; value you could understand.
 
2014-07-27 10:35:55 PM  

zero7717: They tried to teach me cursive when I was in elementary school. Didn't work. Still write in shaky tombstone print to this day.


Same here I failed miserably:

encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com
 
2014-07-27 10:36:41 PM  

eas81: [bridgettebooth.com image 850x226]


On a certain level, yes.  It's hard to define.
 
2014-07-27 10:37:08 PM  

Marcintosh: Marcintosh: Anyone can use cursive but it'll be great if they stop teaching it.  THAT way you'll be able to tell who had a private school education and who hadda settle for public school.


If you're over the age of 20 or so and private versus public schooling has any bearing whatsoever in your life, you have probably failed.

As evidence, consider this: Is the distinction between success and failure in your life based on penmanship?
 
2014-07-27 10:37:25 PM  
After you've walked three miles uphill in the snow to get to school, it's kind of nice to stretch out and relax by a pot-belly stove and practice your cursive lettering.
 
2014-07-27 10:40:21 PM  

ecmoRandomNumbers: I'm going to give you the same answer I gave my coworkers when I was teaching in Phoenix when they didn't want to teach D'Nealian writing. Those kids can produce the most beautiful graffiti. It's art. Truly.

All you need to do is apply some freaking pressure. Many of my former students have beautiful cursive writing.


And they use it every time they write out a check to buy a VCR and cassette tape deck.
 
2014-07-27 10:40:40 PM  
it never occurred to me until just now that cursive was a great way of saving ink from the bowl!
 
2014-07-27 10:42:59 PM  
Meh, i still write cursive so i remember how to do it. Actually sone of my print could be considered a hybrid.

/39
 
2014-07-27 10:45:49 PM  
Huck And Molly Ziegler
After you've walked three miles uphill in the snow to get to school, it's kind of nice to stretch out and relax by a pot-belly stove and practice your cursive lettering.


And that's the way we liked it!
s3.vidimg.popscreen.com
 
2014-07-27 10:46:47 PM  
Ill also say this...being left handed and writing cursive sucks.
 
2014-07-27 10:47:04 PM  
Cause we spend most of our time lying?, just a guess
 
2014-07-27 10:50:20 PM  

frestcrallen: eas81: [bridgettebooth.com image 850x226]

On a certain level, yes.  It's hard to define.


So what does mine say?

i.imgur.com
 
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