Why Teach Cursive?...

Should Cursive Be A Requirement, Elective or Not Taught in School?...

  • Requirement...

    Votes: 10 76.9%
  • Elective...

    Votes: 2 15.4%
  • Not Taught...

    Votes: 1 7.7%

  • Total voters
    13

ahachmid

Junior Member
Jul 6, 2008
2
0
0
My wife is going to become a teacher and we got into a debate over whether or not schools should spend resources and time to teach students something most of them will not use past the grade they learned it in. I personally do not use cursive for anything other than my signature (which looks like crap from lack of using cursive) but in the military everything is typed. I take notes in regular handwriting (which also looks like crap) but I am the one that reads the notes and I can read my own handwriting.
I remember struggling with cursive and being envious of the kids that could produce those little squiggles and curves so flawlessly, while I struggled to stay on the dotted letter outlines (I'm sure you all remember them).
I firmly believe that cursive, like caligraphy; will become more of a lost art form than a social norm. This is a sad fact of our society, but the age of computers, PDA and cell phones have had a huge impact on hand writing. This discussion came about when I said that I don't really even remember how to write in cursive and to show that I was serious wrote out the alphabet in lower case cursive. I couldn't remember the q or the v. I only know a few of the upper case cursive letters.
I have a 2 year old daughter and I would not argue if schools stopped teaching cursive and focused on regular handwriting and computer use. I somewhat compare learning cursive to learning a foreign language in school. It may have been cool to learn French in High School, but how often do we use it? I took 2 years of Spanish and now I can ask how someone is doing and find out where the library is.
I'm not an unintelligent person, but if I don't use something I learn, it gets replaced with more current information. My job is in the communications field, which is constantly being renovated. The equipment I install today will be obsolete by the end of the year. Why don't we upgrade the written communication techniques while we're at it?
I personally believe that teaching cursive, in any way shape or form is not only a waste of resources, but the student's time as well. I do not see cursive as being applicable in today's society and the time spent to teach it could instead be used teaching computer/technological skills. Please give your honest and open opinion on this topic and back up your arguments please.
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etceterae

PF Enthusiast
Mar 29, 2008
144
0
0
I voted "not taught" despite the fact that I regularly use cursive along with print. I only did this because judging by your other answer choices, it seemed to imply that you meant, "not taught as a separate course".

I still think that for some part of English in grade school, cursive should still be taught. In the school where I go to, we're required to analyze copies of historical documents, in which the majority are written in cursive. A few of my Regulars friends can't read it at all, which the snobbier IH/AP kids think is "dumb" of them. Either way, cursive can still come in extremely helpful, especially if the child is interested in history.

Also, it just looks prettier, and studies have shown that people regard it as being more professional (as long as it's neat). I use it whenever I want to make a good impression, but when I'm taking notes or whatnot, I use print. But I think the most important thing is to make sure that the handwriting, no matter in what style, is neat and presentable.
 

Sirk

Your Forum Mom
Apr 1, 2008
1,964
0
0
I think cursive is faster. All though elementary and middle school it was required and drilled into us. In High School they said "knock that off" and print was required. I didn't get it.
And now my handwriting in both is crap because I type everything. 20 years from now our kids will likely barely be writing at all.

But yeah, teach it. It can't hurt to know it.
 

Teresa

PF Fiend
Feb 2, 2007
1,124
0
0
60
Ohio
I voted requirement. I use cursive writing every day. It's quicker than printing, and for me, looks neater. I'm a former teacher, and teaching printing in kindergarten was no tougher for me than teaching cursive in third grade, or vice versa.
 

meow_173

PF Addict
Jan 3, 2008
3,957
0
0
36
Hamilton, Ontario
I don't use cursive. ANd we learned in like gr.3 and then i hardly used it since.

If kids want to learn, then let them, but i don't htink its necessary
 

Claire64

PF Fanatic
Mar 10, 2008
502
0
0
52
I think it should be taught in school. I know that a lot of people never use cursive, but I think everyone should have the choice. I use cursive almost all the time and my husband uses it for work but prints for everything else. As for the kids, Ryan and Sean hardly use it, but they do know how and they use it for their signature. Landon uses it a lot, because he just finished 4th grade and he was required to use it in Language Arts and History.
 

Kaytee

PF Deity
Apr 9, 2007
7,204
0
0
42
Texas
I also think it should be taught in school. The "this is the age of the computer" to me is a lame excuse. Sorry
 

Good Wolf

PF Addict
Mar 11, 2008
2,129
0
0
42
TX
I can't remember the last time I wrote anything down. I have a paperless enviroment at work.

The truth of the matter is we don't use 90% of the stuff we were taught/memorized in school. It is however better to have the knowledge and not use it then need it and not have it.
 

1dayatatime

PF Addict
Oct 3, 2007
1,754
0
0
AZ
I say yes to required. Learning anything new teaches you patience and perserverance. I love cursive. I love anything artistic. I use both. There is nothing more special than a letter from a loved one in their hand. I love seeing my mothers handwritting and especially the handwritting of a relative that has passed. I think computers and PDA and texting are all impersonal. Plus with speed check on everything but here we miss all the mis spellings.
 

Trina

PF Addict
Jun 10, 2007
3,849
0
0
57
CT
Former teacher here. I taught printing in K and cursive in Gr. 3. My kids just finished Gr. 4 & Gr. 6. Sadly, neither can write well in cursive. Our district spends very little time teaching it because they don't feel it's necessary. I think this is very unfortunate. I have had to teach my kids how to write their signatures.

Sure, handwriting may not be as prevalent as it once was due to the computer age, but I still think it's an important life skill.
 

budnkota

PF Fanatic
Mar 28, 2008
683
0
0
45
Indiana
kids are at a serious disadvantage if they don't know this. I write things down for my kids at work, and then have to turn around and rewrite it for a 16 y-o who can't read cursive. To me, that is unacceptable. I was in school and we had to turn in something hand written, we were not allowed to print. I agree w/Kaytee as far as the computer age argument. Completely irrelevant. That'd be like saying well, we shouldn't teach them to print either, because they can just use the computer.

Printing takes longer - kids who can't do it are going to be at a disadvantage when it comes to anything there they need to write rapidly. I can think of several times in my journalism career where it was challenging enough to get everything thing down accurately b/c there is so much going on. i'd have been at a great disadvantage had I been trying to print (and keep in mind, recording devices aren't allowed everywhere)

Our society is also very cyclical. Computers are here to stay, but I predict that people will eventually return to doing things more by hand - especially personal things. Look at the way the tides have turned as far as food. More and more people are making a move to a more natural way of life in every way. People hold onto written letters that mean something to them. how many people do you see with printouts of email letters? Probably a few, but not as many. It just doesn't have the same meaning... not as personal.
 
May 28, 2008
27
0
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etceterae said:
I still think that for some part of English in grade school, cursive should still be taught. In the school where I go to, we're required to analyze copies of historical documents, in which the majority are written in cursive. A few of my Regulars friends can't read it at all, which the snobbier IH/AP kids think is "dumb" of them. Either way, cursive can still come in extremely helpful, especially if the child is interested in history.

I think this is the best argument for learning cursive. It makes a lot of sense and is very true that a lot of documents studies are written in cursive. Even if later, they are typed, for history's sake, it's good to understand the original format.
 

budnkota

PF Fanatic
Mar 28, 2008
683
0
0
45
Indiana
I agree that they should learn - but don't think that for reading historical docs is a great argument for it. Seriously - how many people do you know who do that? if that were the sole reason, it'd be much easier for them just to learn it on their own to pursue their interest.
 

Dysing Around

Junior Member
Sep 17, 2008
2
0
0
Texas
Our school district has stopped actively teaching cursive writing. It is introduced but not reinforced or practiced. Having said that though I have two dyslexic children and they are taught cursive in their dyslexic classes because of the reversal issues.

I think it is a shame. I have friends who have beautiful cursive writing and I think I would miss that if they typed me a note instead of writing it. There is something to be said for beautiful words written elegantly. Same can be said for an amazing public speaker.

But, our techie world is taking over. Heck, I don't even know how to text yet! :)