Teach cursive? YES.
However, the one piece of information missing from this bill and supporting materials (including commentary from other supporters) is whether cursive is presently being taught in NV schools, or not; whether there is a proposal or “movement” not to teach it or never to teach it. In other words, is this bill even necessary? I don’t have kids in early elementary school, so I just don’t know. Older kids that I know do know cursive. Citing the need to sign documents by hand is a very poor argument for cursive; people’s all-caps script is just as unique as their cursive.
I would hate to see this bill (1) not being necessary, because cursive is taught at the present time and therefore (2) being voted down because of that fact, and then (3) the enemies of good education such as our very own education establishment using that vote as the proof or excuse that cursive should be banned because it was already voted down by the legislature…
I would also look very carefully at the research. As to engaging your brain as you write, over time as my profession as technical writer “progressed” from my pen-on-paper scribbles being typed up by my secretary to typing the text myself and composing the printed page — text and graphics — on the computer myself, I can tell you that your brain is even more engaged as you have to pay attention not only to what you write but also how it gets laid out on the page, what it will look like to the reader. Of course everyone is not a writer of any sort, but most people cannot finish even a simple letter without any mistakes, not in this computer age or before the computer age.
The one very important habit or skill that I see coming from writing by hand is the philosophical imperative to THINK before you ACT, which is an imperative under all circumstances not limited to writing by hand, but is most immediately applicable to writing by hand because there is no editing after you committed ink to paper — no editing; not without admitting you made a mistake and confessing to having made the mistake by crossing it out, yet remaining on the paper forever.
It is critical that children need to know how to write in cursive. How will they be able to sign their name on any important document, for their driver’s license or marriage license? How will they be able to read a Birthday card from their Grandmother?
“Handwriting engages the brain in important ways that selecting letters on a keyboard does not. Research continues to show that the hand-brain relationship is important for children and adults. The sequential strokes required to form letters and words activates regions of the brain involved in “thinking, language, and working memory.” “It seems there is something really important about manually manipulating and drawing out two-dimensional things we see all the time,” according to an Indiana University psychology and neuroscience researcher. Researchers used MRIs to see that “practice helps with learning letters and shapes, can improve idea composition and expression, and may aid fine motor-skill development.” (Wall Street Journal, 10-5-10)
“Today, most use keyboarding. Yet the skills of handwriting remain important. They are memory, focus, prediction, attention, sequencing, estimation, patience and creativity.” (National Science & Math Initative.org, 10-25-13) http://eagleforum.org/publications/educate/nov13/cursive-handwritings-benefits.html
I have to confess I don’t understand most of that educrat bureaucratese stuff on edupedia.org. And I have a teaching degree as well as a Ph.D. in physics. Also I do wish they had provided links to actual clinical studies and MRI scans to prove the benefits of cursive writing on brain function and the intellect.
Lacking that, we have to rely on the self evident truth that writing involves both fine motor skills to put something legible on paper, as well as serious prior thinking to decide and compose what to write. Typing on a computer keyboard involves different fine motor skills, and also relieves most of the pressure for clear prior thinking because we have auto-correct to fix our spelling, and editing on the computer does not leave a mess on the paper no matter how many times you go back to change something. As one who’s gone though the transition from (1) writing things out on paper and having a secretary to type it up, to (2) typing text as well as creating the artwork and page composition on a computer all by myself, I can offer you anecdotal evidence that even the purely intellectual requirements are different because the pressure to get it right on the first try is so huge when you write by hand.
What I do understand is that all of the most important historical documents, diaries, journals and letters were written by hand in cursive, before and even after the invention of the printing press and the typewriter. I also know that people such as Lenin had clearly boasted that before you venture to create the new Soviet Man, you have to cut the people off from their past, heritage and culture. No longer teaching cursive achieves precisely that goal in just one generation, especially when paired with the new SAT and AP US History curriculum from David Coleman’s College Board. What this deadly combination will achieve is that we won’t even have any historical researchers in the future. The APUSH takes away any incentive to study elitist dead white male slave-owning hypocrites, and their documents written in cursive will be undecipherable and incomprehensible to the few who’d brave the stigma of being un-PC. Americans are achieving what the Soviet Russians, Nazi Germans and Maoist Chinese were not brutal enough to achieve.
I support SB86 which requires the teaching of cursive handwriting in the government schools in elementary grades. The instruction must be designed to ensure that a pupil is able to create readable documents through legible cursive handwriting by the completion of the third grade. Common Core “Curriculum” has eliminated cursive handwriting. “Many states are returning to a requirement that children learn to write. Arkansas, California, Georgia, Kansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee include cursive in their curriculum for the 2015-16 school year. A Washington state legislator is trying to bring back cursive. One district in Ohio snuck cursive writing in under the guise of art curriculum.”
“Handwriting engages the brain in important ways that selecting letters on a keyboard does not. Research continues to show that the hand-brain relationship is important for children and adults. The sequential strokes required to form letters and words activates regions of the brain involved in “thinking, language, and working memory.” “It seems there is something really important about manually manipulating and drawing out two-dimensional things we see all the time,” according to an Indiana University psychology and neuroscience researcher. Researchers used MRIs to see that “practice helps with learning letters and shapes, can improve idea composition and expression, and may aid fine motor-skill.
(Wall Street Journal, 10-5-10).
I also oppose Common Core as it is not an educational system worthy of our youth. The curriculum is anti-American, anti-Constitution, and inferior when it comes to teaching math and science. I look to a time when Common Core is no more.