Wednesday, 14 November 2012

State Board of Education to Debate about the need of learning Cursive Writing in Schools

With the advancement of technology and different softwares available, we are becoming more and more dependent on texting, messaging or email for communicating with the world. We hardly write to convey our viewpoints. With the diffusion of mobile phones at a very early age, the dependency on electronic gadget increases.

Nowadays most of the phones are of smart phones variations with high end softwares which enable one to type out the information, photocopy or scan documents without making the effort to write those in normal paper. As a result the habit of writing notes is increasingly getting lost in the midst of all these gadgets and children hardly write anything to communicate.

Cursive writing

In the recent times, many parents have noticed that Cursive writing is not a part of their children’s curriculum any more. With the inroad of computer and internet at school level, most teens are opting for email and instant messaging to normal written letters.

Cursive writing is no longer a requirement as per The Common Core Standards for English, adopted by the State Board of Education in 2010. But prior to that as well there were no instructions regarding cursive writing being taught in Kansas classrooms.

It’s a motor skill like any number of other motor skills,” said Kathy Toelkes, spokeswoman for the Kansas Department of Education. “Curriculum has always been a local board decision,” she said. “We set standards and guidelines for what students should know and be able to do … but cursive handwriting and handwriting in general has not been a part of that.”

The lack of cursive writing was also noticed in Indiana, when the State Department of Education sent a memo to principals noting that the Common Core Standards “do not include cursive writing at all.” “Instead, students are expected to become proficient with keyboarding skills,” the memo said.
Chappell (Kansas board member), is not sure whether inspite of this memo, cursive writing will be made a part of the education system.

My opinion is, we need all of the above: We need to be able to work with technology, but we have to make sure kids can still write and communicate. Why give up on it?”

But if we concentrate on the prevailing situation, we will notice that the importances of handwritten documents have diminished. Most of the documents, projects, reports, essay writing submitted in schools are typed out copies or scanned version of typed documents. Students hardly submit hand written articles. As a result their chance of using and practicing cursive writing has been reduced to a great extent. If the State Boards initiative to implement Cursive Writing in regular syllabus is incorporated, then there still is a hope for the revival of the oldest art of writing.