Kansas may halt cursive education

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UK'er here. Must say, it's weird seeing so many people from the UK say (to paraphrase): 'lols, everyone uses cursive over here. It's called NORMAL hand-writing. How inferior are you yanks?!'.

It's like I'm living in an entirely different country. I have never used 'cursive'. At work I'd say the vast majority of my older work colleagues do use cursive, but amongst my generation (late teens to late 20s) it's about a 50/50 split.

It was taught to us at primary school, but whether or not we actually adopted it was entirely optional. At no point in my life has the fact that I never write in 'cursive' (or joined-up, as we call it) been an issue.

Cursive? What is this, 1776? It's a good thing that Kansas is considering halting teaching cursive, because it's illegible and pointless. To the people who think it's art, you're wrong. Art is art. Cursive is an outdated tradition.

I don't see this is a bad thing, personally. Cursive education is pretty much a waste of time in my opinion, since I don't use it at all, even for my signature. Print is simpler to write, more easily legible, and if you only teach print you only have to teach kids how to write once.

blah_ducks:
B-But if they get rid of cursive no one in Kansas can take the SAT!

Seriously it was kind of awful/ hilarious seeing a room full of juniors (myself included) struggle to remember our cursive to write the "I will not cheat yadda yadda" before we started the test. Of course they couldn't possibly change that to have the option of writing in print. You can lie if you write in print, it has to be cursive.

Yes I'm still bitter.

Same thing happened for me on the PSAT a few weeks ago. The whole school's worth of sophomores (only around 100 for me, but still) was struggling on that. It took at least 10 minutes for everyone to crap out something that sort of looked like cursive.

Seriously though, how does writing in cursive make it any more of a binding signature? If anything, it should be less useful since there's no handwriting match.

And nothing of value was lost that day.

While I see no reason to use cursive on a daily basis over print--for most people, print is faster and generally more legible, plus it conforms more to computer fonts which are ubiquitous nowadays--the fact is that people still use cursive for handwritten correspondencces. Notes in the margin of a paper/report/etc, handwritten letters, signed cards, etc. It seems silly to completely drop it from education since it is still used and people should be able to read in it.

Cavan:

You know what we call cursive writing in England? Writing(yes I know this is quite a douchey thing to say). I genuinely did not know the word 'cursive' until I spoke to Americans many years later. I cannot comment on how younger people who are in the early stages of school now are being taught, but I have a friend who is 17 and for everybody he is around it is considered a basic form of writing that is the norm. So unless the schooling system has so radically changed within the past 5 years as to be unrecognizable to me..

I can confirm that it is the same in Germany. Honestly, probably everywhere in the first world.

Cursive is not a "thing", it's writing. Period.

Treblaine:

NightmareWarden:
I was taught cursive (joined up writing) in elementary school and I can think of one good reason, besides signatures, for why cursive should be taught in schools: so that children will know how to read other people's cursive writing.

The problem here is the utter lack of consistency with cursive writing. It's not REMOTELY standardised and encourages extremely sloppy lettering and varies by region to region and from country to country. You cannot definitely say what any one letter is, it all depends on context with where the letter is in the word and what letter it connects to.

Doctors writing prescriptions get into HUGE TROUBLE with this, as the one who went to Eaton has completely different handwriting than the one who went to Harrow.

And the worst part is: English with Roman characters was NOT EVEN DESIGNED FOR JOINED UP WRITING!!!

It was designed to be printed or chisseled with separate and distinct characters that were all uniformly the same.

image

The inscriptions on public buildings, they aren't written in cursive, they are written in block capitals. Consider this:

Idiort: "Huuurrr! Stop shouting! Enough with the CapsLocks, deeeeeerppp heeeeeerp!"

Even people who are trained in cursive writing have to guess and use deduction with other people's handwriting, they have to consider the surrounding context and eliminate possibilities, it's a practice that must go. Cursive handwriting started off as personal shorthand used by clerks trying to write quickly they only had to be understood by themselves and other people close to them.

You know what cursive writing REALLY is? The 17th century equivalent of txt-speak.

In 100 years will students be taught how to read text-gibberish like "M gon 2 c my m8 4m skol"?

gotta agree with this, i only know of one person off the top of my head who uses cursive normally, and that's because she is REALLY good at doing the big bubbly writing so it is legible. (it fucking takes up so much damn space too, so her essays look way longer than they are, fucker.)

besides that though, anytime i try to read cursive it's like deciphering a different style, especially with vowels and the way some letters connect, it can be a pain in the ass if they put them too close/not close enough together.

plus being in construction/engineering myself, we ALWAYS use all block capitals, it just makes shit way easier to read when you're looking at huge pages of info.

senordesol:

Yeah, yeah make whatever Kansas education jokes you want, but... is this really a bad thing? I can't think of any time in my day-to-day life where I have to use cursive apart from signatures. I kind of feel that cursive is a relic of a bygone era that we can well afford to lose (or at least have it taught later like in a university).

This, 100% this.

I haven't used cursive once since I learned it (save for my signature on semi-important documents and whatnot), and have since forgotten pretty much everything about it (again, except for my signature).

Actually, there was a part of the SAT that required you to write a paragraph in cursive, but it wasn't worth much and, for the most part, could have been completely ignored by anybody and they could still get a very high SAT score.

Also worth noting is the fact that a good chunk of modern communication is done via digital mediums and with keyboards.

So yeah, not a big deal in my opinion.

Monsterfurby:

I can confirm that it is the same in Germany. Honestly, probably everywhere in the first world.

Cursive is not a "thing", it's writing. Period.

I'm from germany and call you out on your confirmation. I did not write cursive ever again since I was taught it. Like about everyone I know.

And really? You never heard of Kursive Schrift / Schreibschrift? Because there is a difference in handwriting and Schreibschrift / cursive.

While I still think that learning cursive shouldn't be eliminated outright (my cursive is FAR more legible than my print for example) it can be certainly dialed back. Most of my early elementary Language Arts classes spent far more time teaching cursive than basic spelling as an example.

TheKasp:

Monsterfurby:

I can confirm that it is the same in Germany. Honestly, probably everywhere in the first world.

Cursive is not a "thing", it's writing. Period.

I'm from germany and call you out on your confirmation. I did not write cursive ever again since I was taught it. Like about everyone I know.

And really? You never heard of Kursive Schrift / Schreibschrift? Because there is a difference in handwriting and Schreibschrift / cursive.

My handwriting is more or less a combination of both, with my signature being apparently based on a way of writing the 'S' that I learned in elementary school in Lower Saxony, but that apparently isn't taught anymore elsewhere (and maybe not even at the school I went to in the early 90s...). But seriously, most people I know around here write half-Druckschrift half-Schreibschrift in varying degrees.

In any case, it is without a doubt important that children are taught basic cursive writing (as is done with the simplified Ausgangsschrift in Germany these days), simply to teach them proper writing flow, proportioning of letters and so forth. It's not about writing characters exactly like that for the rest of your life, but about the transferable skills you acquire while practicing.

You really can't claim that cursive doesn't stick.

When I was 8 years old or so I was taught how to do "joined-up-writing" at school along with the rest of my class. This was back when they got us to use our index finger to gauge how large a gap to put between words. If your handwriting wasn't deemed good enough then you had to use a pencil until it was neat enough, then you could use a pen.

The kids who couldn't get the hang of cursive writing spent ages writing words as neatly as they could (often resulting in horribly messy work) just so that they could use a pen, when really it would have been simpler and possibly more legible to let them write as they wished.

I'm finishing up my final year at school and I never write using cursive. I don't type very much, but when I do I have no problem with it. My neatest and quickest writing is definitely in the separate letter formation, I see no use for cursive at all.

It's not like we're in the olden days when people wrote with a quill and ink and every handwritten letter looked like it was written by a professional caligrapher..

Middle school through college I wrote in nothing but cursive. All the notes I took in every class I've ever had are in cursive. Since I only had to lift my pen for separate words, I was able to save as much time was needed to keep up with what the teachers were saying. And it's fun! I can still remember the feeling of triumph I had after third grade when, after learning cursive, I realized I could read suddenly previously indecipherable books and notes without having to think about it. Seeing how all those squiggles come together to form whole thoughts and ideas....

I get the feeling that people who don't like cursive aren't very good at it.

The only time I have used cursive writing is when I was speedily noting down what the lecturer was saying. I had to type it up or just write it out again printed while the lesson was still fresh and I could read or decipher what the hell I had written. Looking at the notes a couple of days later they were illegible to me. Then again this is panicked rushed out cursive to get as much information down as quickly as possible. I don't see a problem with dropping cursive as long as long as people still know how to write legibly.

I never realized how many people my age couldn't write in script/cursive when I took the SAT in 2010. It has that integrity statement that you need to copy entirely in script and most people in my room had trouble with it.

I only write in script. I find writing in print really slow.

skylog:

I get the feeling that people who don't like cursive aren't very good at it.

In my case that's definitely true. I can't just sit and write naturally with cursive. When it's all loopy letters (and the loops actually lead into one another) it's fine. As soon as I have to write H's and R's and things everything gets messed up. As a result I nearly always sign my name as Katie instead of Katherine.

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