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Should cursive be taught to children in public schools?

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Published on Mon, Nov 1, 2010 by BY PAM STEVENS | MANAGING EDITOR

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While surfing the channels on television last week, I came upon a story on King 5 News regarding cursive writing and the fact that it was slowly becoming extinct.

They asked the question: Does teaching kids how to write in cursive take time away from other, more important lessons?

The other question was whether or not children will be able to read letters or writings from the past where everyone wrote in very distinct cursive, i.e. our grandparents and their grandparents?

I’m not sure if teaching the basics of cursive writing should be completely left out of schools—I mean what does it hurt to teach students a different style of writing?

I know if I write in cursive, I seem to be able to write a little quicker but it is also a little more legible—just ask my co-workers.
On the other hand, it seems that in the not-so-distant future, most kids will be holding their computers in their hands and will be typing most assignments on them. My fifth grader already has a weekly homework assignment in which she has to go online and type her book report.

So, is teaching cursive really necessary at this point in the world of technology?
I remember spending weeks, if not months, learning cursive in third grade, (albeit that was a few decades ago,) and I still have trouble reading some of the older writings of my ancestors.

I’m sure that if this trend continues, cursive writing will become a class for learning a second language or maybe a class through an archeology department.

What bothers me more than the lack of kids writing in cursive is the lack of correct grammar and spelling.
When my teenager texts me, ‘r u coming 2 pick me up?’ it’s like fingernails on a chalkboard to me.

I do know that he is a great speller so I don’t really worry too much about that, but there are a lot of kids out there who struggle with spelling and learning to write in “text talk” can’t be helping them. The lack of periods and question marks drives me crazy too.

I will have to admit though, that I am sometimes guilty of this practice, but in all fairness, it’s because I don’t have the greatest keyboard on my phone. (Excuses—I know!)

It’s interesting how many people can’t spell and it is becoming even more evident in the world of Facebook and Twitter. Granted, sometimes those are typos, but a lot of the time it’s just plain, bad spelling.

So, if we’re going to forego teaching kids to write in cursive, maybe we should spend that time working on spelling and grammar. That way, we will all be able to read and understand what others are saying.

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