Is the writing on the wall for cursive script? The advent of digital technology has raised searching questions in the academic world about the teaching of handwriting. With society in general and young people in particular increasingly using mobile phones and computers to communicate the keyboard is rapidly replacing pen and paper as the basic tools of communication. While no one is proposing abandoning the teaching of handwriting altogether, some question the value of kids learning cursive writing, a skill that can take a long time to acquire.
We will not burden pupils by teaching two ways of writing. As soon as they have learned the print letters they can start writing longer texts. When it comes to typing on the computer, we will have more time to teach the writing process and polish the content
In this edition of Learning World we have three stories that explore this theme in depth.
Finland: moving away from cursive
We visit a primary school in Helsinki where authorities have decided cursive writing will no longer be a compulsory subject next year. The idea has general support from teachers, parents and pupils but how will it change the kids learn writing and communication?
Consigned to history?
In this story we examine the pros and cons of cursive writing and the future for handwriting in general. We hear from two academics with opposing views; one who firmly believes cursive adds value to a childs’ education and another who questions its merits and calls of keyboard skills to be taught instead.
Japan: lifeline for Kanji characters
Our final story looks at a country where writing skills have been affected by the keyboard and touchscreen use more than most. However, digital technology could help save the dying art of Kanji writing.
Watch the video to see the programme in full.