Monday, December 16, 2013

An Elegant Hand

At my ward's Relief Society Christmas party we all wrote letters to the missionaries and as I looked over the table I realized that I very rarely see anyone's handwriting these days.  How often do you get a handwritten note?  Not often.  It's all type, type, type.  It struck me how closely a person's penmanship matches their personality.

And then I had a flashback to the day when I applied for a job and the woman doing the interview looked at my handwriting and said, "That's almost identical to mine." And she pulled out a piece of paper and started writing and she was not kidding.  We were writing twins.  Very spooky. I got the job and we ended up being eerily similar in many ways.

And then again, I just finished up reading Rebecca where the New Mrs. de Winter keeps talking about how sharp and decisive Rebecca's handwriting was.  She's haunted by it because she has such weak handwriting and how can Maxim ever love her and her inelegant hand?  How, indeed!  And it struck me that for however long people have been writing they have been commenting on it.  And someday in the near future that won't happen anymore.

Then today I read an article about how important it is to still teach cursive in school. A lot of places have taken it right out of their curriculum.  I'm not as broken up about it as you might imagine.  The article was a little preachy and the gist of it was that it boosts kids' self esteem to master script. Hogwash, I say.  If anything learning cursive gave me anxiety.  I could never get the letters to look how they were supposed to look when I always could in printing.  And if I based my self worth on how nice my T's looked then that would be a sad thing indeed. But naturally, it made me want to dust off the old cursive:

Isn't it strange how we all learned cursive and we still break through and write how we want.  I mean, I really applied myself to it.  I did all those worksheets as a kid and still my writing has evolved to look nothing like how I was taught. Oh, how I agonized over those Ts.  And also the lowercase r.  I could never get that second corner.

But it is a little sad that kids today are missing out on the joy of writing the cursive Z.  I still use it because it's just so satisfying.  When I wrote out Zarahemla (a place in the Book of Mormon) on the board in class the other day, the kids did not know what it was.

This is just a really long way of saying, "Handwriting.  Am I right?"


Erin said...

In Texas, they're not teaching handwriting at all. My grandmother would SPIN in her grave. And then she'd take a paddle to the rear ends of every board of education in the state.

sarahgurl said...

My kids have penmanship every day! Its like a badge of honor to get your ”cursive license” at their school! They aren't allowed to wrote in cursive until a teacher approves it. How's that?!

sarahgurl said...

Whoa sorry about all those exclamation marks ;-)

Rach said...

There was a big fuss in Utah last year because they had planned to remove cursive. They kept it in the curriculum. I am very glad, because I want my boys to have the ability to write a handwritten note to their mom from time to time. Jacob is learning right now and he loves it.

Angela said...

They do not teach cursive in New Zealand.


And a LOT of people have atrocious handwriting.