The Return of Penmanship in Public Schools

The Return of Penmanship in Public Schools
Photo by Wonderlane / Unsplash

In an era dominated by keyboards and screens

California has taken a bold step by reinstating cursive instruction in public school curricula. This move, part of a growing trend in several states, sparks debates on the relevance and significance of teaching cursive in today's digital world.

Ayan Patience's Perspective: Is Cursive Outdated?

A glimpse into the sentiments of 9-year-old Ayan Patience, attending a Catholic school in Maryland, reflects the skepticism surrounding the revival of cursive. He questions the necessity of learning an alternative writing style when conventional methods seem perfectly functional.

Tyara Brooks: Cursive as an Art Form

Tyara Brooks, a fourth-grade teacher at Longfellow Elementary Magnet School in Pasadena, sees cursive as more than just writing – it's an art form that allows students to personalize their handwriting, leaving a unique imprint of their identity. Her passion for cursive stems from a family tradition of beautiful penmanship.

Embracing the Loops and Strokes

Contrary to Ayan's skepticism, students like Emily Yepez express genuine enthusiasm for cursive. They find joy in mastering the loops and strokes, with some voluntarily choosing to complete homework in cursive. Ms. Brooks' classroom becomes a hub of excitement as students eagerly inquire about the prospect of learning cursive each school year.

California's Educational Shift: Reasons Behind the Decision

The recent California law mandating cursive instruction highlights practical reasons for its revival. Advocates argue that cursive offers students the ability to develop a distinct signature and read historical documents with ease. This section delves into the educational objectives behind the legislative move.

Balancing Tradition and Progress

Erica Ingber, the principal of Longfellow Elementary, reflects on the cyclical nature of educational trends. Drawing from personal experiences, she acknowledges the challenges of engaging with cursive when its importance is not perceived. However, she appreciates the evolving relationship between teachers and students, emphasizing the significance of conveying the practical aspects of cursive.

As cursive makes a comeback in California's public schools, the educational landscape grapples with finding a balance between traditional penmanship and the demands of a digital age. The perspectives of students, teachers, and administrators provide a multifaceted view of this educational shift, raising questions about the future of handwriting in an increasingly digital world.

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