I hear more and more about schools cutting handwriting from their programs. The thinking seems to be that handwriting is unnecessary with our current replacements in technology, like computers and iPads. It might be true that people type now more than they use pencil and paper but that is a poor excuse for not teaching proper handwriting. There will be many times in a person’s life when an old-fashioned pencil and paper will be required. The SAT, for example, still requires a handwritten section. Typing tends to eliminate the chances of misspellings and grammatical errors because of automatic spell check and grammar check. However, it isn’t always accurate and I believe that relying on the computer to review your work breeds laziness. Students still need to be taught spelling and the rules of grammar in the English language just like they need to be taught handwriting. Even if it is done minimally in day to day life, handwriting is still necessary,
Teaching proper handwriting techniques, and the proper formation of letters, also supports fine motor work. This fine motor work does not just aid in neat handwriting but also benefits a child’s muscular development. It is important to teach children proper pencil grip (instead of fisting a pencil, for example) and the proper spacing required in writing. Handwriting can be exhausting and feel tedious to children so instead of giving a child a piece of paper and having them write a letter 100 times on the page, you need to keep them engaged. It is important to incorporate fun and exciting ways to write! Most kids love getting messy and kids with special needs, especially, need lots of sensory experiences to learn more about the world and how it works. Sensory play aids in a child’s brain development so it is important to keep the tedious work, like handwriting, fun and interesting!
During our handwriting block of Language Arts we practice writing with various mediums to build up to more pencil and paper work. You might hear the saying that “young children learn with all of their senses.” We, as adults, should strive to help reach all of our children’s senses!