Dueling Columns: Cursive writing is out of the loop

Dueling columns

Dueling columns

Since the early 2000’s, cursive writing has been on a long steady decline into almost complete extinction. Many people have used “the status quo” and “the way things used to be” as reasons why it is important and that we should hold on to the archaic form of transcribing.

The one thing I would say to this is, “why?” Why would we hold on to cursive writing that really serves no purpose?

Many people around my age of 19 remember being taught cursive as a child in elementary school. I personally was taught cursive up until third grade. Now, I can sign my name and that is it.

I know very few people my age that still write in cursive and the people that do use it every day in their handwriting because they want to. So, really if the education system wanted cursive to stick with students into their adult life, it should have put more time and resources into the curriculum.

None of the cursive writing I was taught stuck with me in my adult life. Why? Because I don’t use it. I have no reason to ever use it. It isn’t faster, in fact my inadequate education of the subject rendered me slower at writing in cursive than in print.

No one even cared to explain to me the function of learning it. It was one of those things that you do “just because.” Our teachers just told us that we would need to sign our name when we were older.

Which by the way also turned out to be completely untrue. You don’t need to sign your name in cursive. There is no rule saying you have to sign your name in cursive when you write a check. There is no law. It is just a suggestion and a nonsensical one at that.

The only thing it is good for is satisfying our sense of tradition. It is the same reason we still use the “standard” form of measurements instead of metric like the rest of the world.

So, instead of taking hours out of the day to teach children something that will never benefit them we should instead be allocating that time to things that will help them, like reading, writing, and math.

Personally, my handwriting is terrible. So, maybe if we spent more time in class on print, instead of a system I’ve never needed, then I might have presentable handwriting that I, by the way, use every day of my life.

The biggest problem with cursive is that it is an optional form of writing the same language. You can get across the same things in print as you could in cursive. I’ll admit cursive looks prettier and fancier, but it’s not necessary.

I think it would be completely reasonable to make it an optional elective in high school or middle school seeing how it is an optional form of writing. That would make it so that anyone who wanted to learn it could, but forcing children to learn it is of no actual benefit to them or their future.

If anything, it is taking away from precious class time used to teach kids important structural knowledge that will stay with them the rest of their life.

Email [email protected]