Practicing the curlicues of P’s and Q’s will no longer be a (w)rite of passage for many kids: Cursive is not part of the Common Core State Standards, the recently established academic guidelines now adopted by 45 of the 50 states. As a result, many public schools have ceased script instruction and are using the time to build technology skills. While some educators consider the art of handwriting ancient, it does have its advocates. Recent research from Indiana University found that writing by hand activates areas of the brain that don’t get tapped during typing. Another study, conducted by the University of Washington, revealed that when elementary-school students composed essays on paper rather than on-screen, they wrote more and faster. Maybe it’s wise not to write off the mighty pen just yet.
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