We all had a teacher, whether it was in primary school, middle school, or even high school, who would ramble on about the importance of cursive writing. The question on most people’s minds is if learning cursive is actually as beneficial as their teacher believed it to be. The truth is, the teacher is correct, cursive is a very beneficial skill to learn in school.
Cursive handwriting improves one's retention of information. The physical act of writing out your notes by hand instead of typing on a keyboard forces children to process the content they are learning, and reframe it in their minds. This leads to an overall better understanding and retention of the information they are learning. Cursive writing also allows for a faster handwriting speed for the series of continuous strokes, unlike printing, which is a series of start and stop strokes. A faster speed when writing is proven to increase attention when writing, as well as fluidity.
Another major benefit to cursive handwriting is that those who learn cursive often have better spelling and grammar skills. Children who learn cursive are found to have a better understanding of forming sentences. Furthermore, the muscle memory of cursive aids spelling as the hand acquires memory of spelling patterns through fluid movements that are used repeatedly when writing. Through this continuous repetition children also learn letter, word, and sentence structure. A study at the Université de Sherbrooke showed that people who learn cursive writing at a younger age will be better at writing and spelling than those who do not.
Learning cursive handwriting has also proven to ease symptoms of dyslexia. Those who suffer from dyslexia will mix up their letters, letter sounds, and word combinations when reading and writing. Studies have found that children who suffer from dyslexia often respond better when writing in cursive than printing or typing. This is because learning cursive teaches children hand-eye coordination and memory skills. By not having to lift their pen off the paper, children find it easier to remember the continuously connected letters of cursive compared to the singular and disconnected letters of printing. As well, many printed letters look similar and are easily reversed, making it a lot easier for those who suffer from dyslexia to become confused when reading or writing it. This is not the case with cursive as it was found that those who suffer from dyslexia find it harder to reverse and confuse cursive letters.
Overall, learning cursive writing is beneficial for motor skills, cognitive development, and writing. Even if cursive is not in your skillset, do not worry, as it is something that can be learned at any age and will still be beneficial for a person in the long run!
Brain Balance Achievement Centers. “Brain Benefits of Learning to Write in Cursive.” Brain Balance. 2022. https://www.brainbalancecenters.com/blog/brain-benefits-write-in-cursive Accessed 17 January 2022.
Hatfield, Iris.“Top 10 Reasons to Learn Cursive.”Memoria Press .6 January 2018. https://www.memoriapress.com/articles/top-10-reasons-to-learn-cursive/ Accessed 17 January 2022.
My Cursive.“5 Powerful Benefits of Cursive Writing (Reasons to Teach it!)” My Cursive. 2020. https://mycursive.com/benefits-of-cursive-writing/ Accessed 17 January 2022.
StartWriteIndia. “Cursive Writing Benefits to Help Dyslexic Children.”Medium. 25 July 2018. https://medium.com/@startwriteindia/cursive-writing-benefits-to-help-dyslexic-children-d3567c18454 Accessed 17 January 2022.