Literacy and Liberty

Learning to Write in Cursive
Posted by: , September 20, 2018, 9:44 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I have very little memory of learning to read and write, but I recall very well teaching myself cursive.

When I was little, my father would always tell me that his mother, my grandmother, had the most beautiful cursive handwriting in the world. He described it in the sense that “she would not have been out of place if she were a signer of the U.S Constitution.” Having this information, I aspired to be like my grandmother. Cursive is sort of like another language. The symbols are generally the same, but your hands have to rememorize how to correctly write them. An “A” in print is not an “A” in cursive, for example. I recall sitting down for an hour or so a day and, in my copy book, I would write and rewrite certain words in cursive over and over and over again. Some words I would struggle with and others I would memorize pretty quickly. It was a cool experience for me because I had never worked hard on something at that age, so I felt a sense of accomplishment.┬áLater on, I was more confident in my ability. I began trying to write whole papers in cursive. This proved to be a challenge as some papers were clean, while others were riddled with mistakes. Nevertheless, I continued to try to perfect my cursive. I always kept in mind my grandmother’s handwriting.

At some point, I stopped using it. I’m not sure when I stopped specifically. I still know how to write in cursive, but it is not what It used to be. My older brother writes in cursive all the time, and has beautiful penmanship. I’m jealous of him in a way. Everyday I write, I see the remnants of my childhood work as my writing today is a half-print half-cursive mixture. My generation is the last one that learned to write in cursive, which saddens me. With the advancement of technology, cursive, in my opinion, has become an obsolete subject in American schools. That being said, I will forever cherish the work I did as a child in the field of cursive writing.

2 Comments so far
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I love writing in cursive and I think that it is a very neat skill to have. It is very interesting that you were able to teach yourself how to write in that way. It is not too dissimilar to print, but I definitely would not have been as inspired as you to teach myself how to do it.

   Meredith 09.23.18 @ 11:14 am

Evan and Meredith, I agree with you both! There’s a lot to be said for cursive, “obsolete” though it may be… Evan, I’d be curious to know if you ever saw your grandmother’s handwriting, and whether you modeled your own cursive specifically on hers.

   Professor Seiler 09.25.18 @ 7:57 pm

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