The Writing on the Wall
Does handwriting have a practical use today, or is it just a relic of a bygone era when children listened to their elders? Certainly, notes written by hand have the retro appeal of, say, a gift of homemade apple butter, but apart from the odd scribble of gratitude or condolence, do we really need it?
Many educators say yes, for reasons having nothing to do with thank-yor notes. Handwriting is important because research shows that when children are taught how to do it, they are also being taught how to learn and how to express themselves.
"Measures of speed among elementary-school students are good predictors of the quality and quantity of their writing in middle school," says Stephen Peverly, a professor of psychology and education at Columbia University's Teadchers College, "I don't care about ligibility."
This article appeared in the November 12, 2007 edition of the Newsweek.