Wednesday, April 27, 2011
The Curve on Cursive
Help! Am I the only one who feels the country is on the slippery slide to Hell? Case in point, read this, as reported by ABC News:
"Forty-one states have so far adopted the new Common Core State Standards for English, which does not require cursive. Set by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governors Association (NGA), the standards provide a general framework for what students are expected to learn before college.
States are allowed the option of re-including cursive if they so choose, which is what Massachusetts and California have done.
But the latest to contemplate abandoning the script is Georgia, where teachers and administrators will meet in March to discuss erasing the longhand style from its lesson plans, says Georgia Department of Education spokesman Matt Cardoza.
The argument is that cursive is time-consuming and not as useful as the keyboard skills students will need as they move on to junior high and high school."
In the musical "Bye Bye Birdie" there is a song titled, "What's the Matter with Kids Today?". I guess it could be sung throughout the centuries for every generation. No cursive writing? Who will be able to sign their own name? Text. Texting. Sexting. All it takes is two thumbs and a lowered understanding of the English language. Spelling? Oooops, who needs that? Where U At? Dear God, what is happening in the world?
Do teachers not remember what cursive teaches us beyond just a writing style? Neatness, concentration, control over motor skills, and maybe even an appreciation for art, beauty, and vision? Since it opens the way to drawing, painting, and many other forms of hand-eye visual coordination, how can we cheat (cripple!) future generations by leaving out this important feature of their education? Maybe I am a little crazy about this, but I honestly remember drawing my first butterfly in the margins of my First Grade writing exercises.
I guess kids today will have to learn to draw with their thumbs on a tiny keyboard. Good luck.