THE IMPORTANCE OF HANDWRITING
There seems to be a major push towards teaching technology in our schools, to the detriment of handwriting tuition.
I think parents should be asked, if they are happy to have their young children taught keyboard skills, at the expense of specific lessons in correct pen grip, correct letter formation, and good handwriting?
Handwriting is a very important academic skill – part of our heritage. The loss of this skill is like the loss of a language.
The loss of handwriting skills seems to be a Western world problem. I think one would find that Eastern countries, have maintained comprehensive handwriting programmes.
Our young people are most likely going to compete with young people from many countries, when they enter the workforce. Wouldn’t we want them to have every possible advantage?
Everywhere I look today, I see our young people, when they ‘put pen to paper’ displaying an immature thumb wrapping or thumb tucking pen grip. This shows they have never been shown correct pen grip.
I think technology is absolutely wonderful (my goodness, how could I have access to the world of websites without it) however, it should not be at the expense of other practical skills, like handwriting.
A quote from Mahatma Ghandi:
“I saw that bad handwriting should be regarded as a sign of an imperfect education, I tried to improve mine, but it was too late. I could never repair the neglect of my youth. Let every young man and woman be warned by my example, and understand that good handwriting is a necessary part of education.”
Once a young child has established an incorrect pen grip it is usually quite difficult, if not impossible, to change. In fact, one would need to “tread very carefully” to change the pen grip of an unwilling child, if it is going to upset other aspects of their education. Probably best to make the most of the pen grip they have established, encourage them, and maybe when they are more mature, they will change their handwriting habits.
The basic Tripod Grip needs to be established very early in a new entrant’s schooling- Year 1 or, Year 2 at the latest.