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Author Topic: cursive writing and texting - is writing changing forever?  (Read 3604 times)
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« on: October 13, 2011, 03:19:16 PM »

Throughout many schools in New Jersey, Cursive writing is NOT TAUGHT any more. Typing skills are taught very young and texting abbreviations are chopping words and even entire sentences into 3 or 4 letter short-cuts. Are we losing the ability to communicate using English (and I'm sure every language) by the use of technological devices?

The Cursive part, I have a friend who's 13 year old son had no idea how to read a letter in cursive, it literally could have been Latin to him - he just looked at it and tried to pull the letters apart and see what the mystery message might have been - ugh.

Texting has destroyed the ability for many kids to actually spell the correct words if needed. Some may argue "That is what spell checks are for" I don't buy that.

Do you think we are losing basic skills, evolving through technology, neither or both??
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« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2011, 03:44:11 PM »

i thnk its th futr

 grin
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« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2011, 03:51:38 PM »

I'm not sure...although there's a lot for kids now to learn that we didn't have to learn.

My kids don't learn cursive so much (a little) but spend way more time in keyboarding.  They don't learn roman numerals, but do have to do a lot more internet information searching.

I think some basic skills are being lost, but then again, we didn't have such a vast ocean of information available at our fingertips, either.

My kids don't know how to read roman numerals.  Not a big loss, but we did have a conversation the other night at dinner time, and they were lost as to what 50 or 100 was in roman.  In all fairness, I couldn't remember either.  But they can google it.  I couldn't back then.
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« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2011, 05:00:21 PM »

I just taught my 17 year old grandson how to sign his name. I think it's a crying shame. He still can't tell time if the clock has hands.
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« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2011, 06:01:34 PM »

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« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2011, 06:24:30 PM »

will they be able to sign a legal document or maybe they will have no choice in that either?Huh?
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« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2011, 07:16:27 PM »

I am 37 years old and the only two words I ever write in cursive is my signature. I was taught cursive nearly 30 years ago, but always preferred to print.
Spelling and correct usage, however, is one of my pet peeves. My wife is a teacher, so occasionally I end up in one classroom or another at her school. Last week I was helping her move some things and walked into another classroom to get something. Written on the dry erase board ..."Their is a reason why your here"...I corrected both mistakes.
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« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2011, 07:20:08 PM »

We don't use it any more.   Cursive is going the way of shaped notes.  Something for historians.   
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« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2011, 08:20:09 PM »

I use it.
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« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2011, 08:43:40 PM »

Good post John. I have spent so much time on a pc that I can no longer read my own handwriting when it gets cold much less anyone else. I once had a nice writing and I am a drafter by trade and I COULD letter very neatly. Now I just scratch. Lets talk about spelling. I am now addicted to spell check. Can't do squat without it.


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« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2011, 09:36:24 PM »

About cursive, I wonder too if it is still necessary, I rarely use it when writing notes at work which is where I write most of the time. I do agree that I wish I had better typing skills, something elective back in my high school days - but still in the 70's that was there with home-EC in a teen boys mind.

A few years ago while on webcam with Buzzbeejr (14 at the time), I asked him to look something up and he was going a mile a minute at the keyboard while his head was facing away. SADLY, I can type fast, but I'm lost if I don't look at the keyboard. So keyboard skills are a must today.

My wife mentions the Dewey Decimal System is ancient to kids, they may pass it in the library at the end of each row of material and have no clue what it is. Also she questions the need for the "New Math" and why it is necessary, especially when parents can't understand or assist their kids without learning it themselves. I imagine we are in a time of change, much for the better, some we won't know until it is gone.

I wonder... what other changes will occur with technology driving civilization? In a recent post I questioned going back to our youth and starting over with a clean memory, many said they would not go back without their life learned experiences, I guess it would be a groundhog day of sorts. But equally, I wonder, what it is like going ahead.

The exact quote I won't pretend to make (sure someone knows it) but "Technology so advanced that it is incomprehensible to us will appear as magic." I believe that is true, and off subject wonder if all today's technology (or at least some of it) is Reverse Engineered from other worlds - I never turn down a good UFO twist, but look at all that has happened since Roswell.
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« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2011, 10:24:15 PM »

Technology, heck. I still give hand signals when turning. Ain't mastered that ding-ding thing yet.
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« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2011, 10:38:14 PM »

Arthur C. Clarke once said "Any technology sufficiently more advanced...will appear to be magic".

Had to find it... I was pretty close Smiley

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« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2011, 12:57:47 AM »

Basically you are not ALLOWED to write cursive in real life.  You're not allowed to use it on any document or form.  Mine is so bad no one can read it anyway.  I have not done cursive writing since 4th grade when they stopped grading me on it.  All my school work was typed or it was printed.  They could have saved me a lot of frustration if they hadn't tried to make a uncoordinated young boy try to do something beyond his capabilities.  But if we don't learn to READ it... now that would make thousands of old documents beyond our grasp...

I notice kids today can't read roman numerals either... some can't read an analog clock...
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« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2011, 02:38:09 AM »

In my opinion, teaching kids how to write cursive today would be as useful as teaching them how to design circuits with vacuum tubes.  A complete waste of time.  There are way more important things for kids to be learning IMO.

And who gives a crap about roman numerals?Huh?  They should be learning binary and hex math at an early age.

If you need to sign anything, just give them a thumbprint.
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« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2011, 06:00:58 AM »

>And who gives a crap about roman numerals?

There are an awful lot of documents and books and copyright notices that require that skill, including virtually every outline written, chapter numbers in books, page numbers for the front matter of books, etc etc etc. 

>They should be learning binary and hex math at an early age.

They taught me binary, base four and octal in fourth grade... and that was 1964... and yes they should learn it.
There are 10 kinds of people in the world.  Those who understand binary and those who do not...
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« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2011, 08:30:05 AM »

Good post John. It must be a difference in school district/state mandates or guidelines because both of my sons have/are learning cursive writing. My oldest is in the 4th grade and all of his work is done in cursive writing. Roman numerals however is a different thing. So, far I have seen anything related to them learning it like I had to-maybe later.

But as far as technology is concerned, my 10 year old is leaps and bounds ahead of me and I dont really consider myself to be computer illiterate. He can do things with a laptop, Ipod, Xbox, etc that just boggles me. Recently, he got himself temporarily banned from Xbox live due to him hooking his laptop up to the Xbox and modding the code in some games he plays. After a come to Jesus meeting with him, he doesnt do that anymore, but secretly I was impressed with what he had done.
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« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2011, 08:41:16 AM »

What we're losing isn't just an archaic form or alphabet or roman numerals.

We're losing the ability to actually read paper from the past that may have bearing on what we are or are doing today.

Do we NEED it to survive in todays world?  No.  Do we need the ability so people are educated and can make wise decisions? 

Who cares, American Idol is on.
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« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2011, 09:19:13 AM »

Cursive is a faster method of recording information by hand than is printing.  In the event of no digital/tape recorder, video camera, or whatever...someone using cursive writing will get information on paper while those printing will lag behind.  Note taking in school, for example.  Good cursive writing does require practice. 

Personally, I have printed for years though I was taught cursive writing in school.  I never did have really good penmanship (I probably didn't practice enough!), but it was readable.  The older my hands get, though, the more I start writing like my father did. Smiley

A thought on "texting"...  The original "texters" were CW (morse code) operators. Wink

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« Reply #19 on: October 14, 2011, 09:49:11 AM »

the did some study on search engines making us stupider ( Wink for the language wonks)  i'll see if i can find it.  guess the upshot was that we don't even need to think a question all the way through, we only need to think in key words.  then, we never need to research anything because the computer just spits out the answer.

hey...if you can't read cursive, you can't read founding documents.  never mind the language already being difficult, the writing will make it like Latin to them.

it is probably true that when you are adding so many new thing to study you do have to let some old things go.  i do wonder about some of the new things they are adding.  i took Latin and Greek in HS, but no sensitivity studies.  i don't think that hurt me one bit!!   evil
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