Writers Of The Lost Art

Writers Of The Lost Art

There are 2 comments on the Hartford Courant story from Apr 23, 2007, titled Writers Of The Lost Art. In it, Hartford Courant reports that:

April 23, 2007 By ROBERT A. FRAHM , Courant Staff Writer Eight-year-old Helena Bui and 10-year-old Abbey Lawlor have mastered a skill that educators say is fading among many of America's schoolchildren: doing ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Hartford Courant.

Kate Gladstone

Guilderland, NY

#1 May 15, 2007
As a handwriting specialist, I'd like to note the research showing that the fastest and most legible handwriters ignore about half of what makes cursive writing "cursive."

According to a 1998 paper in the Journal of Educational Research (citation below), the fastest handwriters (and especially the fastest LEGIBLE handwriters)…

/a/ join only some letters, not all of them — using only the easiest joins, skipping the rest —


/b/ tend to incorporate printed letter-shapes into their cursive. In other words, where printed and cursive letters seriously “disagree” in shape (capitals and many lower-case letters), the highest-speed highest-legibility handwriters tend to use the printed form and not bother with the cursive version.

The same research also shows that cursive writers don’t write any faster than print-writers of equal legibility: the betwixt-and-between print/cursive hybridizers beat out both the "printers" and the "cursivists," in legibility and even in speed.

Graham, S., Berninger, V., & Weintraub, N.(1998). The relationship between handwriting style and speed and quality. Journal of Educational Research, volume 91, issue number 5,(May/June 1998), pages 290-297.

About that much ballyhooed difference in SAT essay scores between cursive and non-cursive essays: when I checked with the Educational Testing Service (producers of the SAT), the research staff informed me that the difference amounts to a statistically insignificant fraction of a point.

Kate Gladstone
Director, World Handwriting Contest
owner, Handwriting Repair handwriting instruction/remediation service
Helena b

United States

#2 Feb 6, 2011
I'm Helena and I know it's been a while but that's really crushing. I mean excuse me but was that really necessary? you can't just put a kid down. if I saw this when I was 8 I wouldve been crushed. thanks

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