Why Is Handwriting Becoming a Lost Art?


Quick Answer

The lost art of handwriting is often attributed to two main causes: K-12 school curriculum and the continued evolution of technology. The vast majority of schools nowadays have abandoned traditional handwriting requirements and, instead, focus on keyboard proficiency.

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With new technology ,such as computers, tablets and smartphones, becoming more integrated with society, the need for handwritten notes is more infrequent than ever. While some argue the handwritten word is an art form that cannot be recreated via digital text, others have embraced the change by using digital means of communication wherever possible.

Elementary schools are providing mixed messages on the subject, as of 2015. Studies have shown that the majority of schools now place a greater emphasis on typing skill versus legible writing as early as the second grade. Many schools have abandoned teaching cursive entirely.

While the need for handwriting has decreased dramatically, there are a number of harmful effects this change could have on young learners. According to psychologist Stanislas Dehaene, the motion of handwriting activates a unique neurological circuit in the brain, causing mental stimulation and improving understanding and memory of content. Transitioning notetaking from a paper pad to a computer keyboard could negatively impact the way students retain information in the classroom, at any age.

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