Cursive Handwriting

Discussion in 'Cultural Discussions' started by -Epic-, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. -Epic- Member

    country:israel , language:hebrew,english
    Do people (mainly in England and the US) still write in cursive form? what about the kids? Is it really faster to write cursive (it looks longer, specially the upper case ones)?

    I would also like to learn cursive, and I found a web site that teaches. Can you please just have a look on the letters so I wouldn't learn mistakes? :)

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2009
  2. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima (English Only)

    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    In many places, including the UK, cursive writing is not taught anymore. In the UK, there is what is called joined-up writing, and children might be encouraged to join up the letter <e> for example, but not others, and certainly would not be encouraged to use fancy-looking capitals.

    If you use the style of writing given in the links, it might cause others to suppose that you are an elderly person when looking at your handwriting.
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2009
  3. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    Yes, Epic's cursive style looks rather old-fashioned to me. We were taught 'Marion Richardson' cursive style, which
    - in lower case is similar to Epic's lower case examples, but perhaps a bit more like printing in a few letters; and
    - in upper case is just like printing.
  4. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    I agree - the lower case link is close to what I was taught as a child in the UK as "joined up" writing, and it had quite a few loops - some of which were often omitted. The "higher quality" example then was called "Copperplate" which was full of beautiful loops and was taught well before my time :) - for example during Charles Dickens's time.
    The uppercase link has lots of examples of capitals that I only saw for the first time when I moved to the US - so I think of them as "American Cursive". I wonder if others have the same perspective.

    I spent a lot of time studying and practising calligraphy in the UK and saw many different alphabets, but could not initially fathom an uppercase G on US signage and handwriting :(
  5. Forero Senior Member

    Houston, Texas, USA
    USA English
    I still write this way, with rather different proportions, because, since I have used it for so many years, it is faster for me. I believe it has been shown that it is not faster to use than something more like block lettering, given equal time to practice.

    However, I have never used the "recommended" form of capital Q because it looks to me like a cursive 2. My Q is more like the "recommended" capital O flipped top for bottom.

    I have heard that the original "Copperplate" was actually designed for writing on copper, whereas block capital letters were designed for carving in stone and "block" lowercase letters were designed for manuscripts on parchment.

    My grandmother's (cursive) handwriting was beautiful, but I could never duplicate it. She said it was faster for her than block printing.

    My son's handwriting is not at all like what I learned as cursive. It is basically block lettering with a few uniquenesses, perhaps unique to him alone. He uses the keyboard mostly now, but he can still print faster than I can write in cursive.
  6. kalamazoo Senior Member

    US, English
    I learned the handwriting forms shown in the examples as a child (except the capital "A" doesn't look right to me) but a lot of the capital letter forms are not used much any more, like the G and the Q and the F and the N and the S, and for both upper and lower case, most people would not write that ornately any more with all the flourishes and curlicues.
  7. ewhite

    ewhite Senior Member

    The cursive samples we were not supposed to look at match exactly the letter forms I was taught--but that was many, many years ago. "Penmanship", as we called what is now known as cursive, was a separate subject in school, and I remember in first or second grade we even had a special teacher who visited the classes.

    We spent a year or so just practicing curves--no letter forms, just curves, and then in second grade, perhaps, we began producing letters. We were not allowed to use pencils, or, for that matter, ball point pens.

    Most of what passes for cursive today looks to me like big loopy printing.
  8. jinti

    jinti Senior Member

    I learned cursive in school back in the '70s and still use it daily, although not with all the extra flourishes I was taught. Mine is a streamlined version, but I see no harm in starting with the standard forms. You can personalize them later.

    I can't imagine printing everything I write by hand -- it's way slower than cursive for me and I just don't have the patience. I only print information on forms, things that must be read very accurately and aren't common words (like an email address), and anything for children.
  9. alada Senior Member

    Panama Spanish
    I went to catholic school back in the '70s and we were taught to write in cursive. I spent many hours doing calligraphy. Now I don't know what method my children are taught, but they have calligraphy books to practice on, but the truth is, their handwriting is apalling, horrendous. I think the method used is to increase their motor abilities and not to teach them per se, just to able them to copy what they see. That's why my kids cannot understand my handwriting, because they don't know the different aspects letters can have.

    I'm sorry, but every year I buy my kids a new calligraphy notebook and they have to finish it during their vacation, before going back to school, otherwise their handwriting would resemble ancient Mayan scripts.

    Nowadays, I still write in cursive, but because of the use of the keyboard and computers my handwiting is not looking as beautiful as my nuns showed me. That's why I have started writing actual letters to my friends abroad instead of just emails. I encourage everybody to do the same. Is nice to get things in the mail not only bills.
  10. Chaska Ñawi

    Chaska Ñawi modus borealis

    an old Ontario farmhouse
    Canadian English
    I teach my students to write in cursive, even though they won't see many examples of it anymore in the outside world. It's useful for several reasons:

    • it's easier for their pencil to keep up with their thoughts
    • it eliminates the problems of letter reversals
    • the children remember to leave spaces between the words
    • and, as a bonus, they can read their grandparents' birthday cards!

    Most of my younger colleagues neither use nor teach it.

    After years of taking notes at university, my handwriting is so bad that I use it only for note-taking and diaries. If I wish to communicate with other intelligent beings, I have to print.
  11. alada Senior Member

    Panama Spanish

    :thumbsup: ALL OF THE ABOVE!!!!


    My kids will have to understand mom's handwriting. Otherwise, how will they read my Will? :D
  12. brian

    brian Senior Member

    AmE (New Orleans)
    I'm a rather young American (23 at the moment), and I often feel like I'm one of the only people my age who writes in cursive, despite the fact that cursive-writing was one of my classes in elementary school.

    Then again, I went to a public school until 6th grade, and then catholic/private school afterwards, where most of the students had never gone to public schools in their lives. So there may be a public vs. private school difference.

    In any case, I find that most girls my age and younger (especially the younger ones) have basically the exact same handwriting--a bubbly, kind of semi-joined print that I would not consider cursive--while most guys have very distinct handwriting styles. Nonetheless, the majority of guys (I think) do not write in cursive. I've met some who write in cursive, and only a handful of girls who do.

    I personally think my handwriting is atrocious, but I attribute it more to my left-handedness than to my writing in cursive. However, I've gotten many compliments on my "beautiful" handwriting, but I think it's because people are so not used to seeing cursive, so it just looks interesting.
  13. alada Senior Member

    Panama Spanish
    Most of the women that graduated from private catholic schools here in Panama (such as myself) share the same style of cursive handwriting, and I believe it is called Palmer. Still nowadays most of these private catholic schools for girls (the few that still remain, most have gone mix) still teach them the Palmer method. My daughter goes to a private catholic school (mixed now, it used to be all-boys) but since it was all boys I don't think they make that big an emphasis on the handwriting as long as they can write legibly. But in private catholic schools that were former girls school even though they have boys now, they still stress calligraphy as one of the subjects.

    In any case, if I want my kids to have a fair handwriting, I have to take matters in my own hands and grilled them with calligraphy until Palmer himself comes down and release them from duty.

    and yes, most young Americans write in similar fashion, round letters, happy faces. I call that American calligraphy, and most girls tend to doodle and draw faces in ther writing, how funny!
  14. timpeac

    timpeac Senior Member

    English (England)
    I'm confused (not for the first time:D). Is "cursive" meant to mean strictly this very flowery style joined-up writing as illustrated by the links in the first post, or by "cursive" does this just mean "joined up" writing (ie writing in such a way that you don't remove the pen from the paper within the same word apart from in a few situations)?

    If the first, then I certainly wasn't taught to write like that and don't know anyone that does (including parents and grandparents!) If the second, then everyone I know writes like that (including very young members of the family) - what would the alternative be - leaving a gap between each letter? I was taught "joined up" writing at school - but not this flowery kind. My "b" for example looks like that typed "b" but having written it I would go from the bottom of the letter where I've ended up without taking my pen from the paper to the next letter.

    I have a feeling that I've got the wrong end of the stick in this thread...
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2009
  15. brian

    brian Senior Member

    AmE (New Orleans)
    Tim, my "b" looks like the one on the website (i.e. with a loop), but I don't consider it flowery. It's normal to me. :)

    I call that cursive, and I call anything else (like this text here) "print," though people who write exclusively in print tend to also "join up" their letters to write faster.

    Over the years I've had to write in print to make my writing legible--for example, filling out forms--and I've gotten pretty good at it, and have come up with my own ways of "joining up" letters. But I consider cursive to be 1000x easier to join up and write fast... I always thought that was the point of it, until I discovered what calligraphy was.
  16. timpeac

    timpeac Senior Member

    English (England)
    Oh right - well in that case I don't think anyone on this side of the pond writes like that then, including grandparents (let's start the countdown until I'm contradicted by dozens of "cursive" Brits - I give it 2 minutes)! I've only come across this type of writing from French people (and I always wondered why they wrote their "n"s like "m"s....:D

    Edit - actually post 3 and 4 above rather support my view, I suppose.
  17. kalamazoo Senior Member

    US, English
    Of course many people simply don't write anything by hand any more. I will go back and check the thank you notes from my high school-age nieces and see what handwriting they are using. I never noticed anything one way or another although I am pretty sure they don't write in "bubbly" style.
  18. panjandrum

    panjandrum Quondam Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    First, I should declare my personal interest.
    I write with pen and ink. I love the physical act of writing and the way the words flow out of the end of the pen. There is no equivalent satisfaction in typing onto a screen.
    Right, that is my obsession confessed.

    My 9-year-old granddaughter writes with "joined-up writing" and is taught this at school. Her style of writing is not the same as that shown in Epic's examples.
    I don't know anyone who writes like that.
    It is a particular stylised form that many of us were taught, but that most of us migrated away from over time.
  19. effeundici Senior Member

    Italian - Tuscany
    Well, in Italy all kids are taught to write cursive. No exceptions at all. To be honest, before reading this post I thought it was the only possible way of being taught at the primary school.

    Usually when we are 13/14, we start to write a personal mix of cursive and print writing.

    I've noticed that very uneducated people tend to stick to cursive for the rest of their lives, whereas people who keep studying develop a personal style

    This is a word which could be written by an adult italian

    It's artigiano which stands for craftsman
  20. Nanon

    Nanon Senior Member

    Entre Paris et Lisbonne
    français (France)
    This model of cursive handwriting is (still) taught in France. It hasn't changed much over the last, let's say, 50 years, maybe more.
    This is how children learn to read print and cursive writing at the same time and how "joined-up writing" actually looks.
    Before primary school, i.e. before they actually begin to learn and write, children learn to print their names, sometimes in capitals.
    Many adults (most of them) adopt their own mixture of the two models with a couple of additional ingredients... unless they become primary school teachers.
  21. toc Member

    English - UK
    That's exactly the kind of "joined-up writing"** I was taught at primary school in the 80s, starting from about the age of 8. This was at a normal British state school. I can remember having to trace the individual joined-up letters and various example sentences over and over again on photocopied sheets of paper. I personally hated having to change my already-developed writing style and I think being forced to write "joined-up" is the main reason I have such ugly handwriting as an adult. As far as I can remember, when we got past the first year of senior (high) school, the teachers stopped hassling people who preferred to use their own unorthodox style.

    (**Apart from the uppercase letters, we never joined those up).
  22. Forero Senior Member

    Houston, Texas, USA
    USA English
    Once a teacher where I went to secondary school discovered that a student had developed a special handwritten letter that looked like a T when the answer was True and like an F when the answer was False and had done rather well on several True-False tests by using it. From that day forward, teachers at the school had a morbid fear of individualized handwriting. My correct spelling of something like ecclesiatical "had to" be counted as wrong because my s looked to another student like a capital G.

    I practiced ss all afternoon until my s was cured of that particular ailment, but I lost my respect for "cursive" at that point.

    I believe there are competing forces in the U.S. to either force everyone to write cursive the same way or to dispense with cursive altogether, and the two camps take turns having the upper hand.
  23. sokol

    sokol Senior Member

    Vienna, Austria; raised in Upper Austria
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    In German language cursive handwriting still is taught in school, but there are different sets of cursive writing for Germany, Switzerland and Austria.
    Instead of completely dropping cursive handwriting, as they did (obviously) to a degree in English speaking nations, handwriting was simplified - the ones used now are less ornamental (see here the German Wiki page).

    In Austria a very few schools still use the old-fashioned cursive style from 1969, most schools have already switched to the reformed style from 1995.

    And plenty of school teachers even begin the introduction of letters with cursive handwriting: it is up to teachers to choose wether to begin with cursive or printing style, and as I deal in my job with schoolbooks I know that at least a third, probably more primary school teachers begin with cursive. - By the way, those who begin with printed letters also teach cursive writing at a later stage.
  24. aspar Member

    English UK
    This is a very interesting an vast subject with more than aesthetic importance.
    Having two children (7&5) who are in the middle of learning to write and read, we were a little at odds with what schools and people in general practice in France.
    Things also seem to have changed a lot since our own schooldays, especially with the dominance of computers, video games etc.
    The act of writing by hand (especially in cursive) is not just a graphic gesture but includes hand-eye coordination, fluency development and fine manual manipulation which are all important elements in general child development.
    In France there is very little agreement between academics as to the need of a coordinated effort to develop solid writing skills. After the first year of brave attempts by the teachers & children to learn the "official" curly cursive capitals, the majority abandon and opt for a mixture which very soon becomes personalised with more or less legible results at the adult stage.
    As parents, I believe we should take much more care to help our children construct solid (& why not beautiful) handwriting skills. It becomes a part of our self image, our "signature" and for a child it is a great confidence builder.
  25. Grop

    Grop Senior Member

    I *know* I learned writing with cursive, joined-up letters as Nanon showed in her links... And yet today I only know them passively: I wouldn't be able to produce many of them without looking them up. Also, I suspect it would look childish.

    (I mostly write print-style letters. A few of them get joined up).

    Edit: It would seem most people at my office use their own mix of letters; some letters look clearly like print letters, others are (often simplified) cursive letters. These two kinds of letters may coexist in a single word.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2009
  26. cherine

    cherine Moderator

    Alexandria, Egypt
    Arabic (Egypt).
    Mod reminder:

    This thread has been moved here from the English Only forum, where it didn't belong. Now that it's in the Cultural forum, I'd like to remind all contributors that the guidelines of this forum state that we should all give a little bit more than just our personal opinions. Personal experiences are useful too, as long as they reflect a trend in one's country, schooling...
    Please, every one, try to tell us a bit about the general view of this topic in your country/culture. This will enrich the thread and our knowledge of each other's culture.

    Thanks :)
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2009
  27. Vanda

    Vanda Moderesa de Beagá

    Belo Horizonte, BRASIL
    Português/ Brasil
    Here, almost like in French, we used to learn this cursive handwriting (I have the impression it is still being taught at school). Children learn this kind of writing since the very 1st year of elementary school but as they grow up their handwriting changes. Teenagers, girls mainly, write the letter i with a heart or a small ball in the place of the dot, and most of the boys have a handwriting very close to a hieroglyph. Well, when they write, because nowadays who cares to handwrite if you can type a text on the cell phone, right? I used to admire USA students' handwriting, as it looked very uniform to me.

    When I was an adolescent writing was a passion for me! I used to almost draw the letters, so much I liked it! And I'd fill pages and pages with beautiful drawn letters. I miss those days because, quoting Chaska: "After years of taking notes at university, my handwriting is so bad that I use it only for note-taking and diaries." I am in the same boat. Damn computer nowadays makes handwriting a painfull task for me!
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2009
  28. aspar Member

    English UK
    Being an architect by profession I was obliged very early on to explore and master all kinds of writing and printing by hand. In our job it even becomes a sort of trademark and status symbol. However, I have always enjoyed writing by hand in cursive (essays, notes, reports, letters) and I avoid typing went it is not necessary. I have managed to keep my original "purity" in cursive without mixing it with print because the style of capitals I learned were not as difficult as those my children still learn at French primary school today.
    At university level, the majority of work handed in for marking is hand written. Even at second year level studying French grammar, spelling and usage is obligatory in most study fields, probably because there is a real need for it. When confronted about the atrociousness of their handwriting, some of my 20 year old French students laugh it off saying that with computers and spellchecks, neat writing and correct spelling is "passé".
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2009
  29. toc Member

    English - UK
    Or if the child just doesn't have the natural ability to produce beautiful cursive handwriting (as it is an artistic skill after all), even though he/she might be otherwise academically strong, it can also be a great confidence knocker if the inability to produce such handwriting is seen as a defect.
  30. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    I can not only tell you about the 'joined-up writing' (or 'longhand' as it was more officially known) I was taught as a child, I can actually show you.
    This is from my school 'practice' or 'rough' book, dated 21st August 1973* (I was 9 years 2 months at the time, so it really was practice rather than learning by that stage.)
    I would, however, like to emphasize that we were taught to print at the same time. This is from the same book a month later (20/09/73). 'Joined-up' was 'for best'; print was for day-to-day stuff. The two styles were considered separate disciplines.
    Yes, disciplines. Learning to write is about learning to discipline one's hand into producing what you want it to produce: I've always been slightly mystified by people who say, "Oh my handwriting is atrocious ~ I can't do a thing with it" ~ people who have managed to train their hand (or hands ~ both of them! at once!) to do stuff that is far trickier and more fiddle-faddley.
    I think I was just about to go off into a rant about the lack of discipline involved in using only one thumb to reproduce one's deepest thoughts :)rolleyes:) ... But I shall resist. I suppose it's a 'skill' of a kind. :)rolleyes:)

    Nowadays I generally print (26/08/08); I use a kind of longhand when I need to write something very very fast ... but (shame on me:eek::D) find it quite difficult to read afterwards.

    *I don't think I've produced a capital T, V or Z like that since about 1974!
  31. brian

    brian Senior Member

    AmE (New Orleans)
    That's gotta be both the cutest and most hilarious thing I've seen in a long time (8. Who threw that sausage? :confused::D) Thanks, ewie.

    But to give this post at least some semblance of credibly on-topic justification, let me point out that your "joined-up writing" is almost exactly the same as my "cursive" (except, like Forero, I've phased out some of the capital letters, like the 2-looking Q, which you didn't use) and indeed quite different from the "joined-up writing" that timpeac uses. (He sent me a picture via e-mail, and maybe we can get him to post it here.)
  32. timpeac

    timpeac Senior Member

    English (England)
    I don't think we learnt this at school - we did do "joined up" but it was much much less loopy.
    Not sure how - but I have no objection to you posting it if you like:).
  33. sokol

    sokol Senior Member

    Vienna, Austria; raised in Upper Austria
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    (My emphasis.)

    That reminds me: in Austria, where as I wrote everyone still learns cursive, it is considered something of a "lack of development" if you continue to write in cursive handwriting as taught at school. This was probably not so some time ago ... my mother for example still is used to write exactly as she learned to write in school.

    Nowadays, most kids develop their own cursive style during adolescense - it is even considered part of developping an own identity; teenagers even practise elaborated signatures and odd styles.
    (I certainly did when I was in my teens. :) I even changed styles several times before finally settling on what I still use.)
    And if you'd use a "schoolish" cursive without any personalisations even beyond your puberty people might think you never quite developped a "personality".
  34. rmawhorter Member

    British Columbia, Canada
    English - Canada
    In Canada children are taught manuscript writing in grades 1 through 3 and then in
    about grade 4 they switch to cursive writing. The original poster's links are pretty much exactly what is taught. I think that most children end up ditching it once their teacher let up on them. I managed to retain very close to the style of those two examples with some slight simplification of the capital letters. My husband still uses all the curls but he was homeschooled so that probably doesn't represent the norm for Canada.

    I personally find cursive writing much quicker than manuscript writing. I think that it's important, at the very least, to be able to read it quickly. I plan to teach my children to write well in cursive script because I think that it's a skill worth having.

    For what it's worth, I'm 28 years old.
  35. aspar Member

    English UK
    Our children (7&5) are learning to write at school according to Montessori principles, where for kids between 2 & 4 yrs old almost every manual and practical activity is carefully constructed to guide & reinforce the hand movements (right and left hands equally) which will later become the movements of cursive writing. Cut-out moveable alphabets in card & sand-paper at this age are all in cursive only and even the first reading exercises are all done from booklets written in cursive.
    Of course, there are huge (even scientific) debates about the necessity or not of installing a solid base in cursive handwriting at an early age, but we have seen for our girls that there are surprising spin-off benefits in other areas of development (not necessarily artistic) when one puts in a bit more effort in the beginning.
  36. wildan1

    wildan1 Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)

    The examples of cursive writing in the Epic's links at the beginning of this thread are what are on classroom walls all over the US. It is the Palmer Method, which originated in the early 20th Century. The examples are the same ones I looked at back when I was in school in the 1960s. Most Americans do write that way in a less stiff, more stylized manner as they mature.

    The handwriting many Brits seem to learn looks like a kind of fast calligraphy to me. It's very attractive, but not at all taught in US schools unless it is part of an art course.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2009
  37. Wilma_Sweden

    Wilma_Sweden Senior Member

    Lund, Sweden
    Swedish (Scania)
    In Sweden they used to teach print writing first, then cursive writing. I'm part of the generation that was subjected to handwriting classes with marked exams! Our cursive style was very similar to Nanon's French example above.

    In the seventies, a new simplified writing style was developed and taught at most schools. It looks more like print than cursive, but the letters are joined all the same. Good neat handwriting wasn't enforced, though.

    For those of you who are seriously into this topic, I found a book called "Handwriting of the twentieth century" by Rosemary Sassoon, which covers a wide range of facts and history about handwriting styles, including samples from various countries.

  38. englishman Senior Member

    English England
    "cursive" is essentially any type of hand writing that is designed to make writing easy, and in English this is usually what Brits would call "joined up" writing. There are many different forms of cursive writing, and the flowery script is what I would call "copperplate".

    I was taught copperplate at school in England in the early 1970s but never learnt it properly, so my writing is essentially a self-invented joined-up cursive form. (We were only taught copperplate for lower case letters though, not for capitals - they were always printed. As far as I remember the letters were identical to those in the French example)

    My father was taught copperplate at school in England in the 1930s (I guess) and used it all his life.
  39. aspar Member

    English UK
    Good evening / morning everyone
    Perhaps nostalgia about how we all wrote when we were young reflects cultural diversity and a longing for the past. How do the younger members experience these transformations ? Do they value the ability to communicate "by hand", do the so-called advantages of cursive encourage them to master this form of handwriting, or have they adopted a more pragmatic approach?
    Where I live in France, owning and using your personal fountain pen is still a major event for children when they start to write and even later many students stay very attached to their fountain pens, even though they haven't specially perfected a cursive style. Not that fountain pens are easier to use than ball-point pens to write fluent cursive, on the contrary.
    The amazing paradox in the western world is that the printed word is not cursive, but that western culture developed a "faster" form of writing which is never printed.
    Handwriting in other cultures (arabic, chinese and others) has simply maintained what was originally handwritten and tranferred it into printed form, without inventing more "practical" typefaces just for printing.
    Maybe the historians among us can tell us how Europeans wrote before printing began.
  40. winegrower Senior Member

    In Greece the situation is exactly the same with that described by F11 for Italy. Kalligrafia we call it and for many people it is a form of art, once flourishing in the works of byzantine icon painters and still nowadays among Arabs and Chinese.
    In the western world it was killed by Guttenberg!
    Unfortunately the advent of modern Greek language with the monotonic system changed many things, but there are still many people using it, even in computer fonts.
  41. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima (English Only)

    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Ewie, amazing that you've retained your copy books, etc! I wish I still had some of mine. Your longhand looks like what we were taught at school. (You''re a couple of years younger than me, but we're essentially from the same era.) Children here (in Singapore) now wouldn't know how to write like that. My children's general handwriting looks like your 9-year-old print.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2009
  42. Forero Senior Member

    Houston, Texas, USA
    USA English
    I think what my son was supposedly being taught in the early 1990s was something called d'Nealian writing method. I may not have the spelling right. If I am remembering correctly, I think it was basically printed letters that could be joined together.
  43. sokol

    sokol Senior Member

    Vienna, Austria; raised in Upper Austria
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    I won't go into detail here as this is a thread about contemporary styles of handwriting. :)

    But for the record - the contrast between two written styles existed also in the past. Even the Egypts already had, alongside their hieroglyphs, demotic script which was cursive. The same was true in the Roman Empire - Latin was written with both a monumental script and a cursive writing, and the same again throughout European Middle Ages.

    And as the example of English shows, where many teachers already gave up on cursive writing, it is already obvious from discussion so far that a new "cursive" writing has developped, the so-called "joined up" writing; it will over time probably develop into a cursive script in its own right - if it hasn't already. :)
  44. roxcyn

    roxcyn Senior Member

    American English [AmE]
    Hello -Epic-, how are you? :). As you see that website is from Illinois (in USA). As I look through many book that teach handwriting they do show that type of style. Generally people here learn it in elementary (primary) school. They will be required to write it a number of years to know how to write it.

    If you want to learn cursive? Well that website is a good start. As many foreros have said there are many different types of cursive that people use. While some people don't write that exact style it's a good start. I no long write in cursive. I find print easier. The links that Nanon (post 20), Vanda (post 27), & Ewie (post 30) posted show good models.

    Many of my teachers required the use of spelling. Students had to spell out the words: true / false. If they simply marked T or F, the question was marked wrong. Of course they would announce that at the beginning of the year. The tests always said to spell it out. I think that is a good trick for teachers because the students can't claim that the T was actually the F or vice versa. As for spelling tests, my teachers always made it clear to write clearly. If they cannot "read" the letters then the item was wrong. Which, if you think about it, is correct. If someone cannot read your writing then you cannot communicate effectively as a writer, right? ;)
  45. zdrastvuite Senior Member

    Monterrey, Mexico
    United States-English
    The links that -Epic- posted are exactly how I learned cursive. We learned cursive in third grade, and from there on, were only allowed to write in cursive. We also had handwriting homework where we would copy text out of books in order to practice. Most people younger than me (my little brother, for example, who is eight years younger) have trouble reading my handwriting. I never write in print unless I'm filling out paperwork. Cursive is much faster for me.

    I don't think cursive is emphasized as much as it once was, and the letters seem to have been simplified. I think cursive is elegant and classy--definitely worth learning! As you become more comfortable with it, you will probably develop your own original style. Good luck, -Epic-!
  46. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)
    They plan to stop teaching cursive writing in Czech schools, I am not sure about Hungary. But so far both in Hungary and the Czech republic cursive handwriting has been taught at schools. The truth is I really think it is getting less important now, so I'd agree with them to stop teaching it.
  47. Hulalessar Senior Member

    English - England
    But who will be around to read it?
  48. merquiades

    merquiades Senior Member

    USA Northeast
    I learnt cursive writing at school for several years, but never was able to do it very well. I stopped trying and reverted back to printing probably about the time it was no longer obligatory, maybe age 12-13 in school. Although I never write cursive I think it was important to learn it because you find it everywhere and have to decipher it (all those loops, dots and crosses, s like f, z almost like a y). I find that Europeans tend to use cursive more than Americans. Same thing with those personalized signatures, that I never saw until I came to France. Anyway I wouldn't drop learning cursive from any curriculum.
  49. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)
    Read what?
  50. Hulalessar Senior Member

    English - England
    Cursive writing.

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