Friday, May 22, 2009

Teaching Cursive?


Heck, I'm not just teaching cursive, I'm also teaching calligraphy. I think it teaches important motor skills to be able to manipulate the writing implement in different manners and yet still make a legible script.

As a personal trainer, I work with many neurological client (those who've had strokes and such). When trying to strengthen the mind and how it communicates with the body as a whole, I work 2 things: 1) repetition and 2) multi-planar manipulation. Number 1 is obvious, the only way to improve at anything is through high repetitions. Number 2 means taking the same concept and approaching it in multiple fashions - with PT it means planes of motion (front-back, side-side, and rotation) but with all other commands from the brain it also means approaching the same concept (like writing) in different manners (print, cursive, block, calligraphy, etc) not only does this strengthen the writing skills, but forcing a student to repeat similar information in this manner also solidifies the knowledge in their minds and makes recall easier...for instance. I can teach what a diphthong is, and I can give examples...but on an SAT later in life it might list different examples than the ones I'm given. I can hope that their minds will recognize the pattern, or I can get them comfortable to seeing those patterns in multiple lights making a change less, well, different. IMO.

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