Public schools in America are no longer required to teach cursive to students. There is the technological age to thank for this. With the majority of writing being done on computers nowadays, it seems pointless to spend class time teaching students a skill that they will not use very much in the future. With cursive becoming redundant, is handwriting itself soon to fall by the wayside? Not necessarily; there are still reasons to value good handwriting.
First, handwriting is not dead in the same sense that cursive is “dead.” While it is likely that you cannot recall having to write anything besides your signature in cursive for the past year or so, you can probably remember writing out a grocery list or leaving a note for a friend or coworker. Handwriting remains a part of daily lives even if it is not used in every single instance of written communication. Therefore, it is a skill that must be cultivated.
Handwriting is also one of the many ways that you can leave a good impression, particularly in the workplace. Suppose that you have to write a note to your boss a few days after being hired-or, more importantly, that your application has a handwritten portion. If your handwriting is sloppy, your boss will form a negative impression of you, but if your handwriting is neat, he or she will believe that you are a conscientious worker. Neat, careful handwriting can help you to maintain any first impressions that you make.
The fact that many people do not care to keep their handwriting skills in shape nowadays means that you have an opportunity to put yourself ahead of the pack by having good handwriting. It may not seem like much of an advantage, but being known as that person who has great handwriting is one way to earn respect amongst your peers.
There are some instances in which you may actually prefer handwriting to computer writing. When you are communicating with a close friend or family member, writing a letter by hand, rather than sending it electronically, is a good way to show that you put some time and effort into your message. Furthermore, handwriting encourages a longer writing form than e-mails, which tend to be shorter, however, you don’t want to give your loved one a letter that is difficult to read. You should make sure that you have good handwriting for these purposes.
Finally, advanced handwriting skills are relevant in certain forms of visual art. Calligraphy, the art of writing in elegant and visually pleasing script, has been practiced for hundreds of years. Also, the ability to create pleasing lettering is helpful in graphic design.
Handwriting may be used less today than it was twenty years ago, but it is still important to keep up your handwriting skills. It is likely that good handwriting will continue to be important even fifty years from now.