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Past Blog-Pencil and paper obsoloete?

January 25, 2015
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Pencil and Paper Writing keeps children and adults alert.

Our student's future writing tool.

Student’s future writing tool.

What!!! While reading the Sunday Parade (September 21, 2014), I read an article by Melinda Wenner Moyer discussing that the Common Core Standards, established in 2010, put in place to guide education curricula across the states, are requiring schools teach handwriting only in kindergarten and first grade. Unfortunately, for students in subsequent grades, the focus will no longer be handwriting with pencil and paper, but writing via typing. To this idea, I say What!!!  I hope this is not true.  Research shows that writing by hand helps in many areas, such as letter recognition, which may be a strong predictor of reading success, writing at lengths and thinking more deeply about subject matter.
In a study conducted by Karin James, Ph. D, a psychologist at Indiana University, she and several of her colleagues studied 5-year olds and found that when 5-year olds wrote by hand they accessed parts of the brain known to support reading mastery. This psychologist went on to say that, there is benefit to students when they have the opportunity for messiness of writing to take place. This means that no two letters are a like when written numerous times.  This variation in letter writing may help them recognize letter’s basic characteristics.  However, the region that is accessed by handwriting ceases to be activated when students type or trace.
Other studies have shown that adults benefit from writing as well. When adults write letters and longer pieces of prose by hand rather than typing (which I did before typing this piece), they are able to write more and process the material at a deeper level.  In another study of college students, the researched stated that students that took notes by hand instead of typing were better able to answer deeper questions about the material and developed better understanding of the material.
So, if your student is in an environment where handwriting is taking place via technology, encourage them to write out their piece first, because it will allow them to think more deeply, they will be faster and they will share more than they would if they were typing on the computer. If your words fall on deaf ears, contact New Tampa Tutors and let our knowledgeable tutors encourage, inspire and teach your student handwriting (manuscript or cursive) through pencil and paper writing.

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