National Handwriting Day


Today is National Handwriting Day!

While you may find yourself typing at a keyboard or dictating a text most days, think of the last time you received a letter, thank you note, or card through snail mail.  What a gift! You knew the person had thought of you and cared enough to find a pen and paper to tell you so.


In addition to feeling good to the recipient, the act of handwriting is good for the writer.  According to Dr. William R. Klemm in Psychology Today,

… scientists are discovering that learning cursive is an important tool for cognitive development, particularly in training the brain to learn “functional specialization”[2]—that is, the capacity for optimal efficiency. In the case of learning cursive writing, the brain develops functional specialization that integrates both sensation, movement control, and thinking.”

There is a spill-over benefit for thinking skills used in reading and writing. To write legible cursive, fine motor control is needed over the fingers. You have to pay attention and think about what and how you are doing it. You have to practice. Brain imaging studies show that cursive activates areas of the brain that do not participate in keyboarding.”  

Now that you know it’s good for the brain, parents of students at Ambleside have another reason to be thankful they are in a school where Handwriting is an area of study.  Students first master D’Nealian manuscript writing and then are introduced to Spencerian writing, practicing form, size, and style. Through written narration, dictation, and handwriting practice, they are expanding their ability to think well through the 8th grade.

We expect our graduates will enjoy some of these hidden benefits of handwriting by being able to:  

  1. Quickly jot ideas down in writing to help connect and clarify their thoughts.   

  2. Take notes effectively in high school and college.

  3. Impress a future boss with a personal note after a job interview.

  4. Thank family and friends for gifts or visits.

  5. Set themselves apart from a pool of job candidates.

  6. Express sympathy in writing to someone who is ill or grieving.

  7. Show love to a spouse or child on a special occasion.

  8. ...and the list goes on and on.  

- Debra Christenson, Ambleside Board Member

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