Friday, January 13, 2006

National Handwriting Day

Today is National Handwriting Day, in celebration of John Hancock's birthday. Take part by writing a note to someone in your own personal script. Have your students put extra effort into their handwriting today. Create an oversized birthday card to John Hancock and have each member of your class write an anonymous message in their best handwriting. Let the class try to guess the author of the message based on the handwriting alone.

If you think handwriting is a lost skill in the age of computers, think again! High school students taking the SATs are now required to hand write a two page essay in 25 minutes. This requires thinking and writing quickly! Handwriting is not counted, but it does have to be legible in order to be scored.

In school, writing by hand is one of the most common ways we expect students to demonstrate their acquired knowledge. Making it an automatic and effortless skill is essential in order for students to concentrate on the content of what they are expressing. Unfortunately, many students struggle with this basic task. Here is a nice exercise to experience "graphomotor" difficulty. Imagine how it may interfere with school performance. Go to :

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