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Old 06-05-2011, 10:23 AM   #21
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Typical of humans that they would develop two totally separate ways of writing. Even within each type of writing (that is, block or cursive) there are two separate ways of writing each letter (uppercase and lowercase). So in that sense, this is a good thing.

Why are we so standards-challenged?
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:25 AM   #22
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Sigh. So further goes the decline of western civilization....

We were also required to learn "penmanship". I was often told I should be a physician because I already had the handwriting down pat.
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:29 AM   #23
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It is not just Physicians who have bad handwriting . After forty years of writing Nurse's Notes or filling in forms in Procedure rooms my writing is mainly printing . Sr. Damien would be so sad !
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:40 AM   #24
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In school in Ireland, I learnt to write in English as well as Irish (Gaelic) script. I used to win prizes for my penmanship. Then I became a doctor....

Seriously though, good penmanship is still very important in my world. Most healthcare facilities still have paper charts, and most people use cursive rather than print to write patients' progress notes. When I am reviewing the chart of a complex patient, I really, really appreciate good penmanship. Not decorative and flowery, but clear and legible. The nurses generally write more clearly than the doctors (eh, Moe?) and there was one particular physician that I worked with whose notes were completely illegible to me. OTOH, there was another physician whose notes were in beautiful, legible cursive script. Guess whose notes got my full attention?
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Old 06-05-2011, 11:28 AM   #25
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It is not just Physicians who have bad handwriting . After forty years of writing Nurse's Notes or filling in forms in Procedure rooms my writing is mainly printing . Sr. Damien would be so sad !
She might raise an eyebrow at the insertion of spaces before punctuation marks, though .
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Old 06-05-2011, 11:30 AM   #26
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I learned cursive, was taught in 4th grade when I was in elem and we were "allowed" to use fountain/cartridge pens (below), I wonder if they even make them anymore?
I remember using those in school. We also used to use the non-cartridge pens and carried bottles of ink around in our satchels. Imagine the potential for mayhem with all those schoolkids and their little bottles of blue and black ink........

This thread has made me realize that while I smugly thought that I could still write cursive, what I actually produce is an odd combination of cursive and block, which is probably more block than cursive - and a page full of it doesn't look as attractive as it used to

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Old 06-05-2011, 11:57 AM   #27
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Realize that although writing cursive might require considerable education, learning to READ cursive is pretty trivial. If an adult can't pick that up in a few hours he or she has bigger problems. It's essentially just a new font.
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:20 PM   #28
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She might raise an eyebrow at the insertion of spaces before punctuation marks, though .
I would definetely get the ruler swat for my punctuation and be given ten Hail Mary's to say .
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:50 PM   #29
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I remember using those in school. We also used to use the non-cartridge pens and carried bottles of ink around in our satchels. Imagine the potential for mayhem with all those schoolkids and their little bottles of blue and black ink........

This thread has made me realize that while I smugly thought that I could still write cursive, what I actually produce is an odd combination of cursive and block, which is probably more block than cursive - and a page full of it doesn't look as attractive as it used to

Congratulations! You have invented some version of D'Nealian which is/was used in many schools to teach kids to connect the dots between block letters and cursive. D'Nealian is block letters with tails (simple explanation) and once you connect the tails you have cursive.

D'Nealian.jpg

dnelean3.jpg
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:56 PM   #30
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Most healthcare facilities still have paper charts, and most people use cursive rather than print to write patients' progress notes.
As a patient I've seen changes in this just in the last couple of years. At my physician's office virtually everything is now done on computer. I saw my physician yesterday and he walked in with a computer and made notes on the computer and reviewed all my old notes and test results on computer. Same thing a few months ago at the OBGYN. Same when I had some tests done at the hospital.

I do see that having two forms of handwriting - cursive and printing - seems unnecessary when so little is handwritten any more.

As I read this thread I do think a lot of my son. He is dysgraphic. Dysgraphia is difficulty in handwriting (it can also refer to other difficulties in written expression but most people are talking about difficulties in handwriting when they refer to it). This is a true disability.

My son had horribly bad handwriting as a child. He would bring home homework in 3rd grade that would require writing 3 short sentences and it could literally take him over an hour per sentence and was illegible at the end.

Thankfully we realized this wasn't normal and had him evaluated and this was classified as a disability. We did try to teach him better handwriting but truthfully none of it did much good. What did help was getting accommodations early in school to allow him to keyboard his work. There are unfortunately teachers who still see the inability to write or color neatly as being indicative of lack of ability.

He is in college now but still can't hand write very well. He does have an accommodation that he is allowed to type all essays and written tests. When he was evaluated they had him write to a prompt both in handwriting and on computer and it made a huge, huge difference in the amount and quality of his output (for non-disabled people it makes a small difference but not a huge difference).

Over the years he has gotten a bit better at handwriting. He can form letters more quickly but they are still not very legible. You might think looking at his handwriting that is illiterate. Actually his written compositions are very good (he is currently planning to major in English) so long as he handwrites. When he has to hand write his work is very short and simplistic.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:04 PM   #31
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Typical of humans that they would develop two totally separate ways of writing. Even within each type of writing (that is, block or cursive) there are two separate ways of writing each letter (uppercase and lowercase). So in that sense, this is a good thing.

Why are we so standards-challenged?
Standards you say? We love them of course, have thousands.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:48 PM   #32
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Argh...Penmanship books, page upon page of writing all the letters of the alphabet, then words, then sentences, on tightly spaced lines...over and over again with a cartridge pen.
I'm a dominant left-hander, so imagine me as a child trying to "crook" my left hand into a most uncomfortable curled position, keeping the book slanted the same way as the right-handers (no the nuns didn't allow me to tilt my book the "other way"), AND not smear the fresh ink onto my white uniform blouse sleeve or edge of my hand.
No wonder I developed carpal tunnel and tendinitis problems (worse in the left hand) later in life.
My handwriting today is a combo of cursive and block lettering. It is very readable, but tough for me to do except in small doses.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:54 PM   #33
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I feel your pain! As a little kid I showed a preference for being a lefty as well; a poorly informed, well meaning and very strict teacher set about to reform me and would only allow right handedness. I actually was forced to hold a glass of water in my left hand during all writing practice for several months to help me 'focus' on right hand form. My handwriting is illegible and I still have authority issue many years latter
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Old 06-05-2011, 04:00 PM   #34
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I could never see the point of cursive and reverted back to printing as soon as it was allowed in school. Some of the capital letters in cursive are ridiculous.

That said, my grandparents' (born in late 1870's) handwriting was beautiful.
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Old 06-05-2011, 04:13 PM   #35
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Not stone, Big Chief...
YES! 4th grade, Cheyenne Wyoming - had to use the Big Chief Tablet per the teacher, Mrs Beeman - a terror! The curled and set short gray hair and cats-eye glasses! She wrote beautiful cursive - I got a C in that class - still don't write very legibly, but still do write cursive sometimes.
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Old 06-05-2011, 04:26 PM   #36
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This is what we used, 1 subject per notebook.

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Old 06-05-2011, 04:26 PM   #37
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I say good riddance to cursive. My penmanship was so horrible that in the third grade my mom made me spend several hours a week under the watchful eye of a retired teacher practicing. My fine motor skills have always been atrocious and the hours of practice did little to help. Early on I told my mom, "I don't need to learn this, I'll type" and it turns out I was completely right since I took typing early on. I imagine if they were testing for Dysgraphia back in the day I would have been a candidate.

Now as an old fogy I'll complain that many schools are dropping the instruction of long division since it provides "fundamental understanding of mathematical concepts". However, realistically I know that it is very rare child or adult, who isn't with easy access of a device capable of doing division at all times.
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Old 06-05-2011, 04:51 PM   #38
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I feel your pain! As a little kid I showed a preference for being a lefty as well; a poorly informed, well meaning and very strict teacher set about to reform me and would only allow right handedness. I actually was forced to hold a glass of water in my left hand during all writing practice for several months to help me 'focus' on right hand form. My handwriting is illegible and I still have authority issue many years latter
They used to think that caused stuttering, too (The King's Speech movie alludes to that).
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:39 PM   #39
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There are unfortunately teachers who still see the inability to write or color neatly as being indicative of lack of ability.
I used to hear this from my supervisors all the time. And I recopied a lot of logs for legibility...

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I'm a dominant left-hander, so imagine me as a child trying to "crook" my left hand into a most uncomfortable curled position, keeping the book slanted the same way as the right-handers (no the nuns didn't allow me to tilt my book the "other way"), AND not smear the fresh ink onto my white uniform blouse sleeve or edge of my hand.
I think that's why our little left-handed one learned to type when she was in 2nd grade. Plenty of software and tutoring programs for it, and she really got into it.

Spouse is left-handed as well, so I'm made to be keenly aware of the issues.

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I feel your pain! As a little kid I showed a preference for being a lefty as well; a poorly informed, well meaning and very strict teacher set about to reform me and would only allow right handedness.
As a lapsed musician, I'm genuinely curious-- do you play your Fender "upside-down"?
Famous Left-hander Profile - Jimi Hendrix
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:41 PM   #40
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Since I type for 8 hours a day, I barely invest any time in block writing. I was coerced into learning cursive at some distant point in my youth but that's a long faded memory.

The difference between signing my name and signing my full name is that I try and throw a few extra squiggles in there so they don't quite match.

However, I do have a Moleskine notepad for when I go out so I can blend in with the cool kids.
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