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California Implements New Law Mandating Cursive Writing Instruction in Schools, Followed by 17 Other States
While many countries around the world are focused on incorporating keyboards into musical instruments, one state has recently passed a law to ensure that students are still taught the traditional skill of handwriting.
California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed a bill into law that mandates the teaching of cursive writing in schools across the state.
California Assembly Bill 446 has been amended to include instructions on cursive or joined italics for grades one through six.
The bill’s author, California Assembly Member Sharon Quirk-Silva, stated that the purpose of the law is to enable students to read and write in cursive, allowing them to access primary source historical documents.
“A lot of historical documents from a few decades ago are actually written in cursive,” Quirk-Silva, a former elementary school teacher, explained. “When I was searching for my family records on 23andMe, I found that they were all written in cursive.”
Although the teaching of cursive may seem outdated, it can actually enhance students’ learning capabilities.
A 2020 study conducted by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology found that students who write in cursive activate different electrical activity in their brains compared to typing. The study also argued that children should learn to write by hand successfully while also learning to type on a keyboard.
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Other states mandating the teaching of cursive
California is not alone in reintroducing cursive writing into its educational curriculum. Seventeen other states have laws that require the teaching of cursive. These states are:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina