Do the hand movements associated with handwriting mastery play a pivotal role in the development of thinking and language capacities?

Asked by: katherinecollmer
  • The repetitive movements of the hand provide integral brain connections that facilitate both reading and writing skills.

    Neurologist Frank Wilson, author of The Hand: How its Use Shapes the Brain, Language and Human Culture, addresses the repetitive movements of the hand during handwriting practice in his book. Research conducted by Florida's International University's College of Education found that
    second-grade students who received good grades on fine motor writing tasks in pre-k had an average GPA of 3.02 in math and 2.84 in reading (B averages). However, students who did poorly on pre-k fine motor writing tasks achieved an average GPA of 2.30 in math and 2.12 in reading (C averages) in second grade. And researchers describe handwriting as a language, one that includes a physical act – using your hand to form and connect letters – that may provide the brain with a more active involvement in the process and brings the information being scribed to our attention. The underlying skills that are required for the mastery of handwriting are the very same skills that we use to learn and succeed in school.

  • Handwriting and other methods of Motor Output Clearly Effect Thinking and Language Skills

    I have to say that I cannot believe in this day and age, there is still a discussion of whether or not handwriting is important to learning. If a student's handwriting is not automatic-no matter what the scenario- in order for handwriting not to affect the grade- that is what they are focusing on and not the material being written. I am currently working on another book about taking notes. I cannot see how handwriting does not affect a student's ability to take notes. Because handwriting is so hard for some students, they just stop and say "I can't do this." Of course there are other methods of taking notes, such as using short hand, keyboarding and recording, some sort of motor output is required to prove that learning has taken place. Of course there are many, many other aspects to this skill but just not being able to hand write legibly is a major frustration and source of failure to many students who otherwise may do quite well.

  • It doesn't always.

    I can tell you from personal experience that it does not. I am a G/T student with straight A's and an IQ of 150 and my handwriting it absolutely horrible. I have won many trophies and medals for public speaking, and I always get 100's on my expository papers (they're typed out)/

  • No, this is a different part of the brain

    Children who struggle with handwriting are not the ones who struggle with creativity. In fact many have creativity and language in abundance. They often struggle with other fine motor skills like tying shoe laces, art, crafts, playing a musical instrument, touch typing, shop, sewing, knitting and so on. But many are wonderfully expressive.

  • Studies have shown...

    Studies have shown that the ministry of handwriting has undertaken a massive change to the layout of link script. Rules are now in placle that the link between letters is to be a minimum of 2 cm in length. Due to the inconvinience of the old link script these changes will be enforced upon the completion of the death star.

  • If it is then I'm not a very good example

    My handwriting is pretty much only legible to myself. I also find the 'normal' pencil grip to feel uncomfortable. Yet I spend a great deal of my spare time writing and have a large vocabulary. I also love logic puzzles.

    Perhaps in my case I learn well because my motivation is different. Most people just want grades or social praise. I've always loved to learn for its own sake. While others go out to bars and clubs I stay in and read, mostly non-fiction.

    Also worth noting that when I was in school I usually typed assignments, and would proofread hand-written math assignments pretending I was the teacher in order to see whether the teacher would be able to read them. Although a few times in high school the teacher did tell me to rewrite it because she couldn't read it.

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