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April 2, 2013

Teacher colleges join digital trend

JOPLIN, Mo. — The trend toward de-emphasizing cursive writing is also occurring at universities that prepare teachers for the classroom.

At Pittsburgh (Kan.) State University, students preparing to be elementary teachers are instructed not to teach cursive as a stand-alone activity but rather to incorporate it into writing projects, said assistant professor Kristi Stuck.

She said the purpose is to teach youngsters  “about the process of writing through the methods of writing” and not worry about the attractiveness of their penmanship.

The Education Department at Missouri Southern State University, in Joplin, Mo., prepares future teachers to instruct in “very straightforward letters without lots of curls,” said associate professor Becky Gallemore.

Student teachers are also taught how best to teach computer keyboarding and other technology skills, said Gallemore.

Still, she said, cursive writing remains important to everyday communication.

“What if you don’t have a computer handy and you have to leave a note for your secretary?” asked Gallemore. “Are you going to print it? It’s going to take you three times as long. It’s just much faster to write in cursive.”

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Details for this story were provided by the Joplin, Mo., Globe.

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