A pen which vibrates when it detects its owner making a mistake is to undergo testing in schools. The Lernstift or “learning pen”, does not require ink or special paper to work and uses an internal gyroscope to work out what is being written. Watch on BBC News
Here you can find news from the NHA and also links to international news about Handwriting.
The friends of good handwriting worldwide may — or may not — be aware of some very large-scale research (n=2500) on speed and legibility, which is old enough that it should be replicated today.
Note the attached PDF (title page, showing citation data, and two following pages), which summarizes a VERY large-scale research study of italic and other handwriting (2500+ students, ages 7-19, in 23 schools) that was published in 1952 (62 years ago!) in a UK journal called THE SCHOOLMASTER (the organ of the UK’s National Union of Teachers, and now re-titled JOURNAL OF THE NATIONAL UNION OF TEACHERS).
The author, Percy Wood, was a government inspector of schools.
Though the article is brief enough, and well-thought-out enough, to deserve careful reading in full, the “hard” data on handwriting will be found on its last page. These data include the sample size and composition (2500+ students, ages 7 through 19, at 23 schools) along with data on the speed and legibility of writers in the various styles used.
Ms. Berninger noted that when students struggle with handwriting, “people usually think, well, just put them on the computer.” But her studies of normally developing and struggling students learning handwriting suggest that may not be the solution. “It turns out that many of the problems relating to why they have trouble learning handwriting might also affect how they use a keyboard.”
Karin Harman-James of Indiana University in Bloomington based her findings on results from functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or fMRI, scans taken of children as they wrote and typed. The brain scans indicated that “handwriting, not keyboarding, leads to adult-like neural processing in the visual system,” which Ms. Harman-James says suggests that handwriting may have a particular role in setting children up for reading acquisition.
On January 23, 2012, researchers and education thought leaders convened in Washington D.C. for Handwriting in the 21st Century? An Educational Summit to discuss research and opinions regarding the role of handwriting instruction in the 21st century classroom. Now, just over a year later, a major shift in focus about the role this foundational skill should have in 21st century schools has occurred since the Summit.
It has long been a painful rite of passage for German schoolchildren – learning “die Schreibschrift”, a fiddly form of joined-up handwriting all pupils are expected to have mastered by the time they leave primary school.
But now, many German teachers have had enough, insisting it is a waste of time to force children to learn a cursive script when they have already learned to print letters at kindergarten. Furthermore, they say, the joined-up handwriting is often illegible.
Email, text and Twitter were said to be the final nails in its coffin. But as with Mark Twain – a great exponent of the art – reports of the death of letter writing have been greatly exaggerated. Increasingly, people are forgoing the gratification of instant electronic communication for a slower, more personal approach – letter writing is experiencing a revival, and the art of saying thank you is central to its resurgence.
Wohlgefühl: it’s one of those enigmatic words the German language excels in constructing. It can mean ‘wellbeing’ or ‘good feeling’, but it is the word Meike Wander, owner of Berlin’s RSVP stationery shop, uses to describe the timelessly simple delight of handwriting: of pen in hand, ink on paper and skin on surface as thoughts and images transfer from the imaginative to the material.
‘It’s a physical experience, it’s your body doing something,’ Wander says in her hesitant English. ‘Handwriting produces a good feeling – a wohlgefühl.’