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Handwriting News!

Our ability to express ourselves is so important and there are lots of ways to do it. One of the most common is through writing. Although technology has made us write less, it's not for everyone and every situation. So, in honor of National Handwriting Day on January 23, I thought I'd share some handwriting news.

Writing lies at the root of our civilization; it is the accumulated memory of mankind.” 

- Writing: The Story of Alphabets and Scripts by Georges Jean

Writing Trivia

One of the following statements is false. Can you guess?

  1. U.S. Senators have a habit of carving or writing their names in the drawer of the desk that they inhabit for their term in the Senate. 

  2. Before the invention of the common eraser, breadcrumbs were once used to erase pencil marks. 

  3. A typical pencil can draw a line 35 miles long or write about 45,000 words. 

  4. Letters written to convey pity or sorrow are said to be written with sympathetic ink

  5. Linguists have documented some 3,000 different languages in use throughout the world. Only about a hundred of them are ordinarily written down. 

See answer at bottom of this post =)


Cursive writing instruction has been making a comeback. It is now a required part of the public school curriculum in 28 states. 5 additional states have legislation pending. Write On!

“Handwriting is... an inspiring symbol of the unique power of the human voice.” 

- August 23, 2019 article “Why cursive handwriting needs to make a school comeback”

by Hetty Roessingh in The Conversation

Exercise for the Brain

Learning to write by hand involves much more than memory and muscle movement. It begins with a thought of putting pen to paper. Your brain then sends instructions through nerve impulses down your arm to your fingers where you begin to form letters that join to form words. Meanwhile, your mind is rapidly selecting which word to write, out of many possibilities, while remembering...

Read the rest of this short article here.

Importance of Learning to Write by Hand

  • Creates a foundation for communication in general

  • Proficiency can lead to increased confidence, expression, and comprehension

  • Encourages the development of impulse control

  • Results in a script that is unique to the individual

Handwriting is a basic communication skill that can be expressed any time, any where. All you need is a surface and an instrument to make a mark on that surface. Just as fast food restaurants have not stopped us from the joy of preparing fresh meals and cars have not prevented us from the delightful experience of walking, the use of computers does not replace the benefits of learning and writing by hand. The practice of penmanship creates a script that is unique to the individual...

Read the rest of this article here.

Science and Write On!

Did you know that the study of handwriting is represented in these fields?

  • Questioned Documents (authentication)

  • Paleography (ancient writing)

  • Graphology (character and personality)

This link offers a few samples of the more than 300 articles I've published on handwriting analysis through my columns Write On! and Handwriting@Work. "Looking into your I’s” is a response to a letter in which the writer wonders about her different styles of writing. I noticed her different forms of the capital letter/personal pronoun I. Here's an excerpt:

"The personal pronoun I is the one letter that refers specifically to the person who uses it and should stand out from the crowd, or in this case, the other letters. It should rise above the rest as you refer to yourself and no one else. Just think, there has never been anyone exactly like you nor will there ever be again. You are unique! While the small capital I’s reveal your tendency to think less of yourself, the variety of I’s suggest a time of experimentation..."

What does it all mean? Check out this short article here!

Writing Trivia Answer

Out of the five statements, #4 was false.

Sympathetic ink - more commonly known as invisible ink - is a term used for ink that is colorless and invisible until treated by a chemical, heat, or special light.

Write On!

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