Most recently James Tanner wrote at Genealogy’s Star about this subject as well. While his post covered several subjects pertinent to the education of future researchers, his comment about his grandson not being able to read cursive struck home. Just a few months ago I taught my middle school son how to sign his name. He didn’t know how. I know that they started to teach cursive in 2nd grade at his school, but it seems that it is not a requirement to actually do it anymore. All of his work is printed or typed, no cursive to be seen.
If you had asked me a year ago if thought this could happen in our future I think I would have been hard pressed not to laugh. Cursive, go out of favor, are you kidding me? However, as I have read article, after article, after article addressing this concern, I started to look around me. Even my home state isn’t requiring teaching of cursive writing anymore!
I think I am the only one in my house who still writes in cursive. My boys both print, and so does my husband when he isn’t typing. However, in his defense, he is a lefty with atrocious handwriting; I may be the only one on the planet that read it. Most of my friends print, even my sons teachers for the most print all their notes home when they aren’t typed.
What are your thoughts? Is this a dying art from like gothic lettering? Do see a college class for historians in 50 years on reading cursive handwriting? Or… am I overreacting?
*Image from wikipedia