Children should continue to learn cursive*

The President of the German Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education (“Kultusministerkonferenz”, KMK), Dr Susanne Eisenmann, MD, has received a petition to rescue the cursive. This was announced by the Deutsche Sprachwelt (DSW) on 3 November 2017. Over 17,200 citizens sign with their signatures on the KMK, to ensure that primary schools continue to teach the children the cursive. Language conservationists have now handed over to Dr Eisenmann, MD, who is also Baden-Wuerttemberg’s Minister of Culture, seven large folders filled with petition lists.

[Translate to en:] Aktion «Rettet die Schreibschrift»: Wolfgang Hildebrandt (Aktion Deutsche Sprache, links), Thomas Paulwitz (Deutsche Sprachwelt) und Prof. Dr. Uta Seewald-Heeg (Neue Fruchtbringende Gesellschaft, rechts) übergeben Kultusministerin Dr. Susanne Eisenmann die Unterschriften. (Bild dsw)

ion to ban the abolition of joint writing tuition in her state. Due to the great popularity that the advocates of the joint writing during the collection of the signatures were allowed to learn, they are sure: “The mood in the population is clear: The cursive writing must remain. If children are able to write fluently and relaxed, they have an excellent tool for acquiring education and knowledge. They recognise spelling mistakes more quickly and thus learn to avoid them.”
The magazine Deutsche Sprachwelt (DSW) from Erlangen, the Aktion Deutsche Sprache (ADS) from Hanover, and the Neue Fruchtbringende Gesellschaft (NFG) from Köthen (Anhalt, Sxony-Anhalt) had collectively collected the signatures. Just a few years ago, they had already handed over a first, smaller amount with some 2,100 signatures to the former KMK President Bernd Althusmann in Hanover. The second delivery now followed in Stuttgart, with more than 15,100 signatures.
DSW editor-in-Chief Thomas Paulwitz, ADS chairman Wolfgang Hildebrandt and NFG chair Prof Dr Uta Seewald-Heeg thanked the Minister of Culture for her efforts to rescue the connected handwriting. Their gratitude was connected with the wish that Dr Eisenmann in the KMK would take a stand for the reintroduction of handwriting tuition in all federal states. “We do not need less, but more handwriting,” Paulwitz explained. Many of the advantages of connected writing – promoting fine motor skills, thinking and learning – are not only obvious, but also scientifically proven. Children should not be educated to become “writing-stutterers” by being deprived of arbitrarily appropriating a cultural asset.
In addition to Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Saxony and, most recently, Schleswig-Holstein have given up the idea of replacing cursive writing with the so-called basic typeface – blockletters with little hooks that leaves it up to the pupils how they connect the letters – with correspondingly devastating results. The next goal of the action “Save the Script” (“Rettet die Schreibschrift”) is now that even federal states, known as writing-indolent, such as Thuringia, North Rhine-Westphalia, Hamburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania are again ready to give more weight to handwriting lessons at elementary level.    •

Source: www.deutsche-sprachwelt.de of 3 November 2017

*    “Cursive”, also known as “longhand”, “script”, “joined-up writing”, “joint writing”, “running writing”, or “handwriting” is any style of penmanship in which the symbols of the language are written in a conjoined and/or “flowing” manner, generally for the purpose of making writing faster. Formal cursive is generally joined, but casual cursive is a combination of joins and pen lifts. The writing style can be further divided as “looped”, “italic”, or “connected”. (Wikipedia)