Thursday, September 25, 2014

Handwriting issues- more Aspies have it than not

HEY YOU - yes I am talking to you.

My kid's handwriting sucks. REALLY BAD.
He will type, dictate, or try to write and then ask to dictate to one of us. This is serious business. As time goes by there supposedly is NO excuse for god-awful handwriting. At least that is what we are told now after hearing that kids don't need to write or be able to write clearly and legibly.

I do not concur.

During the time that MOST gen kids are doing their handwriting bit- since 2013 articles indicate that even cursive is not being taught but the focus on teaching to the testing is more prevalent. SERIOUSLY? So most of these kids do not learn penmanship in school any longer. My God no wonder none of us can read a blooming thing one of these kids have written.

Most teachers will not accept work that is dictated. Did you know that?
OK so if we are NOT teaching handwriting in schools - my son did not learn penmanship and at home during that time I was trying to work on reading, and taking him to museums, zoos and the like so he could be good at something. I did NOT focus on penmanship at home I mistakenly thought that was taught at school.

SO now what do we do. Well, we are encouraging the boy to dictate - there are things that use the spoken word to type out what he needs on the computer. WE also are having him practice his keyboarding. Although proper finger location is not taught at school either. I think my old typing teacher would be appalled. I am attempting to teach him the key thing that I learned but it is pretty slow going. Honestly I did NOT get good at typing until after I went back to work. I do not know what my WPM is but I know that I can go pretty quickly when I need to.

And yes I TYPE a lot. I can think and type pretty much at the same time. BUT I have had practice, and I CAN STILL PRINT AND USE CURSIVE. The other night I had writers cramp. How often does that happen any more? We get tendinitis from typing or using the mouse- writers cramp is one of those odd things that used to come up years ago....
I guess the thing is that really taking more "teaching to the testing" whether anyone will admit it or not - taking handwriting out is such a little thing....that in the long term means a lot.

My Mom will still prefer a pretty written note to some typewritten old thing. She enjoys the fun of getting the mail and having something coming to her.
Using email to communicate is fine. I do it.  Same with FB and all the other online things available.
BUT the actual written word may be going out as much as we all think. And more's the pity I say- because although my handwriting is loops and curls and all that - I still believe that writing things down is important.

 So although some people will not be teaching their kids cursive and some will I am still not sure what we will do. I would like to teach my Aspie cursive. and hopefully he will understand why it is so important.and maybe just maybe someone will take a gander at the "Common Core" and realize that focusing on just that is going to loose us all (gen and Aspie) in the long run....taking out the things that make people well, cultured, is really cutting a generation of students to the absolute bare minimum of learning. The Common Core doesn't make everyone learn the same. It appears to make everyone drones and not thinking for themselves or outside their boxes.

Think about it. There is little art and music taught unless you as a student are focusing on Art or Music. My band director from HS taught me to learn the different instrument playing in a symphony. He did - and although I am not the most musically inclined person I will admit that doing that helped me to learn to appreciate the symphony (and gave me something to do in case it got boring).My first real art class was in college - the professor liked how I saw things and put up with me in his art room. He allowed me to paint, and see things the way I did and I was lucky to get so much out of it. I will never be a Rembrandt or Picasso but him teaching me "Less is MORE" is something that I  have applied to my entire life.

Any more a student practically has to be a rare talent in elementary school- there are Aspies who are GOOD at art. they can draw, paint, use pencil or whatever. These things are taught to them at home and then expounded upon at school. As for me; I didn't focus on that part. My son had a natural ability towards history and reading - so we are now working on the things we missed (art, music and penmanship) when we were trying to teach him to talk at age 5 (normally verbal starts at (1-3 years old).

Looks like I have my work cut out for me......

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