Thursday, January 05, 2017  09:42 AM | By: Matt Dow
Typing & Handwriting: Friends or Foes?

Why Would We Still Need to know Handwriting?

Over the past couple of years, elementary schools in various states removed cursive handwriting from their curriculums. In large part, this was due to the decreased need for handwriting in our day-to-day lives. Technology has taken over the classroom, and typing is the new written word. However, typing and handwriting still seem to co-exist, so are typing and handwriting friends or foes?

Why are Handwriting & Typing Foes?

Man Types On Keyboard

Handwriting has been in decline for decades. With advancements in technology, new forms of communication became more convenient, and typing slowly became a more necessary skill than it ever was before. In the business world, this change has been happening for some time. Since typewriters were used in businesses for well over a century, it seemed natural that computers would enable typing to gradually take over the day-to-day operations of many companies and organizations.

A Shift Away From the Written Word

Man Looks At Phone

Next, as email became more widely available to the general public, snail mail and other handwritten forms of communication decreased dramatically. Later on, our cell phones became a new tool for communication, and suddenly, we were able to send short text messages to nearly anyone anywhere in the world, which caused an even further decline in the need for handwriting and written mail. Technology has taken a strong hold. We send texts in place of sticky notes, or set reminders on our phones instead of jotting them into our desk calendars. Because electronic communication has woven its way through nearly every aspect of our lives, typing is often deemed a more important skill than handwriting and has become a part of the curriculum at most schools across the United States.

Why are Handwriting & Typing Friends?

Man Writes With Pen

Since typing has replaced handwriting in so many areas, it is easy to say that typing and handwriting are foes, but that is not necessarily the case. Handwriting is not just a motor skill. The motor process of forming letters just may be connected to the cognitive processes of reading, and studies have indicated that those who are unable to write are often unable to respond to letters in the same way others do. Typing won’t do us any good if we can’t read what we’ve typed, so there is still a need for handwriting. Until we adapt to a new way of learning, handwriting will never be extinct.

We also still use signatures to sign contracts and perform other daily tasks. In addition, typing on computers and cell phones requires power, so there will always be a need to keep handwriting as a backup plan. And, let’s face it. Thanks to the typing takeover, we all appreciate a handwritten thank you note more than we ever do an E-Card, so while technological innovation continues to trend upwards and, in the future, we may see even fewer reasons to put pen to paper, that doesn’t mean that the need for handwriting will ever go away. There will always be a reason for typing and handwriting to be both friends and foes.


Looking for a reason to write or type? Check out our blog how you can start getting involved with a pen pal program.

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