FROM THE SIMPSON/HEMSTEAD SECRETARY OF EDUCATION
Okay, while I’m on a tear here, I’ve got another beef with your education policies, America. Surprise, surprise. I guess I shouldn’t have expected less from the country that last week allowed sexting and twitpics to count as “writing”, but the people at Vote Simpson/Hemstead occasionally gets a wild hair up their collective asses and decide to hold out hope, or hope for the best.
Well, not anymore America. I naively forgave you National Writing Day only to be stabbed in the back by the Common Core State Standard Initiative.
To give you some background on the enemy as taken from their website: The Common Core State Standards Initiative is “a state-led effort coordinated by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)”. 44 out of our 52 states have formally adopted the educational standards set out by this organization. Of course, there is always wiggle room for individualized state practices, but 84% of the powers at be in basic American elementary school + high school education have basically consented that “hey, these guys over here — I like their thinkin’”.
Now, where does Vote Simpson/Hemstead take offense? State coordination isn’t the issue. Having some universality in education standards is, you know, nice and prevents any one state from creating an army of angry adolescents creepily well versed in Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War”.
The issue at hand is that aforementioned standards omit the teaching of cursive entirely, but does include mention of keyboarding skills. And thus began the winter of our longhand discontent. Indiana and Illinois were the first to fall – removing teaching cursive in schools in its mandatory curriculum for the young ‘uns.
To that we say: JesuAllaFasa, America…really? No, seriously, Really? Sure – we’re in a digital age, but let’s not forget out roots. Interactivity with words is key in the learning process. The fine muscle control that is learned in cursive writing benefits children far beyond their composition books. There is an inherent value in how freaking hard cursive is to learn. Man that capital Q and Z were damn near impossible, but struggling with how to string letters together made you use your noodle more than scrawling whatever was easiest to get your point across.
Contrarily, punching keys to make words on a luminescent screen disassociates you from the words and letters you are writing and impedes memory retention (this is my way of saying you guys are lucky this makes a lick of sense you ignorant wretches).
To be clear, the message that the current government and the Common Core State Standards Initiative is putting out is that THIS is writing and should be applauded and heralded with it’s own day, but THIS is meaningless and should not be formally taught to our children.
For all our followers with little ones: teach your Twitted little booger munchers cursive yourself. Think of it as a post-apocalyptic survival mechanism. When the computers crash, you want to be apart of the select few cursive readers + writers – who can communicate where food and shelter is in code simply because the masses will have no clue what those weird loops and squiggles mean.
P.S. John Dillinger, while a notorious criminal, was taught cursive writing and was well-known for his gentlemanly nature and good manners.