Handwriting’s Important Role In Letter Recognition

Perceptual and motor systems become linked only when individuals learn through self-generated actions. This explains why one doesn’t obtain a driver’s license by passing the written examination alone. In order to pass the driver’s test, students must first practice the act of driving. Simply knowing the rules of the road won’t cut it. We learn by doing.


With this in mind, it has been proven that when it comes to identifying letters, children have better recall if they have self-produced the letters before - i.e. have handwriting experience. A study examined 6-year-old children learning cursive—either through self-production or through observing someone else write. The brain imaging results indicated that only when the letters were self-produced did seeing the letters recruit the perceptual-motor network.


As humans become increasingly reliant on technology, some people are even beginning to wonder whether one day handwriting will be a thing of the past. For the sake of letter recognition, the foundation of literacy, Write Right is dedicated to making sure that doesn’t happen — all the while embracing the rapidly evolving technology in schools.


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Reference: James, K. H. (2017). The Importance of Handwriting Experience on the Development of the Literate Brain. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 26(6), 502-508.