National Handwriting Day:
Celebrated on January 23rd, the National Handwriting Day encourages the art of penmanship.
|2022||23rd January||Sunday||United States|
|2023||23rd January||Monday||United States|
|2024||23rd January||Tuesday||United States|
Why National Handwriting Day?
the National Handwriting Day encourages the art of penmanship that has been taking a toll since the arrival of the typewriters and the QWERTY keyboard. With students preferring the fast and efficient methods of note-making and the lack of emphasis on handwriting lessons in schools, penmanship is en route to being an endangered art form. Read on further to know why handwriting is more than just a style of writing.
Handwriting is the act of writing with instruments such as a pen or a pencil. The pen and pencil substituted the carvers and stones that were used to make an impression on scrolls and tablets in the earlier days. The Romans developed a written script for correspondence, gaining inspiration from the Etruscan alphabet.
By the 5th century, the written script had evolved into a form that resembles modern handwriting. After the fall of the Roman empire, the development and technique of handwriting had been furthered by institutions such as the Christian monasteries. The Christian monasteries continued to spawn out numerous classical texts throughout Europe.
Handwriting continued to develop unsystematically, varying from region to region up until the 8th century. Charlemagne, the emperor who has been credited for uniting Western Europe after the fall of the Roman empire, commissioned an English monk to standardize the handwritten script. This script came to be known as the Carolingian minuscule. This script contained lower case letters, punctuations and could be effortlessly read, even under candlelight.
Until the 15th century, the Carolingian Miniscule was popular. However, in the 15th century, the denser, Gothic script gained upper hand as it was widely used for printed parchments, books, and even in the printing press of Johannes Gutenberg. The Carolingian script was brought back by the Italian humanists. They invented the Italic font from the same script. Penmanship became a scholarly matter around the 18th century and schools taught the students the nuances of the art of handwriting.
Platt Rogers Spencer developed a cursive writing system that was adopted by the schools in the 19th century. Later this system was substituted with the Palmer method developed by Austin Norman Palmer. Finally, the D’Nealian script created by Donal Thurber came into practice. This system was adopted by the American schools in the late 1970s.
In the 1980s, typewriters and word processors began to replace pen and paper and as a result, the handwriting courses in schools were eliminated. Fast forward to the 21st century, the availability of laptops, tabs, and mobile phones have negated the use of good old pen and paper. Maybe the last time you touched a pen was in elementary school. In a few years, the art of handwriting might become extinct and a handwritten letter or document may even seem like a foreign language.
The deterioration of handwriting skills seems to be a problem in the Western world. The handwriting classes that focus on pen grip, letter formation, and good handwriting are being replaced by keyboard skill development sessions. Whereas Eastern education still considers handwriting as a valuable academic and practical skill. Perhaps the only reason why writing exists in many schools could be the numerous benefits it offers to the growing children.
Handwriting has often been associated with cognitive and motor skill development. Handwriting exercises involve tactile and complex sensory stimulation that activates brain function. Whereas typing only involves a memory-based repetitive movement. Scientific evidence claims that strong writing skills are linked to better comprehension. If you had to spend long hours on copywriting assignments and worksheets in your childhood, rest assured that the lessons have contributed towards your comprehension skills, problem-solving skills, and creativity.
Just like a thumbprint every individual has unique handwriting. The field of Graphology explores the possibilities of how handwriting is linked to different personalities. Historians and forensic professionals use handwriting to authenticate documents cross-checking with the writer’s handwriting or writing style. Even the plays written by William Shakespeare have been scrutinized by the writing experts to prove their veracity.
While opponents of handwriting instruction claim that the activity has lost its relevance in comparison to the sought after digital proficiency, no one can deny the warm and fuzzy feeling generated by a handwritten letter or card. The pen and paper have together created history and Gandhi once said, bad handwriting is a reflection of an imperfect education. With all the advantages that good handwriting ushers in, it can be said that the pen surely triumphs the keyboard.
How Can We Observe National Handwriting Day?
- Get The Loops And Curves Right
Improve your handwriting skills by practicing cursive writing.
- Good Handwriting For The Soul
Send a beautiful handwritten card or letter to your loved ones. You can also develop a daily habit of writing to improve your handwriting by starting a journal.
- The Paradoxical Celebration
Share the photos and handwritten posts of your National Handwriting Day on social media using #NationalHandwritingDay and #HandwritingDay
Interesting Facts On National Handwriting Day:
Few Facts Related to National Handwriting Day
- According to a study conducted on children in second and fifth grade in 2006, it was found that children produced more words faster and expressed more ideas while writing compared to typing on a keyboard. The research findings showed that the benefits of handwriting continued up to adulthood.
- Handwriting can also serve as an indicator in case of diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and ADHD.
-When the writing goes from light to dark it is indicative of high blood pressure. It can also indicate the energy levels of the writer.
Changing handwriting, irregular letters indicative of trembling can be signs of Alzheimer’s.
-If the slant of the handwriting changes within the same sentence or word, it might be indicative of schizophrenia as the person loses track of reality.
-Micrographic or crammed writing with extremely small letters that even the writer cannot read are signs of Parkinson’s disease.
- A change in handwriting is characteristic of an intoxicated or nervous writer.
- Dysgraphia is defined as incompetence in producing legible and coherent writing.
- Writing down notes is more effective when it comes to the retention of information.
- Cursive writing has been proved useful in cases of dyslexia by facilitating a stronger association for learning and committing to memory.
- Writing sentences like “I will be calm” repeatedly has a soothing effect.
- Graphologists assess handwriting to find clues regarding emotional stability, mood, motivation, aggression, and intelligence.
- Graphology takes into consideration many factors such as the size of the letters, the shape, placement, pressure, slant, and even the size of the loops in hand.
History of National Handwriting Day:
The National Handwriting Day is observed on 23rd January in memory of John Hancock, who was the first person to sign the declaration of independence. John Hammock was an eminent merchant and the third governor of Massachusetts
The day was first introduced in 1977 by the Writing Instrument Manufacturers Association( WIMA) as a measure to combat the waning use of pen and paper in modern-day society and the lack of emphasis and importance given to an indispensable skill like handwriting.