In 2010, the education initiative known as Common Core State Standards dropped cursive writing as a requirement for students. Which is unfortunate, some say, because without a working knowledge of cursive, reading historical papers, old letters, and documents could grow out of reach.

Can you imagine not knowing how to read something written in your own language?

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How did this happen? Well, technology is so prevalent in our lives that knowing how to communicate with a keyboard was determined to be more important than writing loopy letters linked together with ink.

But lately there’s been movement toward bringing the art of cursive back. Turns out, there are many benefits to knowing how to write in cursive, even beyond the ability to read great-grandpa’s letters to great-grandma while he was stationed overseas during WWII.

Here are 5 fantastic reasons knowing how to write in cursive is good for your brain and your soul.

1. Improved neural connections

Writing in cursive stimulates the brain in ways that keyboarding can’t. The parts of the brain that control thinking, memory and language are stimulated with movement of the fingers while forming letters.

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2. Cursive reinforces flowing thought

Children who learn cursive score higher in spelling and reading because entire words are reinforced as they are written. The brain does not learn as efficiently when typing a word one letter at a time.

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3. Cursive is faster than printing

Along with continuity and flow, the uninterrupted ability to write rather than pecking away on a keyboard promotes memory and learning. Faster writing means more writing–and reading.

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4. Cursive improves fine motor skills

Writing in cursive is sensory forming and helps with other everyday activities like buttoning and picking up objects.

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5. The ability to have a unique signature

Children who learn cursive can create their own signature that flows in an artistic form.

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While keyboarding is obviously important, learning anything as complex as cursive is good for your brain and your self-esteem. Plus, cursive writing is artistic and expressive.

Luckily, cursive isn’t dead in the water quite yet–old-fashioned pen and paper may end up back to the classroom where it belongs.

Fingers crossed…