Do you wish to learn how to write in cursive but are confused about where to start? Look no further because we have got you covered. In this article, we will discuss all the tips and tricks related to cursive writing. Read along as you are just a few steps away from learning how to write cursive.
Back in the 17th and 18th centuries, handwriting was a status symbol. People received penmanship training to preserve their elite status and Master Penmen were hired to copy official documents.
However, as time went by, the importance of penmanship continued to deteriorate. The emergence of solid metal Remington typewriters in the 1950’s and 60’s followed by the invention of bulky computers and laptops in the late 1980s changed the course of history.
Nowadays, every man on the planet is dependent on laptops and mobile phones for writing. It seems as if the art of penmanship is dying. However, some believe that penmanship is too important of a skill to die.
Efforts are being made by many to keep this art alive and these efforts, as of yet, have not gone in vain. People around the world are once again gravitating towards writing by hand. And among the many different writing styles, the timeless cursive writing has once again captivated the attention of writers worldwide.
This beautiful and elegant writing does indeed never go out of style. For this reason, we have devised a list of some of the most famous tips and techniques to help you learn how to write cursive in no time.
This easy to follow guide will help you master the skill by the time you’re done reading. So read along to become a skilled cursive writer.
What is cursive writing?
Cursive writing is a type of handwriting in which the letters are joined together in a continuous flow. In the past, it used to be a standard practice and was mandatory in schools. However, as time went by, the practice seems to have fallen out and is no longer compulsory in schools.
The cursive writing style is an alternative to block-letters in which the pen is supposed to lift between every letter. Sometimes it is also known as joined-up handwriting or script handwriting.
Cursive writing is a faster form of writing since you need to lift up your pen way less in comparison to other writing styles.
The word cursive comes from the past participle of a Latin word “currere” which means to run. In cursive writing, all the letters run into one another and the hand runs across the page. Every time a document asks for your signature, you are meant to use the flowing cursive style.
In this writing style, the shape of each letter is of vital importance and all the cursive letters have their own line upon which they are written. This has been by far the most commonly used writing style until the modern computer age.
The origins of cursive handwriting
Cursive handwriting, also sometimes known as script writing was first developed in the 17th century. This form of writing was considered to be the most appropriate for important documents and letters.
The origins of cursive writing are closely linked to the quill. Back when pens and pencils did not exist, quill was the most commonly used tool to write. Quills are fragile and very easily broken hence, the cursive writing was created to overcome the limitations of this writing tool.
Cursive writing allowed people to write for a sustained period of time without having to lift the quill from the page. This meant there was a much lesser chance of the quill breaking or spurting out ink.
Is cursive writing important?
There are many benefits of learning cursive writing. Previously, primary schools around the world made it necessary for students to perfect the art of cursive writing. This is because forming letters with the hand by using a pen or pencil is cognitively more effective when learning how to correctly form letters and words.
Learning to form letters by hand creates a connection between your motor and sensory nerves which is an essential part of all forms of learning. Here is a list of a few reasons why cursive writing is important especially for children:
Pros of cursive writing
Helps with letter mix-ups
For students who are in the first stage of learning letter formation, a few words such as p,q,b and d can be hard to understand. Usually these students end up writing these letters upside down or backwards. In short, it can be a little tricky for them to understand how to write them and takes quite a bit of time before they are able to write them correctly.
By encouraging students to join their letters, these mistakes can be reduced. Especially in the case of dyslexic students who are more prone to making these errors.
As this form of writing encourages a continuous writing flow, it helps increase concentration. Students are fixated on connecting letters properly,hence their attention is less likely to be diverted. In addition, reducing the amount of times they lift their pen from the page allows them to write more fluidly and helps them to express their ideas continuously.
One of the many reasons why one should learn cursive writing is because it is a much faster style of writing in comparison to others. This is why cursive writing was the prefered form of writing in the past.
It helps students get ready for their exams in the future. It teaches them how to write fast in order to complete the assigned task within the given time limit. Hence, it is an important form of writing.
Even for professionals, it is recommended that they learn this style of writing to get on with their documents faster.
It is a skill
All in all, cursive writing is a skill that will always benefit you in one way or the other. It gives the person an artistic touch and increases their creativity. Nowadays, this form of writing is being used by artists worldwide. It is used to make posters or write personal letters. In short, it embellishes every piece of paper.
Cons of cursive writing
Can be distracting
One of the biggest arguments against cursive writing is that it diverts the attention of students from other important school subjects and activities. Many parents believe that it is an extra unnecessary burden on their children which can be avoided. There’s also a speculation that affects the grades of core subjects like math and science
This skill is without a doubt time-consuming as it requires constant practice in the early stages of learning. In case, you do not practice, you can forget all the strokes in the blink of an eye and all that time spent can go into waste. Some believe it is not worth the time and effort you have to put into perfecting it.
The value of good penmanship is not even half of what it used to be. In times gone by, learning good penmanship was a vital part of children’s education. It would’ve been deemed unacceptable to have poor or ‘messy’ handwriting. However, nowadays, although it is still important for children’s handwriting to be legible, there is no longer great importance placed on how attractive it is.
How to write cursive
The cursive writing style may seem technical and tricky however, that is far from the truth. What the cursive style of writing demands the most is practice. Practice does indeed make you perfect and there is no better way to master this skill.
This part of the article will guide you on how to write in cursive using a few easy to follow tips and techniques.
What you will need:
Once you have gathered all the above mentioned materials, it is time to start practicing your strokes.
Warm up with basic strokes
Before we dive into cursive writing, lets first do a few warm up strokes
Start with printing out four to five practice sheets on blank A4 paper.
Now start by practicing the basic entrance and exit stroke for the first two lines just to warm up. The cursive script is about joint letters. Hence, to ensure easy connection between words, all lowercase letters have entrance and exit strokes.
Next, you should practice the upward stroke for the first two lines to warm up. This stroke may seem a bit new to you but with a good amount of practice, you shall be able to perfect it. You have to start just above the bottom line. Then you shoot your stroke up to the top line.
The fourth step is to practice the basic curve stroke for one or two lines. You may be required to curl up a bit more than before. Start a little under the dashed line, go up and around anticlockwise toward the bottom line and curve up, leaving a little gap.
Here are a few rules of cursive writing that you need to follow at all times:
- All the similar letters must be of the same height
- All small letters should start at the top
- Good handwriting in cursive style is identified from the patterns of parallel and oval lines
- Capital letters usually shouldn’t be any higher than the rest
- All down strokes of the letters should be parallel
How to write an upward stroke in lowercase alphabet
Now let’s take a look at the lowercase cursive script. It is almost identical to the cursive you learned in elementary school. Thus, it should not be too hard for you to follow.
We shall start by learning some cursive calligraphy letters. The letters f, b, j, u, l ,k ,n ,m ,p ,s ,r, u, v, w, x, y, and z all start with upward strokes. Some of these letters have strokes that fill up the entire height of the line. On the other hand, a few of these only reach the dashed line. Letters like f even reach below the bottom line of the page.
When you move towards practicing letters yourself, you need to sketch them out using your pencil first. Then you can easily follow the pencil lines you have made with your pen. This is especially helpful when learning the letter “k” in cursive.
The letter “u” is the easiest to start with. Start with placing your pen tip on the bottom line. From there, make an upward stroke to the dashed line. Then make a downward stroke that dips to the bottom line and swing back up again. Next, make another downward stroke and end just below the dashed line on the paper. And there you go, you have successfully written the letter u in cursive, that wasn’t too hard right?
Repeat the process of writing a letter “u” a few times so that you have a good grasp of it, this will help you in writing a few other letters as well. Many letters such as i, j, m, n, r, v, w and y are pretty similar to the letter “u ”. Once you have a good grip on the letter u, it should be easier to write the other letters in cursive.
Now let’s try writing a letter that is a bit harder such as the letter “h”. You have to start with the same process as the letter u but its stroke reaches all the way up to the top line. Then you have to arc to the left and make a downward stroke to the bottom line. You’ll cross over your previous line right near the bottom. Now arc up to the dashed line and make a downward stroke back down to the bottom line, curling up and ending just below the dashed line.
Repeat the process of writing the letter “h” a few times. It may take you some time before you are able to write the word correctly and without any help but you should get there. Many other alphabets such as b, f, k, and l are written in the same way.
Slowly make your way through the rest of the curved stroke lowercase letters, using the guide of the strokes as a reference.
How to write the curved stroke lowercase letters
We shall start by practicing some more lowercase cursive script alphabets. Note that the letters a, c, d, e, g, o and q all begin with an entrance stroke. This stroke starts at the bottom line and ends just below the dashed line. Once you have completed the entrance stroke, we then curve the stroke anticlockwise and then round.
You can always sketch out the letters using your pencil first until you properly learned how to make each stroke. Simply follow these lines with your pen. This way you will learn much faster and there will be lesser chances of making mistakes.
Let’s start with the letter “o” as it is the easiest. Start by placing your pen just above the bottom line. Arc up just below the dashed line and then curve round and anticlockwise to close the gap just below the dashed line. Next, come down slightly and flickout the ending on the dashed line. It is much easier than it sounds and can be learned within a matter of minutes.
The key here is to keep on practicing. Without sufficient practice, you are likely to forget the strokes and we do not want that. Practice each letter from time to time so that you can eventually move towards connecting two or more letters to form a word.
Repeat the process of making the letter “o” multiple times before you move on to other words. Once you have perfected this, it is much easier to see how the other downward curve letters are made.
Now let’s move towards a much harder letter: g. You need to start by making the same strokes you made for the letter o; however, instead of creating a circular shape, you need to go straight up and close the gap. Then you need to make a downward stroke and go past the bottom line. Next, curl to the left and make a diagonal upward stroke that continues up and ends just below the dashed line. The upward stroke should intersect the downward stroke of the letter g right at the bottom line.
Repeat the process of writing the letter “g” a few times. Then slowly move through the rest of the curved stroke lowercase letters, using the guide of the strokes as a reference.
How to write the cursive script uppercase alphabet
The uppercase cursive writing style requires you to follow different rules and is usually a bit more elaborate. In this case, the curved strokes are relatively bigger and the upward strokes have more slants and curls in them. Other than that, the uppercase letters are just as simple to write as lowercase letters. As always, what you need is lots of practice.
It is suggested that you start with the easiest letter and then move towards the harder ones. So let’s start with the letter “L”. Place the tip of your pen just below the top line. The arc goes down just above the dashed line and around in an anticlockwise motion and comes up to the top line.
Next, arc over to the left and make a downward stroke to the bottom line. Your line should now be slanting towards the right.Once you reach the bottom line, you have to curl up and around. Lastly, sweep your line out to the right to make a nice gentle curve. Remember it’s all about the curls and slants. The bigger, the better.
Repeat the process of writing the letter “L” a few times until you perfect it. Don’t shy away from making big curls and sweeping lines, this shall help your writing stand out. Once you know how to write the letter “L” it will be much easier to write a few other uppercase letters such as E, C, G, O AND Q. The more you practice the better.
Let’s move toward a harder letter such as “R”. Keep the tip of your pen on the top line. From there make a downward stroke to the bottom nicely while arching slightly towards the left and end with a fancy curl. Next, lift your pen and place it on the dashed line. You are supposed to make a curved stroke upwards and make a clockwise motion towards the top line.
Now curve down to the dashed line again and go up and over ever so slightly until you end up creating a loop. Make another curved stroke out to the right and down to the bottom line and again make a fancy curl. This may seem tricky at first, but should be easy once you get a hang of it.
Repeat the process of making the letter “R” a few times till you do it right. Don’t rush the process, start by making slow strokes and then you can later make faster strokes. Writing the letter “R” is pretty similar to letters such as B, D, F, I, J, P, and T. So start by perfecting the letter R.
In a similar way, practice writing uppercase letters in the cursive style of writing. This may take some time but you shall get the hang of it. Trace the letters, this is the best way to learn and is much faster.
Cursive writing is a good skill and in many ways a form of art. Hence, if you have enough time to spare, definity give it a go. It may take some time to perfect all letters but you’ll be pleased once you have a good hang of it.