A cornerstone of the Montessori approach to handwriting is that cursive is the preferred style. The following article, and the information that it contains, is worthy of our attention, particularly in light of the fact that just as you have now become aware of it, so will parents and others with whom you might come into contact:
A variety of studies are cited in the article, including one in which 45 Canadian teachers were interviewed, revealing that most had only a "sketchy knowledge at best" about what the research showed.
And I don't think for a moment that these results would be restricted to Canadian teachers! I believe that were the study to be repeated in Australia, or in the USA, or anywhere else for that matter, the results would be the same.
How much do YOU know about research into handwriting, cursive and print styles, etc.?
And you are correct if you're asking: How much did yours truly know about this research?!?!
(... I refuse to answer on the grounds that you'll find out that my knowledge was "pretty sketchy", to quote the study cited!)
Another item of interest was the finding of another study that the most efficient style of handwriting was an individually created composite of cursive and manuscript styles. Well that was unexpected! (It does match our "individualized" approach to learning though, I thought to myself ...)
There will be more on Handwriting in future blogs, and a publication on an approach to Handwriting in a Montessori prepared environment is also in the works. For now, I think it's important for us as Montessori professionals to make sure that we are as informed as is possible about research into handwriting, and into cursive, so that we can stand on firm ground whenever we are asked to discuss this aspect of our work.
© Greg MacDonald 2019