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Handwriting and Memory . . . Taking Notes by Hand Increases Information Retention!

10/09/2013 Published by: Suzanne

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Categories: Your Child's Ages & Stages, Student 2 Student Programs Worldwide, Special Topics

For most students this school year has been in session long enough that tests have been taken or are on the horizon.  How have these students been preparing for their tests?  No doubt there are as many “methods” for test preparation as there are students, however, the National Math & Science Initiative (NMSI) recently blogged about the importance of writing things out by hand . . . something many see as a lost art!

In his blog entry, “Pencils and Brainwaves:  An Analysis on Handwriting and Memory”, Timothy Huneycutt cites several sources in order to make the following points:

  • Handwriting is still an invaluable skill
  • Research shows an important relationship between writing by hand and learning
  • Writing by hand results in increased brain activity – think boot camp for the brain!
  • Handwriting relaxes the emotional brain resulting in reduced student stress and improved learning
  • The skills of handwriting include:  memory, focus, prediction, attention, sequencing, estimation, patience and creativity

Mr. Huneycutt ventures on to say, “Research shows that you remember information better when you write it by hand than when you type it.”  We want our students to be at their best, able to understand and retain what was learned and then access that information when needed.  So, while districts and schools continue to integrate technology into their classrooms, some good old-fashioned paper and pencil are still vital to student learning and testing success!

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