Radio Sandwell Miscellanea

Written out: Typing displaces writing in Finnish schools

2014-11-22 00:09:22

Finnish students will no longer be taught handwriting at school, with typing lessons taking its place, it's reported.

Learning joined-up writing, often in fountain pen in the UK, is almost a rite of passage for primary school students. But Finland is moving into the digital age by ditching the ink in favour of keyboards, the Savon Sanomat newspaper reports. From autumn 2016, students won't have to learn cursive handwriting or calligraphy, but will instead be taught typing skills, the report says. "Fluent typing skills are an important national competence," says Minna Harmanen from the National Board of Education. The switch will be a major cultural change, Ms Harmanen says, but typing is more relevant to everyday life.

There are some concerns that the move could disadvantage children who don't have a computer at home, or schools where there aren't enough computers to go around. But many people have welcomed the move. "For most teachers it's sufficient that upper case and lower case letters can be distinguished," says Susanna Huhta, deputy chairwoman of the Association of Native Language Teachers. However, she points out that handwriting helps children to develop fine motor skills and brain function, and suggests handwriting classes could be replaced by handicrafts and drawing. Social media users also see the positives, with one user on the Etela-Saimaa website saying: "Handwriting is a totally useless skill. Maybe not as useless as compulsory Swedish, but coming pretty close to it."

Source: bbc.co.uk

Share this story

Related Stories

Miscellanea around the web

UFO SHOCK: 'Truth' about 'shape-shifting alien UFO' over Chile snapped by newspaper editor

Asteroid warning: Nasa discovers space rock as big as a HOUSE to skim Earth within DAYS

Rendlesham UFO shock theory: Colonel says US airmen COULD have been abducted by aliens

Life on Mars theory intensifies as 'aliens spotted by ruins in Nasa image'

Drunk droning now illegal in New Jersey

Man's throat ruptured by 'forceful sneeze'

M&S axes 'cauliflower steak' after criticism

Thai PM to reporters: 'Ask my cardboard cut-out'

Endangered stick insects breed at Bristol Zoo

Village encourages children to smoke for festival

Image Slider