The world on paper

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David R. Olson is University Professor Emeritus of cognitive sciences at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (University of Toronto). His book The World on Paper is an essential read for anyone interested in literacy. Continue reading

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Making handwriting sense

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Letters not only make visual sense. Letters make handwriting sense. Visual sense is a consequence, an effect of the rational, logical and systematic use of tools, materials and methods. The particulars, though, are embodied and can’t be explained with words, they need to be experienced. Continue reading

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Cataneo’s italic copybook

Bernardino Cataneo was a writing master at the University of Siena around 1544-1560. The only known surviving exemplars of his writing are the pages in this copybook, dated 4 February 1545. Continue reading

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Knowledge and experience, hand in hand

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David Kindersley, British stone carver and letter designer wrote ‘Knowledge and experience must go hand in hand if any understanding is to be achieved.’ Continue reading

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Optimal letter perception

 

optimalperceptionofleterscoverLately I’ve been trying to present some of the ideas expressed in this blog in graphics. This is one example that shows how the different senses influence each other. It shows the potential of writing Regular script and how writing the same script that we read will help us to read better. Continue reading

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Handwriting and visual perception

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‘Ordinary copybooks seem to have followed a highly doubtful tradition of engraver’s letters — which cannot really be copied in writing, even by an adult pen’ wrote Edward Johnston some 100 years ago.

Looking at contemporary copy books or ‘writing work books’ as they now like to call them, little has changed. Continue reading

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Walking before running

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To think of teaching children regular handwriting before any cursive or running script is introduced appears commonsensical. But implementing such an idea in the Western education system is difficult. Continue reading

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