This is the fourth article in the series, "Empowering Writers with Dyslexia." If you missed the first one, you can read it here: Empowering Writers with Dyslexia.
After students have been adequately prepared, learning is cemented with the kinesthetic act using the keyboard or cursive handwriting to write independently.
Although it is quickly becoming obsolete, cursive handwriting is extremely helpful to the learner with dyslexia and much easier for them than printing.
The unbroken flow of cursive provides better encoding of spelling into the powerful motor memory and fewer opportunities to get confused with directionality. After all, b/d and u/n reversals are impossible with cursive. All lower case cursive letters all start at the same place on the baseline, whereas print letters begin in multiple places, offering more opportunities for reversals or other errors. Additionally, words written in cursive become a single unit, rather than a collection of disconnected strokes, helping to ensure that proper spelling is aided with muscle memory.
Printed letters were designed for easy creation by a printing press, while cursive was designed for the human hand. It’s no wonder cursive is so much easier and less error-prone for students who’ve learned to use it!
If your students with dyslexia have not been taught cursive, it is essential that they are allowed to compose on a keyboard. Similarly to cursive, touch typing can help students avoid reversals or other errors by engaging muscle memory.