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Developing efficiency in cursive handwriting: An analysis of 't' crossing behaviour in children.
Sassoon, R., Nimmo-Smith, I. & Wing, A.M.
In R. Plamondon, C.Y. Suen & M.L. Simner (Eds.), Computer Recognition and Human Production of Handwriting (pp.287-297). Singapore: World Scientific Publishing.
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In English schools children are taught to join the letter [t] to the following letter by linking up from the curved base and returning later to add the crossbar. A study of 4 groups of 100 children in age groups ranging from 7 up to 16 years reveals a progressive departure from this method of joining in favour of joining with the crossbar. It is argued that this change to use of the crossbar represents a search for efficiency in the natural evolution of handwriting into an individual style. This inference is supported by the observation that, when asked to write as fast as possible, frequency of use of the crossbar join increases further. It is suggested that handwriting instruction should be sensitive to such natural evolutionary trends in letter formation.