Lesson #112: Can Handwriting Actually Help You with Your English?

Recently, I listened to a thought-provoking podcast featuring Italian educator Lucrezia Oddone, where she discussed the importance of HANDWRITING texts that you would like to memorise.

She says that when you write a text by hand, you are fully present and paying attention to every word you write. Compared to typing alone, handwriting is a coordinated activity that deeply stimulates the brain.

This is encouraging to me because I have actually been keeping notebooks for a few years filled with passages of texts or entire poems that I would like to memorise. 

Many years ago, I heard that one of the best ways to improve your writing is to READ and MEMORISE lots of poetry.

Well, this has not been difficult advice for me to follow, since I have always loved poetry!

I am sharing a photo of some of my homely copies of Emily Bronte’s ‘Plead for Me’ and Robert Frost’s ‘Design’ – both of which are short, pithy poems.

✍️ Do you like to write by hand? Have you ever considered using this technique to memorise more, whether English texts or texts in your mother tongue that are important to you? I would very much like to hear about your own experiences with pen and paper; you are welcome to share them with me if you like.

by J. E. Gibbons

English language tutor and researcher at 'Learn English Through Literature' (2024)