At a Loss for Words…
Learning how to write is just as essential a tool to success as learning to talk and learning to read.
One might say this statement is biased because I’m a lover and student of writing. But I honestly believe that effective writing, and the understanding of how important written communication is, is a vital key to empowerment, professionalism, and intellect. Studies show that people who consider themselves good writers have a considerable amount of more self-esteem than those who wish they were better at writing. Good writers have the ability to organize, revise, influence, express, educate, and perhaps entertain. My point is: writing is important!
Or at least, it used to be…
When was the last time you wrote something significant? How often do we find ourselves writing these days? With all this technology — like Facebook, Twitter, text messaging, and more — people very rarely write or type letters to each other like they used to. Statuses, tweets, and cell phones have taken writing away from today’s students no matter how much grade school teachers teach writing in school.
I remember when I was younger, growing up in the 90s, my friends and I wrote letters and notes almost daily to each other in class and in between class, we exchanged love letters with boyfriends, and we often wrote to family and friends and pen pals. But today, all it takes is a quick status update to tell every single one of your friends how your day went. All it takes is a mass text forward to wish people a merry Christmas. We don’t need birthday cards or stamps anymore. It’s so sad.
The convenience of communicating electronically has stolen the passion of writing from our children, and ourselves. Writing gives people the ability to solve problems and express themselves, to document their lives and their feelings. It helps us practice our communication skills on paper (or Microsoft Word). Writing is the foundation of history; stories, documents, and diary entries of explorers, victims, and politicians from the beginning of time all over the world paint the perfect picture for us today. What will our children and our children’s children be able to refer to when we’re dead and gone? Even photo albums are nearly extinct and exist primarily on Facebook.
As lovers and teachers of writing, we really have to hold on to our understanding and compassion for writing. Because today’s world is just at a loss for words.