Recent IELTS Essay: Handwriting Skills for Children

Below is a recently reported essay question with some useful ideas. Read through the ideas and learn any new vocabulary.

Some people think that it is important to teach children the skill of handwriting.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Reasons in Support of Children Learning Handwriting Skills

  • handwriting is a basic tool in many subjects, for example doing tests, taking notes and writing homework.
    • poor handwriting skills or illegible writing can have negative effects on school performance
  • learning handwriting is linked to learning to spell, basic reading and grammar
    • these are basic and fundamental requirements for any school child
  • good handwriting skills should be taught at an early age to form good habits as it is essential later in life
    • in some situations it is better to write by hand rather than type
  • there is a link between cognition and writing by hand
    • children learn better when they are forced to write something by hand

Other Ideas

  •  teaching children how to touch-type would be more useful
    • being proficient in the use of modern technological devices by touch typing is essential for the future
  • focusing on handwriting which is less relevant today, is a waste of time for children
    • time could be better spent on developing other useful skills and knowledge
  • handwriting is linked to learning to spell but spell check is a function that all computers have
    • therefore less time should be spent focusing on this


  1. Can we use “Kith and Kin” instead of friends and relatives in writing essay 2 ?

    • No. This is a formal essay about you should stick with appropriate language. Your aim is not to be creative or descriptive. Your aim should be to avoid errors.

  2. Hi Liz,
    Thank you for all the splendid work you’re doing. This is my problem, I write really slow, and even after practising there seems to be no improvement. It’s seriously affecting performance in Writing. Please, do you have any tip for solving this issue?

    • If your typing skills are good, you could consider taking the Computer Delivered IELTS test. Otherwise, you will just have to keep practising. There is no other way. You must be able to write about 180 words for task 1 and about 280 words for task 2 in 1 hour. You can use any type of handwriting as long as it is clear to see and shows proper use of capital letters and punctuation.

  3. Hi Liz,
    I’ve practised cursive handwriting since my childhood. Is it okay to use a cursive handwriting in ielts exam? Or is it advisable to write in print type writing where the letters are not conjoined? Please let me know which option is better to use especially for the Writing section. But I must mention that when I start writing, my handwriting automatically switches to cursive handwriting.

    • Your handwriting needs to be clear – otherwise – anything goes. Write in any style you want – just make it easy to read.

  4. Ms Liz
    im weak in enlish ,specially academic writing task 1 and 2.despite knowing all is to much difficult for me using paasive in writing.
    can u tell me how can i improve myself as a good writer….

  5. Hi Liz,
    Could you please advise me on this essay. Can I get band 7 for it? I don’t know which area I should improve my writing, thank you so much Liz.
    It is thought by some that children should be taught to write rather than just be good at touch-typing. In my opinion, I support that idea because I believe that handwriting is very important for all literary people, especially for children even though they are living in the computer era.
    Firstly, handwriting is an essential skill for all pupils who are attending primary to high schools. This is because there are a number of areas in which the schools require them to use their handwriting ability such as taking notes, doing tests and writing homework. If the children were not able to write or wrote but poorly, they might not get the desired results regardless of their good understanding of the subjects, which in turn influence their overall performance.
    Secondly, learning something by writing it down enable most people to understand more deeply and remember longer. Take for example children who are studying mathematics. Learning math requires the learners to understand the formulas which can be complicate. If the children learnt a formula by writing it down and then analyzing each of its parts, they would be able to understand it more clearly than those who did not.
    Last but not least, handwriting is also an important skill in later life. There are many situations in reality with which people need to deal by using their handwriting skills such as writing their personal names at bank or completing a form. Those who are able to do these well when necessary are more effective than those who are not and just type all the times.
    In conclusion, children should practice writing by hand at early age because this skill enables them to study well at school and is vital in their future. Parents and teachers ought to help kindergartens and young pupils practice frequently to ensure the skill is competent to them after the first years of school life.

  6. Huyen Nguyen says

    Hi Liz,

    For the question “to what extent do you agree or disagree”, do it really necessary to mention the “extent” in thesis statement such as “partly”, “totally”, “strongly”? Can I just state “I agree” or “I disagree” in my statement?

    • No, you can just state what your opinion is. You don’t actually need to use the words “partially” or “totally”. See my model essays on the writing task 2 page.
      All the best

  7. Hi Liz,
    Could you please check my essay on this topic? Thank you.

    In today’s society, people are increasing likely to rely on typing words by computers to deal with daily issues. This growing trend arouses the debate on the importance of learning handwriting skill at an early age. In this essay, I will present my reasons why I strong support the view that it is significant to educate children writing by hand.
    One reason for this is that handwriting is a basic tool for study. Young students not only need to acquire academic knowledge by listening to the lectures, but also need to make notes, do homework, and take tests. Most of these should be performed by hand written. Poor handwriting could result in negative effects on the performance. For example, an illegible handwritten answer might confuse the reader and cause misunderstanding; therefore, legible work is graded more favorable than messier counterparts.
    A further reason is that there is a link between golden career opportunity and beautiful handwriting. It is socially acceptable that a person, who could manage proper handwriting skill is always welcome as a well-educated and decent one. Although this view might be biased to some extent, indeed it works commonly. For instance, job applicants with excellent hand written resume in the labor market, tend to be easier to have ideal jobs on all occasions. It is benefited from their skilled handwriting style, which enhances good impression to recruiters, so they are expected to have more opportunities to win particular positions.
    In conclusion, I agree that it is very consequential for children to learn handwriting skill, because it could help them to succeed in both academic performance and future.

    Liz, my teacher said I have actually changed the topic completely,”the question doesnt ask you the benefit of a good hand written skill”, I dont think so . In my opinion, I support the view that handwriting is important to children,so I need to present the benefits of what the children could get from hand writing.
    In addition, my teacher changed some words, for example, in the first paragraph, he used : I will argue why I strong support the view that it is …..(but some teacher said it can be “I will present my reasons,..”). In the second paragraph, he used: One ‘argument’for this is , instead of mine”one reason for this…” However, I checked another book, it is said the correct one is “one reason for this …”

    …..I am so confused…could you please help me with it?

    Thank you .


    • You don’t have to state in the body paragraphs “I will argue why I support…” or “I will present my opinions” because you should already have given your opinion in the introduction. The body paragraphs just explain your main points “Firstly, one reason why handwriting …”. So your writing method for body paragraphs is fine. Although it must be said that your teacher’s method is not wrong, it just isn’t vital. These are all minor differences which will not change your score one way or the other way.

      The best way to your a thesis statement for an opinion essay is “In my opinion, I agree that children should be taught …”. You don’t need to tell the examiner what the essay will do, you need to give your answer “do you agree or disagree?”.
      All the best

      • Liz,

        Thank you so much! I feel that I could have a better sleep tonight….. I was scored 5 by my teacher so ….

        Thank you so much.

        I think your teaching method is so useful, and I want to steal some of your ideas ha ha ~ if you dont mind….

        Thanks a gain.

        Have a lovely day,

        from AUSTRALIA

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