Composition 148 日本語の筆写について②


About a month has passed since I started handwriting Japanese passages. I thought it was just too old-fashioned and inefficient self-torture. However, I found it great fun soon after I had begun it. Now I do it every day.
Let's write down three uses of handwriting here.

First, handwriting is an excellent mental exercise. You may doubt it, but it is quite hard to input something with eyes and output it with hands. I always feel like loading on and dynamizing my brain when I'm transcribing. If you want to increase its effectiveness, add some rules to your activity. For example, aim to copy a page without any miswriting or within a time limit.
However, handwriting has some demerits, too. First of all, it causes eye strain. My eyesight probably has gotten poor for a month. Besides, I have knee ache every time because I sit straight for tens of minutes while transcribing.

Second, handwriting improves my writing ability. To be precise, it decreases recoil from writing rather than sophisticates my writing techniques. After I made handwriting my habit, I feel like words and phrases overflow from my mind when I try to make sentences. Now my writing less frequently reaches a dead end than the past.
I think whether handwriting can develop one's writing skill or not depends on the choice of model. I mainly choose novels, tanka poems, textbooks, and articles on Wikipedia, so I'm afraid my writing skill in a readable style, just like this composition's style, hasn't been polished.

Third, handwriting enables me to accustom myself to technical or abstract sentences. I challenged reading so-called 'classics' several times but finally failed because their sentences were too difficult for me. I guess you have the same experience. (If not, study harder and read more books!) However, I have learned handwriting is a useful method in such a case. After patiently transcribing for a month, I got used to the classics' style and started to understand what the authors had wanted to say. Now I'm reading some books step by step, which I couldn't read all in my college days.
Of course, handwriting is not only one right way. Some people read books aloud to be accustomed to the styles. Some people think as follows: If you choose a book too difficult for you, you should give up reading it soon and reselect an easier one.

Okay, I summarize what I want to tell you. I don't mean, 'Handwriting has many unbelievable effects, so you must try it!' Each student has his or her personality, and no method suits everyone. I must not force you to handwrite.
What I want you to do is not imitating me aimlessly but also searching your own way.
As I mentioned in the beginning, I formerly thought, 'Handwriting? Ah, what an out-of-date and meaningless work!' However, I tried it by chance and had fun. I have continued it for more than a month.
You may dislike a particular method even though you have never tried it. It may just fit you in reality. Don't you feel so? If the answer is 'yes,' what kind of method is it? Do you want to try it? Reflect on yourself profoundly and repeatedly to find your way.
 みなさんにも、食わず嫌いだけど本当は自分に合っている勉強法があるのかもしれません。あるとしたらそれは何でしょうか? 是非ともじっくり考えてみてください。