Recently needed to read typeset Russian cursive. Some simple tips from what I learned:
Search for “russian typeset cursive cheat sheet” in your favorite search engine and look at the images – find your favorite(s)
The majority of cursive is similar to printed. Here are the ones I noted were most different in one easy graphic:
Cursive lower-case д can also be written like ∂. I asked native speakers about this some time ago, and I think the general consensus was that you can use either, but the g-like form is more common. Wikipedia says that it’s the standard in Russian school books, but ∂ is used in italic type.
I started learning Russian in school before personal computers and word processors. We had to learn cursive. It’s been decades since I hand-wrote a letter, but it’s still useful for quick notes to myself, and I do encounter it in images online from time to time. IMO not a waste of time to learn it!
Note on lower-case л and м that the little lead-in hook is necessary. Otherwise a word such as молимся might be practically indecipherable.
Yes, by far.
Ш and И are absolutely indistinguishable. Шишка looks ridiculous as a tongue twister.
IMO, cursive writing is a dying art. Most people either scrabble something incoherent or use block letters.