Blog #5 for not going to Boston: Liar liar pants on fire

I. Am. In. Love.

“Using Bloom’s Taxonomy to Teach Students about Plagiarism” by Melissa A. Vosen is probably one of the best NCTE articles I have ever read. Ever.

She starts her article by telling about the time she caught one of her 18 year old female students plagiarizing. Her student had “written” a beautiful memoir about her 12 year old daughter and how much she loved watching her participate in gymnastics. “I did not even bother trying to find an original source; it was pretty unlikely that she birthed a child when she was six” (43). This is all in her very first paragraph. How are you not already hooked?!

Sometimes we assume that our students know what we are talking about when we say the word “plagiarism.” Vosen’s article is so great because she literally gives her readers a short unit on how to teach students what plagiarism is and how to avoid it. It isn’t your boring cut and dry kind of activities either; she makes them go on scavenger hunts, she has them actively writing on the board, and she even has them catch her in the act of plagiarizing!

One of my favorite activities that she does with her students is having a debate about the school’s policy on plagiarism. She asks her students if “there should be a difference in punishment for those who knowingly plagiarize versus those who simply cite incorrectly” (45). This is a higher level question that really makes her students think and come up with valid arguments to defend their opinions.

You guys. I’m tired of blogging, and it’s now Thanksgiving break for me, so I’m sorry, but this blog will be a bit shorter than the rest.

PLEASE do yourselves a favor and get your hands on this article. It’s truly magnificent. And it’s a free unit/idea for mini lessons. You know you want to……..


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