Sunday, November 10, 2013

Plagiarism in year 6

A few weeks ago I taught a class on plagiarism with year 6. It is a pretty dry topic and I had to think hard about how I was going to do it so that it made sense for these young minds, they had some previous knowledge on the topic and the goal was to extend this understanding. We also wanted to introduce writing a bibliography using Easybib so they could practise this skill before their exhibition at the end of the year.

The class was comprised of 4 students from each of the 6 classes who would become experts in this area, who would then create a teaching tool to share with the others in their class.

I had 30 scenario cards I created for a game I devised at the previous school I worked at. They were created using SP- studios avatar creator, Comic life and a combined effort of minds and are very visual and simple. The cards covered scenarios of piracy and plagiarism. These were our resources for the first lesson.

The learning intentions for the 4 lessons were:

1. Students will be aware there are creators behind all information, images and media. These creators have certain rights regarding their work that need to be respected.

2. Students will be aware they are also creators and doing their own work is respected above copying someone else's. They too have rights over their creations.

3. Students will have an easybib account and have a working knowledge of how to create a bibliography.

4. The students would transform their learning into a teaching tool for the rest of the year group to learn from.

The cards were randomly put out on to a table, students read them and then articulate the problem with their partner. The instructions were to 'Think about the problem on your card, talk about the problem on your card with the person next to you. Why is it a problem? Decide whether this problem is plagiarism or copyright infringement (piracy) based on the definitions on the table."

When they had decided, they were to place the card on the appropriate paper that was on the board with blutac. Then once all of the cards were placed on the board, all the students to look at the cards and where they were placed and see if any need to be moved to the other paper. (There was some shuffling of cards).

The cards were then taken from the plagiarism board and spread around the class again. (The piracy cards were retired at this point). The students then had to discuss with their partner what the act of plagiarism was in their own words. (Doing someone else's work for them, copying someone else's work, saying someone else's work is yours etc).

At the end of the lesson they shared the card they had with the class and what the act of plagiarism was. We then discussed why people plagiarise and how we might be able to avoid it. I then took some of the card graphics and created a Powtoon video to summarise their discussion in the days lesson.

The next lesson was setting up an Easybib account and learning to use it, and the third and fourth lesson was taken up by the students creating their own teaching tool to teach the rest of their class what they had learned. Some used Powtoons, some used Google presentation (this was a very collaborative group), some used Keynote and other used Go-animate. This was an extremely valuable and visual transformation of the learning for the students.

Overall I think the students enjoyed the learning and, I did too. It was interactive, thought provoking and fun!


khslibrarydonna said...

It's a really great approach, looking forward to hearing more as the year progresses.
Just wondering how you negotiated the small group
out of their regular classes - what were the others doing?

Mr Huebl said...

Great work. We also explicitly teach digital citizenship in Year 6 and I liked your approach. This video series is an interesting watch, too.

Thanks for sharing!

Paul Huebl
Yr 6 Teacher
Adelaide, Australia

Dianne said...

The Year 6 group have just received their laptops at the beginning of this academic year (August). The year 6 teachers have allocated 80 minutes a week to run technology rotations, each week each teacher teaches skills to a mixed group of students such as digital footprint, organising their files, using their machines, academic honesty. This particular rotation was part of a bigger PYP unit on expressing ourselves using technology as a tool, so it was a longer time period to spend on academic honesty.

It is a good approach for these children to learn about their new machines in a targeted manner.

Julie said...

Dianne -
This looks great! Are you willing to share your scenario cards? I have created a scope an sequence for digital citizenship and citation and often find myself trying to create engaging lessons on not so engaging topics. I don't want to sit and lecture to the kids, because we both know that isn't very effective.

Thanks for sharing - you are always doing great things.