8
   

Plagiarism or working together

 
 
margbucci
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 02:41 pm
Aidan.....
Come on, you are an intelligent human being. If you had 3 students from a family all top achievers, active in the school, all around good kids would you not extend even the hope that #4 would be similar. Even if that hope was wrong hasn't the family and even the student earned some respect by being put in your Honors English class. I have to go back and reread my initial post all the time...but I think I have clearly stated that it is not her final decision of the zero that bothers me as much as her "rush to judgement" dismissal of their explanation and the unprofessional way she carried herself.
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 02:55 pm
@margbucci,
And I said she should have done a better job of teaching your daughter and her friend about what exactly constituted plagiarism and how to avoid it. If her attitude was indeed unprofessional and humiliating and dismissive of her students - she should be addressed.

But the fact that your other children are honor students has nothing to do with whether or not this specific child knows what plagiarism is or even whether or not she is gifted in language arts. As a teacher, I would never make assumptions about a child's abilities based on what their siblings did or even on what that specific child could achieve in terms of an overall grade average which spoke to what excellence she could achieve in another subject. She might have qualified for honors courses because she was gifted in math or science and worked incredibly hard to get a B in language arts.

Maybe this teacher is a dismissive and arrogant bitch. Maybe she does need to be addressed about her attitude. That's why I said that the first thing I'd do is talk to her.
But more importantly, I'd teach my daughter what she could do to avoid this situation in the future - no matter who she would be dealing with in the future.

0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 03:04 pm
@margbucci,
Quote:
I have clearly stated that it is not her final decision of the zero that bothers me as much as her "rush to judgement" dismissal of their explanation and the unprofessional way she carried herself.


The phrase "rush to judgment" would have been awfully ironic if you hadn't taken the time to discuss this respectfully with the teacher before flying off the handle.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  2  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 03:49 pm
The more I read and think about this thread, the more it is bothering me. Maybe it is the knee-jerk combativeness. Maybe it is the thing about "my kids are A students".

I have sat on both sides of the table-- and I guess my main point is that the best situation is when Parents and Teachers work things out respectfully.

I was teaching high school physics when I had students write about a practical use of electromagnetic waves. I received a wonderful paper about quantum mechanics-- the problem was it covered material that would give a graduate physics student nightmares. It took me about 10 minutes with an internet search to figure out where it was lifted from.

Of course, I gave a 0.

The parents came in on the warpath. I was respectful, and I brought their straight-A daughter's paper, and I brought a print out of the website where most of the paragraphs were lifted word for word.

I couldn't believe the parent's reaction-- "She is a straight A student!" they protested as if that meant anything in a clear case of cheating. They complained about her record and were unswayed when I pointed out that her learning this lesson in high school is far better then learning it in college (where she would certainly fail the class and may be kicked out).

These parents wouldn't give up. They went to the department head (my boss), then they went to the principal. I have know idea if they went any higher.

As a parent, there is no way I would do this to my kids. There is a certain point where shielding your kids from reality is harmful.

0 Replies
 
margbucci
 
  2  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 04:02 pm
ebrown,
Again Irespectfully ask you to read my initial thread. I did not mention she was an a student, i was not on the "warpath" i simply asked any thoughts? Yes, I stand by the rush to judgement...this was not an essay a paper or ever presented to be as such. It was vocabulary sentences given over the summer that she and her friend worked very hard on. I thought the teacher threw out the "plagiarism" charge really quickly.
As my daughter said in her "punishment paper"..."we discussed the meaning of the word, brainstormed and wrote our sentences. We never looked at what the other was writing." If she had wanted to cheat, she could have copied one of her older siblings papers as the assignment has been the same for YEARS!!!
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 04:09 pm
@margbucci,
Quote:
My main point is that the best situation is when Parents and Teachers work things out respectfully.


I hope you heard my main point.
0 Replies
 
margbucci
 
  2  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 04:28 pm
I hear you loud and clear. Thank you! I think that is the point, "respectfully". That is what has my feathers in a ruffle....she did not treat the students respectfully. That has been the sticking point and that is what we want to talk to her about. Students deserve some level of respect whether they are an A student or an F student. So you and I can absolutely agree on that!
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Thu 8 Oct, 2009 11:52 pm
@aidan,
aidan wrote:

David wrote:
Quote:
The stated facts appear to assume that the plaintiffs
were going to be defendant 's students in the following year.
Quote:
Well yeah - because usually students enroll in courses at the end of the semester
for the next semester - so everyone will know which students
will be in which courses so they can make schedules and order books, etc. HELLO David! Anybody home?! Laughing Laughing
In the 8th grade?
That 's news to me, but its been so long ago that I must admit
even for college or law school, I don 't remember when we did it.


Quote:

I'd talk to my child before and at least as intently as I talked to the teacher.
I don 't know whether to interpret that language as punitive
or vaguely threatening the student; ( "do thus and so, or else . . . ." )
In some work environments, "counselling" an employee is deemed a penalty in and of itself.
On the other hand, a simple dispassionate n non-judgmental
discussion of the situation can be very helpful and supportive.
It can be good and re-assuring to know that those whom u hold dear r on your side.
On the other hand, I have been acquainted with mothers who were ex-teachers
and who advocated and favored the positions of teachers
ex officio who made their offspring the victims of illogic and injustice. The mothers bragged to me about it.
Thay were disloyal to their children.
I wonder how thay 'd think of reciprocal disloyalty from their children.



Quote:

She (your daughter) should learn and understand why it is always a good idea
to do her own homework by and for herself.
This will never hurt her and can only help her- no matter what teacher she has.
Candor moves me to question the merit of denouncing collaborative efforts in academic work.
What matters is the success of the learning process.
This can result from explorations of the subject matter
in co-operation with parents, friends, neighbors, or alone in an ivory tower.
Pleasing the teacher counts for nothing. U can 't learn from that.
U don 't go to an automotive showroom to please the salesman; u go to get a car.
U don 't go to school to please the teacher; u go to acquire information.





Thus saith David
OmSigDAVID
 
  -1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 12:06 am
@margbucci,
margbucci wrote:

I hear you loud and clear. Thank you! I think that is the point, "respectfully".

That is what has my feathers in a ruffle....she did not treat the students respectfully.

That has been the sticking point and that is what we want to talk to her about.
Students deserve some level of respect whether they are an A student or an F student.
So you and I can absolutely agree on that!
YES !
Your point is very well taken.
If the teacher had not poisoned the relationship with contempt
for her students (the very reason that she is there and draws a salary),
but she had instead invited them to a cordial n friendly discussion
of the PROs and CONs of the subject, then no harm woud have resulted.
From your description of the situation, I infer that she was gratifying
her ego, her self-image as a hot-shot important person,
at her victims' expense.





David
0 Replies
 
OmSigDAVID
 
  -1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 12:24 am
@msolga,
msolga wrote:
Quote:
Usually students I've taught ask first,
before working on an assignment together.
The 2 students involved in this matter are not on notice of the decisions of the students whom u have taught,
nor are those 2 students bound to follow in the footsteps of your students.



Quote:
(Unless, of course, the teacher has stated it's a group assignment & will be assessed accordingly.)
Otherwise, generally the expectation would be that each student conduct her own research & present
her own findings.
The teacher can expect, in the privacy of her own mind,
anything that she chooses to expect, so long as she treats her students with appropriate courtesy
and reasonable cordiality and the teacher refrains from acting irrationally,
nor upon the basis of professional ignorance, such as hurling around the concept of plagiarism,
without knowing what that is and using it as a weapon against her students.





David
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 03:15 am
@OmSigDAVID,
Quote:
In the 8th grade?
That 's news to me, but its been so long ago that I must admit
even for college or law school, I don 't remember when we did it


In a lot of school systems, the eighth grade is when students do start being identified and steered toward accelerated courses in math or English. This mom said that this girl was in an honor's English class. She would have had to be identified as a student who qualified and then she'd have had the option to either do honors or regular English. At least that's how it is in any school system I've worked in. So yes, once the students have their final English grade at the end of seventh grade, the students are broken up accordingly and put on a roster which the teacher gets so s/he can plan her curriculum for the next year.
Quote:
I don 't know whether to interpret that language as punitive
or vaguely threatening the student; ( "do thus and so, or else . . . ." )
In some work environments, "counselling" an employee is deemed a penalty in and of itself.
On the other hand, a simple dispassionate n non-judgmental
discussion of the situation can be very helpful and supportive.
It can be good and re-assuring to know that those whom u hold dear r on your side.
On the other hand, I have been acquainted with mothers who were ex-teachers
and who advocated and favored the positions of teachers
ex officio who made their offspring the victims of illogic and injustice. The mothers bragged to me about it.
Thay were disloyal to their children.
I wonder how thay 'd think of reciprocal disloyalty from their own children


It wasn't punitive. I meant that I'd care much more that my daughter learn what she needed to learn to make her life more smoothly functioning than I'd care what the teacher thought about my daughter or about me or about the situation.
If she (the teacher) wants to jump to conclusions and operate on misconceptions - sad- but am I gonna be able to change an adult woman's personality or modus operandi? Probably not. But what I can do is teach my daughter how to avoid another such situation that ends in confusion and help her learn to work around such people by teaching her what will be a very advantageous life skill- I'd tell her to keep her nose clean and don't give the woman anything to complain about in the future.

I'm always a mother first David - because I know there's nothing better than a good teacher but there's nothing worse than a bad teacher. I've seen it with my own eyes and I am not loyal to and do not defend bad teachers just because I'm a teacher myself. Are you loyal to bad lawyers?
Quote:
Candor moves me to question the merit of denouncing collaborative efforts in academic work.
What matters is the success of the learning process.
This can result from explorations of the subject matter
in co-operation with parents, friends, neighbors, or alone in an ivory tower.
Pleasing the teacher counts for nothing. U can 't learn from that.
U don 't go to an automotive showroom to please the salesman; u go to get a car.
U don 't go to school to please the teacher; u go to acquire information.

When a group project is assigned - that's one thing. But when homework is given, most teachers assume and hope that the student is doing it on their own, because the purpose of homework is reinforcement and practice of whatever skill or concept is in question.
So when two learners are doing it together, it's hard for a teacher to gain a sense of whether one child or both have mastered the concept. One learner might still be very confused, but the other learner supplied the methodology and answers that ended up on the paper to make it look like both learners know what they're doing.

My own daughter SUCKED at math David. And she was in a fifth or sixth grade class, I can't remember now, where the math lessons were in groups. So she'd sit and listen to the answers that the group came up with, write them down on her paper, get A's on all her homework assignments and then FAIL every test because she had no idea HOW the group got the answers they got - but she was perfectly within her rights as a member of that group to profit from and write down the answer the group got.

I got her switched to another math class where there were more traditional teaching methods used, where each child had to show evidence of his or her own work BEFORE they failed to learn enough to pass the test - because this is what she needed. Because she DID need to learn how to add, subtract, multiply and divide.

Group work is good for some things - projects and such as that - and if someone is tutoring someone else, that can be very helpful. But in general, homework is best done on one's own so the student, parent and teacher can all be aware what that child does understand and what that child still needs tuition in.

Quote:
Thus saith David

So stipulated!





Thus saith David




OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 03:38 am
@aidan,

That seems reasonable, Rebecca; everything u said.





David
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  2  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 10:35 am
@margbucci,
Although the teacher may have been disrespectful, it will not help your daughter or you to not handle the situation respectively. You need to address this with an openness on your part - you were not in the room when this occurred and even if your daughter is some one trustworthy and never in trouble, all children and adults see things from a different perspective. Perhaps your daughter's viewpoint is a bit oversensitive? Understandably and maybe misheard what the teacher was saying. Maybe the teacher had a bad day? Maybe she has had many incidences of children cheating?

In either case (and no matter if she is at fault), why would you want to make an enemy of your child's teacher? It would be best to approach the meeting as wanting to work with the teacher and to prevent this sort of thing from happening again.
margbucci
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 11:01 am
@Linkat,
Linkat,
I agree with you and never had any intention of approaching it any other way. Some other posters are all riled up, I am not. Mother, teacher, nurse, lawyer, whatever your background read the original thread and take it for how it is presented. My daughter called me from school sobbing and gave her version. The next call was from the mother of her friend who had recounted a strikingly similar version(maybe they plagiarized that,too!) My daughter has never given me a reason to lead me to think she was lying. I know she wasn't lying about working on the assignment because both sets of parents hosted the girls on different days to work on the assignment. I naively at the time thought it was so great that they were spending that much time on a summer assignment, honestly never thinking vocabulary sentences could lead to a plagiarism charge. I digress. It has always been our intention to go to the meeting with an open mind and hear the teachers version. I never had any intention of making an enemy of the teacher. Is it not my right and duty as a parent to get to the bottom of this?
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 12:16 pm

Under these circumstances, justice requires that the teacher be disciplined and put in her proper place.
If she continues to believe that such misconduct is acceptable, then she may well recidivate.





David
Linkat
 
  2  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 01:41 pm
@margbucci,
Yes, of course it is your right. And I'm glad you are following up. And being in your position, I would be angry and ready to rip that teacher's head off (well at least initially). And I also would have looked at it favorably to have the girls help each other - I don't think it is a negative thing - maybe you can point that out to the teacher - it was more a helping thing and to increase the excitement and enjoyment of learning - just so the teacher can understand your side of things.

Hopefully it is more a misunderstanding and you and the teacher can work as a team (which is the way it should be).

Best of luck!
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 01:42 pm
@OmSigDAVID,
I do agree - if the teacher does display bad behavior at this meeting and is unwilling to work with you - then you bring it further. But hopefully this will not be necessary.
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 02:46 pm

Fotostat some dictionaries
to teach her what plagiarism is
and make her promise to teach fonetic spelling.





David
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Oct, 2009 03:03 pm
@margbucci,
So what's happened since you emailed the school & asked for a meeting, margbucci? When is the meeting to be held & who'll be attending? I'll be very interested to hear about how it went.
0 Replies
 
OmSigDAVID
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Oct, 2009 07:32 pm
@Linkat,
Linkat wrote:

I do agree - if the teacher does display bad behavior at this meeting
and is unwilling to work with you - then you bring it further.
But hopefully this will not be necessary.

The first step is the perpetrator confessing that she was rong
and promising to treat her students with as much courtesy as those to whom she applied for a job.
If it is a public school, then the public pays for her services.
If it is a private school, then the customers pay for her services which do not include insolence.





David
0 Replies
 
 

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