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English 10: Class Notes  October 17, 2001

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In this week's class, students worked together in a reading exercise called, A Lesson in Internet Plagiarism

Also, students handed work on the story, "The Father." Here is a student sample from Jade on Thord's Character in "The Father."

The classes held discussions on the nature and causes of cheating by students. Find our notes below:

Afternoon Class: (Morning Class)

What do you think are the main reasons that students cheat in school?

Lazy, lack of time, dishonesty, fear of failure, pride, work is difficult, to see if you can do it without being caught (as a game), lack of discipline (no study, so cheat), lacking in confidence, everyone else is doing it!

Do you think that there are some kinds of cheating that are worse than others? Explain.

Cheating alone, cheating in a team, cheating a little (one sentence without reference), cheating a lot (buy the paper on the Internet or “borrow” from a senior student)

Some say, “cheating is always wrong.” Others say, “It depends on the cheating; for example, “group cheating” would be worse. If a person is unaware, such as from another country, and plagiarizes parts of paper then it is more excusable.

If you were a teacher, how would you punish a student whom you caught cheating?

Zero. But not the first time. Maybe a retake the first time, but later the penalty would be harder.

If you were a parent, how would you punish a child who was caught cheating at school?

We could remove a privilege; for example, TV or video games, or Internet, or computer. Ground them, which means they can’t go out with their friends for a set period.

Would you ever report a friend for cheating? Why or why not?

NO. Loyalty to friends is above everything, including the law.

How much do you think a parent can help a student with their schoolwork before it is considered cheating?

Tutoring by parents or others leads to temptation; let the tutor do the homework or mostly answer the questions. The result is often a weaker student who cannot do the work him or her.

At what age do you think students start cheating in school? How do you think teachers could deal with this issue early on to keep it from becoming a bigger problem later?

Some say at very young ages, even under six years old. When letter grades (A and so on) are given at around age nine.

Morning Class Notes:

What do you think are the main reasons that students cheat in school?

Work too hard, lazy, lack of time, too much socializing, they want the reward without the effort, parent’s expectations too high, after absence being afraid to ask for help, to avoid worrying the parents, to be seen as better by the peer group (friends of the same age), because other students cheat, I cheat, too.

Do you think that there are some kinds of cheating that are worse than others? Explain.

Cheating on the final is worse. (Most would say it depends at least a little). Cheating is cheating (doesn’t matter the degree)

If you were a teacher, how would you punish a student whom you caught cheating? If you were a parent, how would you punish a child who was caught cheating at school?

ZERO “0”; give another chance (for the first time), make a severe penalty; question them and try to help them to avoid it in future.

Talk to the child and ask them the reason. Then, decide on punishment. Verbal or a lecture. Withdraw privilege (TV, Nintendo, Telephone). Ground the child (no socializing). Speak to the teacher and get help for the family. Explain the consequence of cheating, especially at college level.

Would you ever report a friend for cheating? Why or why not?

NO. I would advise them to stop or caution them. I would prefer to help them than turn them in.

CODE: You don’t tell on anyone to the authorities (principal, teacher, police).

How much do you think a parent can help a student with their schoolwork before it is considered cheating?

Only with explaining and or demonstrating can a parent safely help the child. If the parent helps with formatting an assignment or actually doing the questions, then that is cheating.

At what age do you think students start cheating in school? How do you think teachers could deal with this issue early on to keep it from becoming a bigger problem later?

When letter grades start in Grade 4. Teachers can teach what cheating is when students are younger.

Jade's paragraph on "The Father."

     The “Father” is a good story, not only the writing, but also the description of the person’s character. The father is an arrogant man because he has a lot of money. The first time he appears in front of the priest he was “tall and serious,” and after he gives the order to the priest, he “twisted his cap” without saying anything and is ready to go. The second time he appears in front of the priest he is complacent and says, “I have no worries”. The third time he appears in front of the priest he is immensely proud and says there “came many men with he at the head." After he found that the priest knew his daughter-in-law is the richest girl in the village, he “brushed his hair back with one hand." Even though he has a lot of money, he is a stingy man. He says, “I would like to have him baptized on his own.” And “I didn’t want to pay the priest until I’d heard what place he had been given in the ceremony.” However, after his son died, he has changed. One day, a year later, the priest heard “a rattling at the door, a cautious fumbling at the latch,” so he opened the door and saw “a tall bent man, lean and white of hair” appear in front of him. The father donates half of his farm’s money to the poor, as he would like to do "some better things" in the rest of his life. This time the father sits there “with his eyes on the floor, the priest with his eyes on him” is compared with the first time he stood in the priest’s study and when he “twisted his cap as though about to go, the priest rose and went over to him took his hand and looked him straight in the eyes”. Through this story we learn a lesson that money doesn’t mean everything, and that we should respect each other no matter if we are rich or poor, and we should do more valuable things in our life to help others. This is an excellent story with a simple plot, and I like it very much.

Teacher's Comment: 
Jade has made particularly good use of quotations in her paragraph. She has also used a variety of sentences and sentence beginnings.

Note how the present tense is used to describe actions in the story, not the past tense. This is the usual style for writing the paragraph. {I made the correction!}

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