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Dear Sarah
There are many resources available online and in print these days that help
teachers address the plagiarism issue, such as Jamie McKenzie's work at and Problems are the Solution by Steph Capra and Jenny Ryan
(available thru Amazon)

Although it doesn't fit your teacher's realm, here is an example given to a
Yr 8 class ...
"Your task is to research the existence of an unexplained phenomenon.
Evaluate the authenticity of your evidence to formulate a conclusion as to
whether your chosen phenomenon is based on fact or fiction" (Stephen
James-Smoult & Irene Foxon)

Putting students in a position where they have to decide an answer to a
problem that has at least two perspectives that need to be researched and
addressed is just one option.  If your teacher looks at some of the verbs
that are associated with the higher order thinking skills of Bloom's
Taxonomy ( would
be another starting point, as well as Jamie McKenzie's Questioning Toolkit
(in Problems are the Solution).

It takes a while to be able to shift our thinking to asking questions and
posing problems, but after a while it comes quite naturally.  I am currently
working with another teacher on a unit about our recent bushfires for our
kindergarten classes, and the question we are answering is How have the
recent ACT bushfires affected the native animals of the ACT?  Their task is
to identify what the habitats of a number of creatures was like, and now
that it has been destroyed, how will the animals who survived be affected.
Even though the answer might be as simple (to us) as the koala will not have
any food, there is a lot of learning happening for them to reach that

And they love the ownership that it gives them ...
Good luck

Barbara Braxton
Palmerston District Primary School

T. 61 2 6205 6162
F. 61 2 6205 7242

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