Teaching note taking is tough. I think I finally have nailed it with my kids. They are really getting it, as early on as 4th grade.
First, we watch the free Brainpop (awesome) on Plagiarism. Then I have the kids identify plagiarism by reading an article exerpt from World Book and then comparing good and bad attempts at paraphrasing. If they can't do the simplest task of identify plagiarism, they won't have any hope of avoiding it.
Then, I have them practice paraphrasing a single sentence like: Mrs. Keegan is the most magnanimous educator in this fine institution.
Next, we work in pairs to learn the following note taking process:
After working with a partner to take good notes, they are ready to write new sentences. I tell them they will need to THINK AGAIN, then WRITE AGAIN.
They are producing better notecards and better paraphrased sentences, by following this pattern. It is easy for them to remember and easy to implement. Happy note taking!
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