Cheating. It happens in every classroom, in every school. Some students are crafty and get away with it. Others take bold approaches that backfire spectacularly - like stealin an entire Wikipedia article and then citing the same article. Teachers have Google too, you're gonna get caught.
MCMax49 asked schoolteachers of Reddit: What is the stupidest way you've seen someone try and cheat?
Submissions have been edited for clarity, context, and profanity.
Well that's one approach.
Early elementary school they had a workbook they were supposed to take home, do a couple pages of, return.
One kid glued two pages together then claimed his book didn't have them.
"Reality can be whatever I want."
My parents used to force me to do practice workbooks in order so I couldn't skip the hard pages.
My solution? Tear the pages out, scribble out the page numbers, and show it to them as completed work.
"Covered in yeast;" we've all been there...
Once in science class, we did the experiment where you blow up a balloon using yeast.
You fill the flask with warm water, yeast, and sugar, then stretch a balloon over the neck of the flask. Leave it somewhere for a few hours, and the balloon inflates due to the build up of gas. I declared that whoever has the biggest balloon gets a cupcake at the end of the day. We leave the flasks on the windowsill, then the kids go outside to play.
I head back inside early to set up the next activity. A little boy is lying on the floor, covered in yeast and surrounded by empty flasks and popped balloons. He had snuck in to blow up his balloon himself. The problem is that you can't tie off the balloons - you have to stretch it around the neck of flask. So he had been frantically blowing up balloons, then trying to get it over the flask in time before the air escaped. Over and over again.
He did not get the cupcake.
That sounds like the aftermath of a Jigsaw trap.
Had a student submit a plagiarized essay that began, "As a high school girl, I have experienced how sexist school dress codes are."
The student who turned it in was a 6th grade boy.
Found the original source the student plagiarized from. My memory of the wording was a bit off, but you can still see why the plagiarism would have been a bit obvious. He did at least omit the first sentence.
So did he just copy paste it without even reading it first?
He clearly read it because he omitted a couple of sentences that referenced another article. I was dumbfounded.
Helping is a better life skill than taking tests.
I teach in Ecuador where there's a whole culture of helping others out even if it means cheating and corruption. Basically kids will blatantly get up and whisper to each other with most teachers in the room. I'm kind of a hard-ass though had ripped up their papers if I saw any of that. The funny thing is even when I literally caught them cheating they'd actively deny it as if I'm deaf or blind and can't perceive it.
Teachers can use Google too.
I teach public speaking and my students had to do an informative speech.
Student gets up in front of the class and gives a speech on why we should recycle. Okay, obviously didn't grasp the assignment cause that's a persuasive speech.
The speech the kid gave sucked and was all over the place. The outline he gave me was damn near perfect. So through the plagiarism checker it went. It came out to something like 97% plagiarized. He copied this website from India about recycling.
I was a TA at the time so the instructor on record decided he would just fail the assignment and she filed a formal complaint. He had to do a workshop and if he did it again in his college career he'd fail whatever class he did it in.
Well he did recycle.
At least they cited it?
I had a student read a Wikipedia article. Then cite it.
"Not a credible source!"
It isn't, but all the stuff that they cite usually is. It would take a very small amount of work to reword a Wiki article.
A middle finger to the man.
A student took a piece of paper with the answers written on it and laid it flat against the wall. He sat in a seat close to it. Obviously I saw the random piece of paper against the wall.
F*ck. There is stupid, but this is the absurdly sad kind of stupid. XD
I did the similar thing in middle school but I pasted the sheet under the board. Never got caught though.
I did this in my elementary, but I was lucky enough to have a notice board beside me. I just pulled a couple of thumb pins, stuck my paper on there, nobody ever noticed.
Catching plagiarism is important, but...
I teach undergrad: flat out obvious plagiarism. ESL student who normally has an awkward and backward writing style suddely drifting into lucid, clear, English-from-birth writing with nary a quotation mark in sight. Two thirds of a major term paper made up of uncited, obvious word-for-word copypasta. Not a dumb student, either, in a lot of ways, but shit, we use Turnitin. It was submitted digitally. All I had to do was highlight blocks and Google.
Turnitin is a b!tch.
Submitted my discursive English essay and I get 6%. Okay, sure, what is it?
the references and the page numbers. Also my SCN number that it flagged from a previous paper I had done for another class.
Creative essay time: 2%?? Small chunks of one sentence (we're talking one of two words, then a gap, then another few words), as well as the page number AGAIN, and my SCN number AGAIN.
Teacher here. That's mostly what we use it for. We know that the site is sh*t, but it is helpful in detecting major cases of plagarism. I only generally flag a paper for investigation if the thing reads over 25%.
It's an example of bad labeling.
This text isn't 9% plagiarized, 60% plagiarized, etc.
It's 9% or 60% overlapping in text with other known text.
Plagiarized is a different dimension, and should be reported as such. And it should be a boolean, or at least an independent percentage generated by doing some kind of processing of the percent overlapping.
This teacher has some winners.
I had a student clearly copy something from Wikipedia, deliver it as an informational speech, turned in the corresponding paper copy pasted from Wikipedia, and cited the Wikipedia page that they copied (the reference page was the only original work there).
Needless to say, they failed the assignment and the course. I referred them to our dept. chair. Who kicked it up the line saying something like, "I've never seen something so blatant and stupid."
Use the tools available to you.
My wife teaches autistic preschoolers and kindergarteners. They had to fit shapes into a block that had shape cut outs in them. She caught one kid trying to cut the edges of a Star with a Play Dough knife. This kid is my hero.
That kid was truly thinking outside the box, or rather star. A+