Language Arts Newsletter

March Edition

It's Your Lucky Day!

Hello Parents & Guardians,


Your monthly newsletter is coming to a you a bit early because there are important events right around the corner (Testing Season is upon us!). Read on for important information, including ways to prepare for the Writing FSA, and changes to homework policies to be aware of. Let's make March our lucky month by helping our students succeed in all of their academic ventures.


Sincerely,

Mrs. Groman

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FSA: Ways to Prepare

To help your child prepare for the approaching FSA Writing test on March 1st, I strongly encourage that they take the FSA Practice Writing Assessment online. Your child has been given a form to complete with your signature as extra credit for taking the FSA Writing and/or Reading Practice Assessment. Please ask them for the form or check Edmodo in the folder, "FSA" to get an additional copy that you can print and send to school with your child. All signatures on this form must be handwritten. *** See below for a link to the practice assessment site


Additionally, your child will be given a review packet this week in class. They will be working in class on this packet, so it is not homework, but I do encourage you to look over it with your child.

HOMEWORK POLICY CHANGE

One of the challenges of "going digital" in secondary schools is that plagiarism tends to become more of an issue as students are tempted to copy & paste answers to assignments without using proper citation. We have talked several times in class about what constitutes plagiarism. Yet, I have found that with nearly every assignment given both inside and outside of class, several students are either "copying and pasting" a few sentences or even entire paragraphs and presenting them as their own work.


The most common form of plagiarism I see is students looking up a question topic online and literally copying and pasting several sentences into their assignment. Students are required to use direct quotations from an article for many of their assignments, but they must use quotation marks ( " ") and give the name of the source. Failure to use quotation marks for even a sentence qualifies as plagiarism. Plagiarism is considered a form of academic dishonesty that is against the Student Code of Conduct. This "copy & paste" the answer is the new "cheating". Students no longer steal their friends homework and fill in the right answers; They pop a question into Google, copy the answer and try to pass it off as their own original writing.


To help limit the temptation to copy & paste, all homework must now be completed using paper and pencil, not submitted digitally. On the rare occasion that something is started digitally (usually on Edmodo) in class and assigned for homework, then students can continue typing their response- they will not need to start over on paper.


Please help us encourage academic honestly by looking over your child's work. Experts also suggest stressing the value of learning and growth over the value of letter grades. It is often the case that high-achieving students resort to cheating because they feel pressured to get high marks.

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