To my students’ credit, no one seems to have plagiarized their assignment on plagiarism. They did, however, have some interesting interpretations of what they were expected to do.
As for me, I played bad cop by giving them a stern lecture about plagiarism, and then played good cop by giving them an easy activity and letting it all drop. In short, in a reverse-Roadhouse, I was not nice, until it was time to be nice.
The student whose actions triggered the assignment, was caught between playing dumb (I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to copy word for word) and being mad at me for being a jerk (in his defense, the role of bad cop requires one be a jerk). His journal entry had some bad English, but at least it was his English.
Pretty soon it’ll once again be time to not be nice. Right about the time I give them a speech assignment.