Lesson Plan: Plagiarism: Do’s & Don’ts

Written By: Ms. Brittany Lazur

Time Allotment

5 50-minute class periods.


Students explore various types of plagiarism through a guided webquest activity. Then, the class looks at examples of student work in a mock plagiarism board activity. The culminating activity is the creation of an infographic that informs readers of the do’s and don’ts of plagiarism. Media-–-Rich-Lesson-Plan.doc

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:
  • Determine what plagiarism is and what it is not
  • Identify forms of plagiarism
  • Use piktochart.com to create a visually-appealing infographic that synthesizes what they have learned about plagiarism

Media Components - Video/Web

  • PBS Learning Media: www.pbslearningmedia.org. This website has the video that introduces the plagiarism board activity, and it also allows for easy formative assessment quizzes to check student understanding.
  • QR Codes: QR Codes are incorporated into the webquest activity. Students must scan the codes to be directed to the sites where they can find answers to the worksheet.
  • Daily Infographic: www.dailyinfographic.com. This website uploads a new infographic every day. It is an excellent database of infographic examples in a variety of categories.
  • Piktochart: www.piktochart.com. Piktochart is a free website with an easy-to-use interface that allows students to create their own infographics.


  • Computer for teacher along with projection capabilities
  • Computers/tablet for each student
  • Webquest Worksheet
  • Plagiarism Board Assignment Sheet
  • Infographic Assignment Sheet
  • What is an infographic? Presentation & Guided Notes

Teacher Preparation

  • Familiarize yourself with infographics (I recommend spending an hour or so on dailyinfographic.com to see some examples) and with piktochart.com.
  • Review activities.
  • Review school’s plagiarism policy, if it exists.
  • Copy worksheets listed above.

Introductory Activities

Day 1
  1. Begin class with a free-write on the essential question, “What is plagiarism? What is not plagiarism?” Allow students 5 minutes to write.
  2. Utilize a think-pair-share method to incite discussion about plagiarism. Ask probing questions during the share part of the discussion. Appropriate questions could include questions such as, “What if I reword my source? Is that plagiarism?” and “How can I avoid plagiarism?”
    • NOTE: It is important at this point in time to only ask the probing questions. Do not answer them yourself.
  3. Introduce the mini-unit to students. Explain that we will be taking an in-depth look at what plagiarism is and isn’t, as well as what steps they can take to avoid committing it themselves.

Learning Activities

MATERIALS: Webquest Worksheet, student tablet/computer, Plagiarism Board Activity Worksheets, What is an Infographic Guided Notes, What is an Infographic Presentation
Day 1
  1. Pass out the webquest worksheet to students. If your students will be using a tablet, demonstrate how to use a QR reader to scan the image, which will send them where they need to go in order to answer the worksheet’s questions. Point out that the URLs are included if something goes haywire with the QR codes or if you are using computers.
  2. Allow time for students to work through the webquest. I allow students to work with their shoulder partners, but this is up to the preference of the instructor.
  3. Assign the webquest as homework if the students do not complete it in class.

Day 2
  1. Collect webquest from students.
    • It is important to grade these quickly and pass them back to students, at least by Day Four. They will need to utilize their findings in the culminating activity.
  2. Have students complete the formative assessment from PBS Learning Media on plagiarism at: http://prairiepublic.pbslearningmedia.org/student/code/bee367/.
  3. When all students have completed the formative assessment, review the answers with them, insuring that any confusion is addressed.
  4. Introduce the video from PBS Learning Media (http://prairiepublic.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/a80790bf-e0d8-4325-bdd2-075340879f91/a80790bf-e0d8-4325-bdd2-075340879f91/) by explaining to students that they should watch for reasons why some teens have reported resorting to plagiarizing. After the video, discuss. Ask: “What were some of the reasons teenagers gave for plagiarizing?” Tell students to turn-and-talk to review. Then, cold-call students to each give one reason.
  5. Lead the discussion to the activity in the second half of the video. Explain to students that they will be participating in an activity just like it.
  6. Divide students into groups of 3-4. Pass out a different potential plagiarism example to each group. Instruct students to read through all of the information presented, and as a group, discuss whether or not plagiarism was committed. They should also look at the school’s plagiarism policy (if one exists) to find out what actions should be taken by the school.
  7. Allow students 15-20 minutes to review and discuss. Then, have each group explain to the class what occurred in their example, whether or not it was plagiarism, and why.

Day 3
  1. If necessary, finish presentations from Day Two.
  2. Ask students: “What is an infographic? If you have never heard of an infographic before, what do you think it might be?” Have students turn-and-talk to discuss this question. Discuss as a group.
  3. Present “What is an infographic?” presentation. Have students follow along with the guided notes.
  4. When you are done with the presentation, allow students time to explore the many, many infographics found on http://www.dailyinfographic.com

Day 4
  1. Find an infographic from http://www.dailyinfographic.com to share with the class. You could even pick that day’s infographic! Use this as an opener for class, pointing out the qualities of an infographic that the students see.
  2. Present the culminating activity (see below).
  3. Culminating Activity

    MATERIALS: Tablet or computer for students or groups of students, Infographic Grading Rubric
    Day Four (continued):
  4. Go through the requirements of their final assignment for this mini-unit, found on the Infographic Assignment sheet. Emphasize to students that they have already done the necessary research to complete the infographic earlier in the week with their webquest.
  5. Show students how to use www.piktochart.com.
  6. Allow students time in class to work on creating their infographics in groups of no more than 2 people. As they begin working, pass back their graded webquests.

Day 5
  1. Allow students the class period to finish their infographics. These should be done at the end of the day.
  2. Require students to email the infographic to you by clicking the “share” button at the top of the page. Then, have the students self-assess using the grading rubric.

Cross-Curricular Activity

  • Math: statistics, graphs, and charts in the infographics
  • Library/Media: plagiarism policies, research skills, infographics
  • Science/Technology: utilizing infographic technology
  • Social Studies: plagiarism lesson for essays
  • Art: elements of design, color theory, composition
  • Community Connections

    Students can research plagiarism penalties in their area as well as at a college of their interest.