Teaching Students to Paraphrase

Paraphrasing is an important skill for students to develop, enabling them to express the same information in their own words. This not only helps them to understand the material better but also improves their writing and speaking skills. Paraphrasing also helps students avoid plagiarism by demonstrating their understanding of the source material and their ability to put it into their own words.

To teach students how to paraphrase, teachers can start by providing clear definitions and examples of what paraphrasing is and what it is not. This can help students understand the importance of avoiding direct quotes and using their words to express information.

One effective technique for teaching paraphrasing is to have students practice paraphrasing passages or sentences from texts they have read or heard. This can help students develop their skills and gain confidence in their ability to put information into their own words.

Another useful strategy is to have students compare their paraphrased version of a text with the source. This allows students to see the difference between a direct quote and a paraphrase and to understand the importance of avoiding plagiarism.

In addition to these techniques, teachers can encourage students to use visual aids, such as mind maps or graphic organizers, to help them understand the main ideas and details of the source material. These aids can help students organize the information and ensure that their paraphrase accurately captures the meaning of the source.

Finally, it is important to emphasize that paraphrasing is not simply changing a few words or rearranging a sentence. Instead, paraphrasing requires students to understand the source material and express it in their own words, considering the context and meaning of the information.

In conclusion, paraphrasing students is critical to any language arts curriculum. By providing clear definitions and examples, practicing paraphrasing, comparing paraphrased versions to sources, and using visual aids, teachers can help students develop the important skill of paraphrasing and avoid plagiarism.

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