A Reader Writes… CSCOPE is the Root of All Evil (Part 3:2)

In response to the 2/14/13 post, “It Seems That CSCOPE is the Root of All Evil (Part 3 of 4),” a reader writes:

SC,

CSCOPE may have limited access, but there is a resource that I believe is similar and is open source: http://cte.unt.edu/

There is a ton of curriculum material here that, as far as I know, was developed in a similar way: by Texas teachers, for Texas teachers. I was part of this process, I did actually develop a significant amount of this content, and like anything made by humans it is not perfect. There are good lessons here and there are poor lessons. This simply gives those people who are curious about what CSCOPE might look like a glimpse. Those of you who have seen both (I have not) might be able to talk about the differences.

I can tell you that the process of creating this material is imperfect. As a full time teacher, obviously I had time, energy, and resource limitations. This material is designed to meet TEKS requirements, but the material I created was also based on my own knowledge and experience, and on the resources I had available that other teachers may not. It should also be noted that in the vast majority of the cases (and in my own experience) that these were the lessons actual Texas teachers used in actual Texas classes, and to one degree or an other it was because those lessons somehow stood out that we were asked to publish them. It was part of the design that other teachers could add, subtract, or change the material as they wished.

I do think this material is useful, I tried to do the best job I could, and I wish more teachers knew this material existed.

SC Response I checked out the site you referenced and it is focused on CTE courses.  Which is a good thing.  CSCOPE is focused on the core subjects and those teaching outside of the core (even if it is a related course) are often left to their own devices.  But it is not a CSCOPE replacement.

The format is similar to CSCOPE and I would suspect that the longer this collaborative is in place, the more dense (in provided resources) it will become. In fact, I believe that it is this increasing density issue that is the root of CSCOPE current problems.  Not only does resource density create navigation problems, it also overwhelms the novice who is unable to filter the critical, from the useful, from the enriching.  And an overwhelmed educator (or any other person) is a complaining educator.  Mix in an aggressive anti-public school faction and we find ourselves in the current situation.

The process you describe for lesson development and selection is similar to what CSCOPE uses, which is both powerful and flawed.  Powerful because it reflects what is being used and refined in the field.  Flawed because the uninformed view lessons that are always in draft stage as an endorsed, perfect product.

Thank you for reading the blog.  Thank you for your reasoned response.  Thank you for sharing a resource. Thank you for the work you have done to improve the quality of instruction in not only your classroom but the classroom of others as well.

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A Reader Writes… CSCOPE is the Root of All Evil (Part 4:2)

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