- Reviewed on Tuesday, February 11, 2014
- Grades Used: pK, K, 1, 2, 4, 6, 8
- Dates used: 2008-2013
This is truly the best curriculum ever. You cannot get a better deal at such a rigorous level.
We have tried everything with my eldest son. He did the second grade, the fourth grade, and the sixth grade Light Units for Christian Light. While he enjoyed it, and his test scores proved he mastering a lot of skills, for some reason I believed there was something better when I read the homeschool ads a articles. We tried other things, but always come back to CLE. We are not going to waver from it again.
My eldest son just finished the Language Arts grade 7 from Calvert in about 2-3 months, and he turned around and said, this is too easy, the only hope is Christian Light. So he is back in the Language Arts for grade 8. Of course he loves Grammar, and CLE provides a thorough study of that, it makes him happy. His math isn't working out well with Aleks so we are going to get him the math from CLE as well tomorrow.
My youngest used the preschool curriculum which is actually Rod and Staff's I believe. He then used the preliminary Kindergarten II. He responded so well to it and wanted to do more than one lesson a day. I took a break from CLE to see what else was out there for him, we belong to a Charter School that will let us try different material. Oak Meadow (a joke), Calvert, the Well Trained Mind language materials, but he didn't have the same drive as he did when you set him down with his CLE workbooks. Unfortunately the charter school won't buy CLE because it is Christian. Boo!
He is now on the First Grade material and loves it. It surprises me the challenges they present to the children, and they respond so well. I think, oh, he can't learn this yet, he is only 5, but then he turns around and scores perfectly on their tests and quizzes showing mastery. And the whole time it is done in such a simple and gentle manner, it is shocking how wonderful this humble curriculum is. You don't realize what you have until you walk away.
I love the light units, the way they are laid out are so simple, direct, no twaddle. It is easy to pick it up and go without much preparation. I think the writing aspect could be fleshed out a bit more however. I also think they could make the science a bit more challenging. But perhaps you should not mess with their gently approach as it seems to work so well. We typically stick with Apologia for extra science though. Again another Christian curriculum that can't compare to the secular ones.
Also Mennonites are strong pacifists, and it shows in the History textbooks, I think it was grade 6. We are not pacifists. But, we were able to talk about it from our point of view, we don't see the justice in letting evil people continuing to commit heinous crimes, if we let that happen then we are just as guilty. Although I get that they depend on God to win in a fight for them....
The only thing is that we aren't Christian. I don't see this as a problem though. We are monotheistic We believe in God the Father, and do read the Bible because it is the greatest story ever told, but we aren't "religious". We are okay with that. It teaches the kids in ways that we normally wouldn't and sparks great conversations. I greatly respect the Mennonite community as I used to live near one in PA. I don't see how it would harm you in any way to use this curriculum if you were not looking for religious material. It has a strong foundations in training character, who doesn't need that, especially in today's world. I also like that it is so innocent. I don't have to worry about politically correct propaganda, it is so hard to find material without that.
I hope this was helpful in giving a review that wasn't Christian.
- Reviewed on Thursday, January 3, 2013
- Grades Used: Kinder II-6th
- Dates used: 2006-2013
I am the parent to 7 children and can't say enough how blessed I have been by Christian Light. I haven't used all of their curriculum for each grade, but I have used some of each grade. Currently I am teaching Kindergarten II to my 5 and 7 year olds. I love it and so do they. My five year old is on grade level and my 7 year old has a learning disability. The curriculum is so easy to teach that my 6th grader can take over teaching it when neccesary.
There are many Kinder Programs out there, and my family begins with R&S preschool between 3-5. I find that the math is a little too simple with Kinder II but the extra writing practice is wonderful. We use R&S Arithmetic 1 and CLE Kinder II for Kindergarten and feel free to take things as fast or slow as we need to
After starting out homeschooling with Christian Light I moved away to more "exciting" programs over the years but keep coming back to CLE. It's Christ Centered, easy to use, affordable and has excellent academic results.
I really love to second Sunrise Editions and look forward to using CLE again in the future.
I was homeschooled myself and used their Home Ec curriculum which I have reviewed many times!
We are currently using 6th grade Social Studies and will move on to Learning to Read and 1st grade Reading and Language Arts. We love CLE Bible and switched to their Elementary School Curriculum for Bible this year.
A few years ago we felt bogged down with CLE Language Arts in grade 4. It includes Grammar, Handwriting and Spelling with Writing which is amazing. We didn't persevere and I regret that. If I had it to do over I would have dropped non essential curriculum and concentrate on that, Arithmetic and Bible.
As my children grow older in our large family I have come to realize that concentrating on Reading, Language Arts and Writing g with Religion is most important. Everything else can and will come along in due time but these are most important.
- Reviewed on Wednesday, January 2, 2013
- Grades Used: 1st-7th
- Dates used: 2009-2012
My family LOVES CLE. We have used their curriculum for the last 4 years for Math, Language and Reading. I started my middle son on CLE in 1st grade and my oldest started in 4th and is now in 7th. The curriculum is very comprehensive and practical. It uses the spiral method for each subject and does a great job giving plenty of review for new and old lessons.
The Learning to Read program is an excellent Phonics program and did a great job with my 2nd son learning how to read. I intend to use it again with my youngest next fall.
I like that the lessons/quizzes and tests are easy to grade. I also really like that the worktexts are very inexpensive compared to other textbook curriculum but just as advanced as Saxon or A Beka. Yes, the worktexts are consumable but at less than $35/yr/student that is reasonable.
We have used their science and history for 1st and 4th grade. While very comprehensive and thorough I did not continue using them simply because it was hard for my boys to have workbooks for all subject so we mixed it up and went with SOS to give them a little more interaction. The Sunlight versions are better than the non-Sunlight and to my knowledge the science does not have the Sunlight from 4th up - which makes it a lot more difficult to grade and does not have easy breaks in the lessons like the Sunlight version does.
I highly recommend CLE for 8th grade and under and am very pleased to have a curriculum that I don't have to "teach" but offers excellent support for grading. I do recommend the teachers manual because of the additional tests, but it is not necessary for older grades if you have an answer key.