Christian Light Pub. (CLE) Curriculum thoughts?

We are a family on a VERY tight budget, so buying curriculum and being able to afford it is always in the back of our minds. I see a lot of people mention how they like CLE curriculum. I check it out often and obviously the LOW cost is what appeals to me. Right now we are using All About Reading/Spelling and Singapore. I am sure we will stay with Singapore for math, since it is low in price, but I’m just not so sure we will be able to stick with AAR/S this next year due to cost. How do people enjoy the curriculum when it comes to the reading/spelling programs? Also bible, social studies/history and science would also be in the mix in the next year or 2. Our daughter is at a mix of Kindergarten/1st grade level.

We started with CLE-Learning to Read. Did a great job with phonics, and reading. Loved the gentleness of it. However, a lot of work pages. We split up several lessons, so as not to be overwhelming.
CLE-Learning to read transitions into the CLE-I Wonder Reading for the rest of the first grade year. We are currently in it, and love it.
CLE-Language Arts runs throughout the first grade year. Spelling is gentle covering 12 words over a 3 week period. I anticipate 2nd grade to have more spelling words. I have also looked into supplementing the spelling because of a lot of comments I have read. I am leaning towards Evan-Moor.
CLE-Social Studies very gentle, and not as challenging as I would have liked. Will try Rod and Staff for SS next year.
CLE-Science we did not purchase.
CLE-Mathematics is a very spiraled math. It reviews a lot. So everyday we do some of her math orally, so as not to tire her out, and give her a different way of relating to it.
When you get into CLE expect a lot of light units. It drove me a bit crazy, but our daughter has really thrived. I do try to give her a break from the light units by having some other supplements on hand. It breaks up the monotony.
CLE-Bible is very nice too. Our daughter really loves this program.
I really love, love the CLE Teacher’s Manuals. I relied on them heavily at first, but then found my footing and adapted them to our day as needed. Lot’s of good information in there.

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I have used CLE for Reading, Language and Math.
I have stuck with their Math program and so far have no plans to change it because it’s working.
Learning to Read
. Had the children reading very quickly without overwhelming them
. Easy to teach
. Inexpensive

Learning to Read
. Takes a long time to teach each day with the flash cards etc…

Reading to Learn
. Solid program

CONS- Reading to Learn
. Takes a long time to teach
. Boring stories which sapped creativity (opinion)

PROS- Language
. Solid program
. Solid foundation
. Inexpensive for such a good program

CONS- Language
.Takes a long time to teach
.Takes a long time for the children to finish (This can be a pro or a con)
. Can get a little frustrating if the children do not understand a concept

General Pro Having LU’s helps with seeing how much you have accomplished and with goal setting “Let’s finish 2 LUs’ by so and so…” It gives the children a sense of pride when they are halfway through the books or when they have only 1 book left. Also on review days it’s easy to double up lessons and finish a little quicker.
I liked the program in general because it is solid but chose to switch because it wasn’t working for our family. However the Math we still love.


Thank you SO much for the wonderful insight. Our girls is okay with worksheets and many times we will switch it up a bit and do stuff on the white board. CLE I Wonder reading is probably where we would start, along with Grade 1 Language Arts, Bible and Social Studies, but fir that we may look at rod and staff as you mentioned. Math we will stick with Singapore as that seems to be working for us and science…we may just piece this next year and then move into something more the following. Thank you again SOOOOOO much for that info. It helps a lot to hear first hand experience.

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We use CLE for Bible study and my kids really enjoy it. It has interesting and easy to understand stories that are a great way to learn about God. I think that CLE isn’t flashy and bright with lots of glossy pages and pictures, but its one of those programs that you “can’t judge a book by its cover”! I think CLE is great and high quality. (I’ve heard really great things about the math and language arts books but I haven’t used them myself.)


I started using some CLE this year with my son. I was looking for some reinforcement in English grammar and a friend who was an English major told me that CLE does and excellent job with their Language Arts curriculum.

We use Sonlight as our core curriculum which is reading a lot of books and we both love it. My son also likes workbooks so I figured we would try it.

We use the CLE Reading and Language Arts. He really likes both of them. What is really nice is the sense of accomplishment he has every time he finishes a book. Since the books are small this happens often.

I also like the way the books are laid out and I like the stories in them.