We made our first ever big mid-year curriculum switch. After working through Horizons K Math and the first book of Horizons 1, I made the decision to switch Little Bug over to Christian Light Education Math.
I absolutely love the systematic layout of each lesson. There is the counting and review time, then the workbook time and after that, flash cards with a speed drill followed by independent work time. At first, it might seem like these lessons are long and drawn out compared to the front and back page of a Horizons math worksheet, but each component of the CLE math lessons move quickly. The variety of daily activities makes the lessons more interesting than just working the front and back of a worksheet every day!
Here is an inside peek into Christian Light Education Level 100 Math and all the components that work together to make this math curriculum so thorough and engaging!
This is what I purchased for Christian Light Education Level 100 Math: LightUnit Set (101-110), Math 101-105 Teacher’s Guide, Math 106-110 Teacher’s Guide, My Counting Book, Counting Chart, Addition and Subtraction Flash Cards and the Student Clock (with gears).
This post is going to walk through Lesson 38. This is the Teacher’s Guide for the first five (of 10) LightUnits:
Each lesson begins with a list of New Skills/Concepts that will be taught in that lesson. For Lesson 38, you will be teaching how to read a number line with a scale of fives and how to draw a triangle by connecting points. Your child will also begin memorizing 4-4=0 and 4-0=4.
Next, you will see in the Teacher’s Guide a list of things to prepare before teaching the lesson. This is an open-and-go curriculum, so the class preparation takes under five minutes. It will have you gather the coins needed for the Money Cup (more on this later), it will have you get the Fact Card ready for the day and it will tell you where to move any fact cards that need to be moved (more on this later, too!).
Meet With Students
- Counting – The lesson begins with counting practice. Your child will count by 5’s to the number 75 and from 9-28. The Counting Chart can assist them in this task.
- My Counting Book Activities – The My Counting Book guides children in a written counting experience from 1 to 1,000. Beginning in Lesson 48, your child will write a sequence of 10 numbers each day all the way to 1,000 by the end of Level 100!
- Review – Because this is a spiral curriculum, there is a list of concepts and skills to quickly review. Lesson 38 has the child reviewing the value and characteristics of a nickel and what congruent means. These are all concepts and skills taught in previous lessons.
Begin LightUnit Activities
After the counting exercises and the review, it is time for your child to pull out their LightUnit! This is LightUnit 102 and includes Lessons 21-40:
- Title Bar – The lesson begins with a Title Bar activity. The answer to the Title Bar activity always corresponds to the lesson number. For lesson 38, there were 3 groups of 10 and 8 ones which equals 38.
- Lesson – After the Title Bar Activity it is time to introduce the new facts. The child will copy the new facts. Then, there is a story problem for you to read aloud to your child. They write the math fact that tells the story in their book. After this, the lesson continues with specific instructions on what to teach and do for each section. The Teacher’s Guide tells you exactly what to teach and what you say to your child is even in bold so it stands out in the guide.
Drill Flash Cards – After the lesson, it is time to drill flash cards with your child. Memorization of the basic addition and subtraction math facts was missing in the other math curriculum we used before finding CLE. The math flash cards are organized in a genius flash-card system with 8 dividers: Unused facts, New Facts, Once A Day and a divider for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The Teacher’s Guide tells you explicitly where to move the cards. Follow the directions completely and this system will work!
Administer Speed Drill – There is a quick 1 minute Speed Drill for each lesson. Set a timer and have your child complete as many problems as they can in 1 minute. There is a box to write how many problems were answered correctly in the 1 minute. I love the emphasize CLE puts on these basic facts. It is so important children learn these facts in the early years so that when they reach higher level math, they are not having to still use a ton of brain power just to figure out basic math. Each Speed Drill takes up only half of one sheet of paper.
Explain and assign I Can Do This – Once basic math practice is complete it is time to assign your child their independent math work. This section is called “I Can Do This”. I love that positive words are being used every day to tell the child that, yes, you can do this! Go over each section with your child and then let them complete everything on their own. After they are finished, you can check their work and then go over anything they answered incorrectly.
The first part of I Can Do This in Lesson 38:
The second part of I Can Do This in Lesson 38:
Money Cup – This is another genius component of CLE Math! When your child comes across the cup symbol in their LightUnit, they know it is time to get their Money Cup and count the coins. There is something about being able to pour those real coins out on to the table and count them one-by-one that makes counting money like this so much better than trying to count coins that are drawn on a math worksheet.
Tests and Quizzes – There are 2 quizzes and 1 test per LightUnit.
A sample of a quiz in LightUnit 103:
Test in LightUnit 103:
I started Little Bug in LightUnit 102 (second book). It has been very easy for her but I wanted it to be easy as we transitioned from one math curriculum to another. CLE Math picks up in LightUnit 103, which we will be starting next week. I believe this change will continue to be a positive change for Little Bug.