Explode the Code

Explode the Code (ETC) is a reading program that is both simple and wonderfully effective. It is also one of the programs we use at the Buck Academy.

We’ve tried Explode the Code (ETC) online before a few times, but I never made it an actual part of the curriculum before. I only considered it to be an educational game for them to play.

A few months ago, ETC showed up on the Homeschool Buyers Co-Op for 40% off, and I couldn’t resist giving their program another try. This time, I made it a part of our official curriculum mix! I expect the kids to complete 10 badges (lesson drills) a day. If they focus, this only take about 10-15 min.

The incredible thing I’ve discovered is that the teacher reports give you tons of detail and ideas on what to do to help reinforce the concepts that your student is struggling with! The helps I use most often are the corresponding lessons in the ETC workbooks to use. The workbooks are just under $10 each new, and I have most of the collection now. My youngest (6 yo) works through all the lessons in the workbooks with the online version being the reinforcement. My older two (7 & 8 yo) work the online lessons with a few select lessons from the workbooks for reinforcement. The workbook lessons they are assigned depends on the reports I get from the teacher-side of ETC online.

Results (so far):

  • My 7 yo can read very well already. Throughout this past month and a half, his reading and spelling have improved quite a bit. When reading out-loud, his reading goes along much smoother.
  • My 8 yo and 6 yo have been struggling to learn to read. The best testament to how well this program has been working is when my 8 yo started reading the street signs to me! He’s reading instructions in his math books, and he’s even reading his Minecraft books a little bit on his own now too. I’m so excited!
  • My 6 yo hasn’t made the same progress, but I’m not discouraged. Perhaps she needs a different reading program entirely… or the right motivation to put in a real effort. Time will tell.

I love ETC, and the kids love it too. They find it hilarious that the workbooks track so well with the online program. I find it awesome. To find out more about ETC, check out their website.

*I am not an ETC affiliate or anything of that sort. I get nothing for sharing this post or their link.

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