about the secret codes

Secret Codes

School Version

The Secret Codes Curriculum is based on the Science of Reading and is aligned with Structured Literacy. It prevents children from experiencing reading failure and can help students learn to read who have dyslexia or are at risk for reading failure.

Students can become competent readers if the appropriate curriculum or intervention is provided. The Secret Codes is that curriculum! The reading failure rate of schools using the Secret Codes has plummeted.

The Secret Codes curriculum is based on the Science of Reading and is aligned with Structured Literacy. The Secret Codes produces readers who perform at very high levels. All students will benefit from using the Secret Codes. Students who are at risk for reading failure will become competent readers.

A detective ant helping young dyslexic children to read

Phonological & Phonemic Awareness

Students will develop the skills to identify oral language.

Students will understand the relationship between sounds and symbols.

Students will listen for beginning, middle, and ending sounds in a word.

Students will learn to decode words into sounds.

Students will learn to synthesize (blend) sounds into words.


Students will comprehend what they are reading.

Students will learn about punctuation (periods, question marks, and exclamation points).

Students will focus on phonological and phonemic skills.

Students will use their decoding skills to read words. 

Students will to read sentences. 

Students will to read paragraphs.


Students will improve their vocabulary skills.

Students will understand spoken directions, act upon the requests, and complete tasks.

Students will learn about various aspects of language.


Students will write upper and lowercase letters in the correct form and direction.

Students will learn spelling strategies.

Students will learn to write words with correct spacing.

Students will learn to write sentences with correct spacing.

Students will learn to write paragraphs.

Punctuation Symbols

Students will learn how and when to use a period.

Students will learn how and when to use a question mark.

Students will learn how and when to use an exclamation point.

Small Groups

The small groups will help students develop and improve motor skills, visual learning skills, and creative thinking.

Students will learn to work well with others.

Parent Involvement

Newsletters are sent home to parents so that they know what their child is learning.

The Homework Checklist encourages parental involvement.

Secret Codes provides fun learning games for the family to play to help the child with homework.

Assessment Testing

There are opportunities to assess student learning at the beginning, middle, and end of the school year (optional).
The assessments help to track learning, so that areas that might need to be improved are identified.


The introduction provides background information concerning the English Writing System, the development of speech, language and reading, explanation of reading failure and the research that resulted in the development of the curriculum. The introduction also provides specific information how the Secret Codes curriculum works.

Manipulative Supply List

A supply list for each chapter is presented in the Teacher’s Guide so that teachers can prepare the materials for each week’s activities.

Homework Newsletters

Homework Newsletters are provided that explain what students are learning for each chapter with an explanation of each activities’ homework assignment.

Homework Checklist (Optional)

The Homework Checklist is located on the back of each newsletter. Parents sign and return the checklist.

Test Forms

Test forms are provided to evaluate students progress. The evaluations also help identify any students who might be struggling
with reading. The test forms are optional. Testing can be done at the beginning, middle, and end of the
school year.

Report Card

Report cards are designed to evaluate student progress every 9 weeks. The report cards cover reading, writing, homework, sounds, and letter names. The report cards are provided as an optional tool for teachers.

Small Group Activities

Small group activity's consist of educational games designed to provide additional time on task for each activity. The games are fun and engaging for the students. These games (referred to as “Rounds”) are part of each activity, providing the learning game that best fits the
lesson. The games give the students an opportunity to learn while moving around the room and having fun.

The Worksheet Manual contains all of the worksheets for the Secret Codes curriculum and can be copied for use with your students.


The units provide specific instructions regarding how to proceed with each activity. This information contains estimates of the length of whole-class instruction, how to efficiently produce each sound, what materials are needed for that lesson, and details regarding the activity.

The activities are scripted, which is ideal for new teachers or teachers who are not familiar with the Science of Reading. However, the activities are repetitive by design so teachers become accustomed to the nature of the script quickly. Once the teacher has mastered the gist of the curriculum and each activity within it, a strict adherence to the script, word by word, is not necessary. 

Review Days

On the last day of each chapter, teachers have the opportunity to review with the students what was learned during
the chapter. Review days are also a good time for new students or students who have been absent to catch up. Review activities are included in the Teacher's Guide and review time should be fun for both the teacher and the students.

All of the Teacher Cards are laminated and durable. It is expected that the original Teacher Cards will be used for many years.

Teacher Picture Cards

There are 61 Picture Cards. The Picture Cards are attractive and engaging and provide the opportunity for students to see pictures that contain the sound or phoneme that is being presented for that activity.

Teacher Letter Cards

There are 44 Letter Cards depicting a letter that will be associated with the sound or sounds that it represents. The Letter Cards also have information regarding how to write the letter.

Teacher Word Cards

There are 155 Word Cards. As more sound-letter correspondences are learned, new words will be able to be decoded, read and spelled. The Word Cards are used to help teach students these skills.

Teacher Sentence Cards

There are 82 Sentence Cards that will teach the students how to read and write sentences. Sentence Cards help to teach decoding, reading, capitalization, punctuation and comprehension.

Teacher Paragraph Cards

There are 4 Paragraph Cards that will teach students how to read paragraphs.

Alphabet Animal Cards

There are 26 different Alphabet Animal Cards that are to be used when teaching letter names. The Alphabet Animal Cards represent an alphabetic letter and the character associated with that letter. A message to the students is read to the students that was written by the letter’s character regarding interesting facts about that animal.

All of the Student Cards are laminated and durable. It is expected that the same Student Cards will be used for many years.

Student Classroom Cards

There are 44 Student Classroom Cards. After each lesson, each student receives a card with the letter representing the sound that he or she learned for that day. They will use these cards in the classroom to help them remember the sounds associated with the letters and for other activities including spelling.

Student Take-Home Letter Cards

There are 44 Student Take-Home Letter Cards that the students collect though the year and are used for homework. Students can write on the cards with dry-erase markers, which students find very exciting. Parents enjoy the opportunity to work with their children as well.

Student Word Cards

There are 52 Student Word Cards. These word cards are comprised of the words that were decoded and read during that day’s activity.

Student  Sentence Cards

There are 23 Student Sentence Cards. These cards are used so that students can practice reading and writing sentences. The Student Sentence Cards include punctuation and capitalization.

Student Paragraph Cards

There is one Student Paragraph Card. Students use this card to practice reading a paragraph.

Welcome to the creative and fun way of teaching students how to write! Rather than students following arrows on letters to learn how to write letters, students will follow different colored ants. Students will love writing on the dry erase cards and following the ants making this method fun and simple to understand.

The Secret Codes has been used as a kindergarten reading curriculum and as an intervention for older students who have struggled to learn to read, both with great success.

The pricing for the teacher materials is $864.04 per classroom and the pricing for the student materials is $62.00 per student. For a classroom of 25 students the cost would be $2,655.44 which includes shipping.