Many students enter school at a young age with the ability to read and even more learn to read with typical phonics instruction and support. However, there is a population of students who need additional intense, explicit and systematic phonics instruction to crack the code of our English lexicon and if they do not receive it, they fall behind their peers. Educators who work with older, struggling students find that the available literacy resources were developed for young readers and more mature students are often embarrassed to engage in the materials that were created for young children and so they avoid them. Crack the Code was created for more mature students who need to learn the code of our English Lexicon.

Several of my phonics students in a college level phonics course I teach agreed to work with youth at a Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) for their field placement. As their instructor, I visited the JDC and observed one of my students working with a youth that was high school age but was assessed at the letter-name alphabetic stage of word learning. My student returned to campus and asked me about phonics resources that would be appealing to older students. After much research we could not find any appropriate resources for older students that needed systematic phonics instruction. I then decided to create phonics resources that are appealing to older students. Thus, Crack the Code was created.

Crack the Code is a research based, best practice phonics resource designed for students to work independently on specific letter patterns, sight words and phonics lessons. Within Crack the Code there are several hours of engaging content that will support students in developing the necessary foundation to become a skilled reader.

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