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About Explode The Code®
Grades K–4
Overview Video
Overview Video

A phonics bestseller for over 30 years, Explode The Code has helped millions of students nationwide build the essential literacy skills needed for reading success: phonological awareness, decoding, vocabulary, comprehension, fluency, and spelling. This research-based and teacher-tested program meets and exceeds “No Child Left Behind” requirements and National Reading Panel Standards.

The Explode The Code difference:
  • abundant practice and reinforcement opportunities for greater retention
  • development of comprehension skills through reading in context
  • accommodations for English Language Learners and struggling readers

Now accessible in two ways:



RtI Tiers 1, 2 & 3

Data-Driven Instruction
  • Students are constantly assessed for proficiency as the program records correct and incorrect responses, response patterns, and completion times
  • Sophisticated branching techniques adjust curriculum accordingly, ensuring that students work only on areas of need
  • Assessment zones throughout the program determine appropriate, individualized student placement
Exceptional Content
  • Time-tested Explode The Code content from Books 1–8 provides research-based, multisensory instruction best for beginning and struggling readers
  • Visual and auditory cues support student independence and vocabulary development for English Language Learners
  • Online program presents a comprehensive curriculum-—spanning Kindergarten through 4th grade
Robust Reporting
  • Online reporting system allows for real-time, detailed information at the class and school level
  • Ongoing progress monitoring includes:
    • Daily, weekly, and monthly progress reports
    • Skills mastered
    • Potential problems skills and tasks…and more
  • Provides student progress in performance categories correlated with student data on state mandated tests
Appealing User Experience
  • Game-like interface engages students to make learning fun
  • Immediate audio and visual feedback is provided for each lesson
  • Rewards system keeps students excited about progressing through the program



RtI Tiers 1 & 2

Exceptional Content
  • Time-tested Explode The Code content (from Books A, B, C, 1–8, and Beyond The Code series) provides research-based, multisensory instruction best for beginning and struggling readers
  • Reinforcement for every skill in the “½ books” series allows for extra practice
  • Consistent exercise formats with simple directions and concrete examples allow students to work and learn independently
Teacher Support
  • Teacher guides with detailed lesson plans are available for Books A, B, C, for Books 1–8, and for English Language Learner instruction
  • The Placement Test is a criterion referenced diagnostic tool to assess skills and determine appropriate placement into Explode The Code books
Preparation for Phonics
  • Books A, B, and C (Grades K–1) series includes instruction on letter formation, consonant sounds and concepts of print through visual, auditory, and kinesthetic activities
Handwriting Instruction
  • Numerous opportunities for handwriting practice within Books 1–8
  • Activities that incorporate handwriting include:
    • Tracing and copying letters
    • Copying words from a model
    • Spelling from a set of letters or from memory
    • Word building
    • Writing short answers to comprehension questions
  • Lines provided for spacing and size guidelines in early levels
Additional Comprehension Exercises
  • Beyond The Code series (Grades 2–4) includes 4 books for developing critical comprehension skills
  • Students apply phonics skills to connected text to build meaning
  • Questions that follow reading passages develop analytical and inferential thinking skills
English Language Learners Guide for Teachers
  • Lesson plans focus on vocabulary, grammar, reading, and comprehension
  • Coordinates with student books 1–3 ½
  • Includes features such as:
    • 100+ reproducible exercises
    • Classroom management tips
    • High-utility word strategies
    • Writing skills development

See more information on Explode The Code print products at