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Old 04-28-2011, 08:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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After hearing good things about Explode the Code, I picked up a few random Explode the Code books from our local Half Price Books. I've been trying to figure out how they work, since the workbooks themselves aren't super self-explanatory, but the Explode the Code website is also less than helpful. Are there JUST the workbooks, and the child just works their way through them? Is there some sort of accompanying text for parents that I need to go find if we're going to use this? Thanks.
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:22 AM
 
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Yes, there is a manual that goes with it.You can order it through their website. I don't remember what it cost, but it was less than $10.

 

For the most part they do work their way through the books, but I don't think it would go very well without the teacher manual.


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Old 04-28-2011, 12:00 PM
 
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i've use all of the explode the code books with my daughter (get ready, get set, go for the code & books 1-8). the only ones we didn't get into were the beyond books.  we never bought the 1/2 books or the teacher manuals. i felt they were self explanatory, and i saw no need for the TM's or 1/2 books.  at the end of each book there is a test that would require the TM, but otherwise we used them successfully without any other resources.  we never did the test, as i knew whether not my child had retained the information.  if you do buy a TM, i would invest in one only (buy used at amazon or homeschool classifieds). once you get moving with the program though, i imagine you'll get a good feel for it & won't need the TM either.smile.gif


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Old 04-28-2011, 02:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, thanks both for the information. How do I know where to start my kid in this series without taking the $20 placement exam? I have 2 and 3-1/2. Finally found the teeny tiny link on Explode the Code's website to where you can buy their books to discover that the 1/2s are really for extra retention work, but the 3-1/2 I have seems like it might be too easy for my son come fall. Assuming I can't just happen to find the rest of the series used, I'll be looking at buying new, and sight unseen...

Their online program looks intriguing, but $65? wow.
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Old 04-28-2011, 02:48 PM
 
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Here's what you need to do to buy a cheap one year's subscription to Explode the Code online: go sign up at the Homeschool Buyer's Coop and you can get it through them for $35!  I found this out when I called Explode the Code to see if they had a homeschooling discount; they referred me to this online co-op.  I read the small print pretty carefully and there appears to be no catch and no obligation to buy anything.  We've been "members" for almost a month now and so far so good (meaning, there haven't been any weird charges to my credit card or anything!).  The only thing to know is that you sign up for a year's subscription, but the 'year' actually started when the co-op bought all the licenses (which was mid-March). 

 

Anyhow, I decided to try ETC because my ds1 was getting really lazy with his reading (guessing when he should've been sounding out unfamiliar words).  Even though he's reading pretty well these days (Easy Reader 2-3ish) I honestly think the ETC first level has been good for him.  He's gone through the first level really fast, but I feel like it's been a good review of the basic vowel sounds.  I think he'd almost lost sight of the fact that say, the 'a' in 'cat' actually has a sound associated with it!  Anyhow, Ds likes to do activities on the computer so he doesn't at all mind doing a few units of ETC every day. 

 

Oh, and the other good thing about this program is that ds can do it by himself!  Very helpful for when you're trying to work with multiple kids at the same time. 


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Old 04-28-2011, 05:46 PM
 
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We've used ETC from ABC all the way up to 8. We are on the last book 8 this month. The only time we used a 1/2 book was for Book 4, which covered multiple syllable words which intimidated my 5-year old at the time. We came back to the 4 1/2 book after book 6 and it was much easier to tackle then.

 

Do you have a phonics program? Most people don't use ETC as a main program. They use some sort of phonics reading program and use ETC as review/reinforcement. You don't need the teacher's guides. I got them and never use them. However, if you did use ETC as a stand-alone program, you'd probably get more use out of them. I haven't seen a need to use them since we use other programs for phonics/spelling, but they do look like they have a few helpful tips inside.


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Old 04-29-2011, 08:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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whoo hoo. I've looked at the homeschool buyer's co-op before, but I just went and joined and signed up for the online version.

No, we don't have any sort of other "program," which makes me giggle a bit because we don't have any sort of "program" for anything. This will be our first structured anything.
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Old 04-29-2011, 08:15 PM
 
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I agree that it isn't a stand-alone program... definitely good that was pointed out.  Is the online program phonics? If yes, you could use that in conjunction with the books and have a complete set-up!smile.gif


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Old 04-30-2011, 08:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I'm comfortable saying that we'll use it in conjunction with our existing phonics program, which consists of utilizing a variety of resources, lol.
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