Who is the author of CodeBreakers® and what is their experience?
CodeBreakers® has been developed over the past 10 years by Georgina Smith, who is an experienced dyslexia tutor and assessor. Georgina is a member of PATOSS and has AMBDA status from the British Dyslexia Association upon graduation from MMU.
Georgina has run an independent practice for over 10 years working with students of all ages referred by their family and through both mainstream and non-mainstream schools. Georgina has provided inset training to schools and is the co-founder of SEN Jigsaw Conference.
As members of her family have struggled with dyslexia over the years, she is passionate about supporting children and adults with dyslexia, ensuring they maximise their potential and develop literacy skills, to enable students to become independent, confident readers and spellers.
Georgina has completed CPD in various overlapping SEN/SPLDs and has a particular interest in Visual Processing (VPD), Auditory Processing (APD), Complex Language Difficulties, Sensory Processing (SPD), Autism (ASD), Pathological Demand (PDA), Dyspraxia and Retained Primitive Reflexes.
CodeBreakers® is a systematic synthetic phonics, multi-sensory, structured, cumulative literacy programme.
CodeBreakers® is for students with dyslexia and those who want to improve literacy skills.
Which age group?
The programme is aimed at students of all ages and abilities from 5 yrs to post 16.
CodeBreakers® maintains the interest of primary school students as the ‘tutor’ can include learning through play.
CodeBreakers® is excellent for secondary school students and post 16 students, its plain text format without the pictures, removes the stigma often attached to developing literacy skills.
CodeBreakers® is also used with school leavers in FE and apprenticeships. It is also successful with adults wanting to return to study.
Who can deliver CodeBreakers®?
CodeBreakers® has been designed to enable teachers or T.A.s to deliver it. It is highly structured and provides all worksheets, answers and flashcards.
The Instructor’s Manual is also provided, so that the ‘tutor’ is aware of how to best complete the worksheet or game, which principles it develops and how to make the most of the multi-sensory experience, to ensure that information is stored and retrieved in a structured way, to develop independent learners.
How much time per week do we need to spend practising CodeBreakers® at school?
Work with CodeBreakers® as little or often as you wish. You can repeat games on a daily basis if you wish to reinforce learning.
Overall, we would recommend 90 mins on average to complete a workbook but we would strongly recommend that this is not completed in one day. Students need time to absorb information. Think quality not quantity. Practice 2-3 times a week for 20-30 mins, CodeBreakers® is great for 1:1 or group intervention programmes.
CodeBreakers® is all about taking things at the student pace. Over learning is the key to learning and retaining information.
Will my student engage with CodeBreakers® programme?
Students have used this programme for 1:1 tuition and have repeatedly attended lessons and had fun! There are lots of games to engage younger students.
The programme can be adapted for older students, with less emphasis on play, although even our older students love a game of bingo! As there are no pictures, this removes the stigma of ‘additional support’ which stops some older students engaging in some programmes.
Students who use CodeBreakers® can quickly identify their own learning and success. They enjoy learning, receive immediate feedback and can be found to intrinsically motivate themselves. Students become self-assured and understand how to complete workbooks. They quickly become independent learners.
CodeBreakers® has been used in EBD settings and reported as ‘keeping students engaged for longer’.
Is there any evidence that CodeBreakers® works?
In addition to principles of systematic synthetic phonics, delivered in a structured a cumulative way, with multi-sensory techniques being taught during my training,
CodeBreakers® conducted a pilot study in schools. September 2018 saw the start of the first project. TAs were trained to deliver CodeBreakers® 1:1 to students in primary schools up to age 11. The midterm results, after just 16-20 weeks of intervention (16-20 hrs), saw 60% of students increase reading and spelling single word accuracy by 32%. 75% of students could decode nonwords and increased ability by up to 38%, showing they were no longer reliant on whole word recognition.
September 2019 saw the start of a year 2 project for some schools, now working in small groups.
Is CodeBreakers® successful?
Each workbook is structured and cumulative which means that students are only asked to read and spell sounds they have discovered at previous levels. Therefore, they have a positive experience completing each workbook.
The spelling rules and sounds are provided with every workbook, to enable a full understanding of the sound and how to select the correct spelling pattern. Each chunk of sound is also isolated to enable students to understand how to identify and say a chunk of sound.
The sound presentation gives a step-by-step guide to each sound, which is mapped to each book in the series.
Our school isn’t in mainstream, is CodeBreakers® suitable?
CodeBreakers® has been used with students who have dyslexia, students without dyslexia, students who attend mainstream school, students who do not attend mainstream school and students with additional and complex SPLDs.
Due to the multi-sensory approach, this ensures that students have the best opportunity of retaining the information.
CodeBreakers® has been used with children of all ages who have Global Development Delay, Autism, Dyspraxia, ADHD, Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), receptive language difficulties, audio and visual processing difficulties. The great thing is, CodeBreakers® works at their pace and gives lots of opportunity for over learning.
Will it stick?
The principles behind CodeBreakers® are;
- A multi-sensory programme
- Learning is delivered in a structured and cumulative way
- There are ample opportunities for over learning
- Language and vocabulary work help to provide semantic representation
These principles ensure that students will store and retrieve information effectively and become independent readers and spellers, not reliant on whole word recognition.
There are many synthetic phonics programmes available, however, I firmly believe the success of the programme is in the delivery too. The person delivering needs to understand the principles of what they are delivering and maintain the continuity and standard of delivery which makes CodeBreakers® successful.
My Dyslexia Tutor is a new intervention. Each student will receive a login and access to their own workbook and tutorial video. This means LSA or TAs will only need a supporting role rather than teaching.
My student has visual processing difficulties, does CodeBreakers® help?
CodeBreakers® is written in a dyslexia-friendly font and can be printed on a specific colour paper to help reduce visual stress and inaccuracy when reading.
My student has difficulty with phonics and struggles to learn phonics, does CodeBreakers® help?
CodeBreakers® works on phonics. In addition, it also provides significant opportunity for over learning which is often missed. CodeBreakers® also works on a logical method, enabling students to understand where to use patterns in spelling and understand how letters change sound, in relation to other letters when reading and spelling.
My student has not had a positive experience of learning to read and spell and finds it difficult to engage in learning, does the programme help?
CodeBreakers® builds student confidence and keeps students of all ages engaged. CodeBreakers® has bite-sized worksheets and tasks are quickly completed with immediate feedback.
The consistent layout of the workbooks means your student will begin to anticipate how to complete the workbooks, as a student works solely on one sound/pattern, they can begin to build their skills using the pattern/sound and have a positive experience.
CodeBreakers® workbooks constantly swap between visual, auditory, analytical, discovery, spelling, reading, writing and games tasks, ensuring when learning, different parts of the brain are stimulated, this ensures the sound/pattern is learned and consolidated
My students struggle to read whole words, will CodeBreakers® help?
Students who have followed CodeBreakers® don’t simply learn whole word recognition of high-frequency words, they develop knowledge of words through the pattern, etymology and morphology. Students are able to analyse sounds and the patterns of letters which make sounds, to apply logic and transfer this knowledge to other, less familiar words. This enables students to access a wider word bank by transferring knowledge to unfamiliar words.
My student struggles each week to recall words in spelling tests, how will CodeBreakers® work?
Traditionally students are asked to learn 10 spellings per week from the National Curriculum. It makes it simpler if they can be grouped into words which have the same pattern to reduce the number of patterns they need to recall. Usually, students are taught with “Look, say, cover” methods. Students are essentially recalling what the whole word looks like, rather than understanding each ‘component part’ of a word and how a word is made up of sounds, syllables and possibly suffixes. Students using CodeBreakers® will learn how to encode words, sound out words and make a written response for each sound.
Do I need additional resources?
Unless you want to use your own games to add to the play tasks, resources are included. The pack includes printable flashcards and games. You will need a set of wooden letters to build words, a dice for games, coloured pens and paper and card for printing workbooks and games.
Who can buy CodeBreakers®?
CodeBreakers® is available as a School Edition, you may also like to tell parents about the Home Edition.
Why should schools buy CodeBreakers®?
Students of all ages enjoy using CodeBreakers®.
The structured workbooks quickly build confidence as students become assured, knowing how to complete workbooks and are quickly able to become independent learners. Students are able to successfully complete workbooks with instant positive feedback provided both intrinsically and extrinsically.
The highly structured programme provides a clear scheme of work for students, which can easily transfer to ILP/IEP targets, Pupil Passports/Plans, reducing planning time.
Schools can opt for the Lesson Plan Pack, which maps all workbooks to prepared lessons, again reducing planning time.
Answers to workbooks are provided on each page, providing instant feedback and reducing marking time.
CodeBreakers® is mapped to the National Curriculum, so it’s easy to track and find the workbook to use to target a specific sound/pattern.
CodeBreakers® has been designed to allow staff at all levels to deliver the programme without specific dyslexia training. The introduction of My Dyslexia Tutor means you can have a virtual Dyslexia teacher in your classroom.
CodeBreakers® workbooks can be printed and sent home for parents to use as homework.
The FREE student progress tracker enables targets to be set, progress to be analysed on a timeline and provides evidence of progress for funding and OFSTED at the click of a button.
How can I monitor progress?
The FREE Student Progress Tracker is provided for ‘tutors’ to enter completion dates of each workbook, individual to each student.
You will also receive baseline tests with parallel testing forms for reading and spelling, which do not require any preliminary qualifications to use. The parallel forms are quick to complete and can be used at 6-month intervals to track progress.
Is CodeBreakers® for 1:1 or group work?
You can use CodeBreakers® for both 1:1 and group work if students are working on the same workbook. The games are great played as a group and extra sheets can be printed where required if there are more than two players.
Not all staff delivering support are dyslexia trained, can they use CodeBreakers®?
If you wish to buy just the licence and print workbooks, an Instructor’s Manual is provided with all the information on how to successfully deliver the CodeBreakers® programme and therefore requires very little staff training. The additional Lesson Plan can also provide prompts for ‘tutors’ and a structured method to record each task.
The FREE Instructor’s Manual discusses the principles of the programme and how to successfully deliver the multi-sensory programme for each task in the workbook.
All the preparation has been completed, so there is no need to find resources from various programmes and prepare a lesson. Each workbook will offer regular worksheets, which enables staff to gain confidence in how to deliver the programme and students are encouraged by their success, due to the familiarity of the work.
If your school or training provision is looking for a synthetic phonics programme, which is multi-sensory, cumulative and structured, CodeBreakers® programme is for you!
Staff training can be provided. Please visit the shop and add this to your basket.
Alternatively, why not try My Dyslexia Tutor. This option enables students to have an individual login, access to their workbook and tutorial video and fun animated explainer video. Staff will be needed to support and check progress but not teach.
CodeBreakers® is suitable for students with dyslexia and those looking to boost literacy skills.
How can you buy it?
Go to our ‘Shop’ page
What equipment will I need to use CodeBreakers®?
You will need access to a printer. If buying a licence this will be provided on a memory stick. Adobe Reader to read/open PDF documents. Excel is required to access the Student Progress.
Still not sure if CodeBreakers® is for your school?
Click here if you would like to request a demonstration for your school.
Would you like to receive a discount by being a CodeBreakers® Champion?
Contact us to learn how to receive a discount for your school.
Is there funding for CodeBreakers®
As CodeBreakers® can be used as an intervention programme to raise literacy attainment levels of learners with many learning difficulties and to boost literacy for all students, it’s an excellent choice for Pupil Premium.
Schools will be able to evidence and track progress through the programme for every student enrolled on CodeBreakers®. The parallel baseline tests will also allow progress to be measured.
Overall CodeBreakers® will develop confident and independent learners, an enjoyment of learning and improved literacy skills.
Do you have a question we haven’t answered?
Click here to contact us