Code Cracker is published by Classical Academic Press and its purpose is to teach the Greek alphabet - how to recognize, write, and pronounce each letter. CAP recommends Code Cracker for first grade and up. Grace used it this year, her 8th grade year, and although the tone of the book is young and fun, she thought it was a great help and did not feel too old for it at all.
Code Cracker is a consumable workbook with a twist: it is also a mystery story. If you can crack the code (the Greek alphabet), you can solve the crime. The first mission is to figure out who stole a priceless Grecian urn from a museum. Clues are scattered among more traditional workbook activities, and part of each clue is written in Greek. The Greek alphabet is introduced right away and audio files on the CAP website can help with pronunciations.
By the end of Unit 1 the thief's identity is revealed, but the urn is still missing. The rest of the book includes eyewitness testimony (again, partially in Greek), interspersed with more workbook exercises. The exercises take you through six Greek letters at a time, a nice slow pace.
|Practicing the alphabet|
|Writing words in Greek|
|Reading words in Greek|
|More word recognition|
After studying the letters you learn about consonant blends, vowels, and diphthongs before finally solving the crime. The book ends with a short reference section, plus space for kids to write their own cypher messages, and a cypher wheel you can assemble. Grace chose not to do that, but it looks neat.
This book will be staying on her shelf for reference as she moves on to Athenaze and if anyone else wants to learn Greek, they will definitely be getting their own copy. Not exactly holding my breath for that, but you never know!