Creating Secret Codes

You and your kids will have a blast making up your own secret code and deciphering each other’s messages. You might even want to help each child come up with his or her own code to keep messages private. The secret code can be as simple or complex as your child wishes. If you’re using unique symbols, these should be simple to recreate and easy to tell apart from one another.

One really simple code that will work well for small children, is giving each letter a number. You can start with A, making it number one and proceed in numerical order until you reach Z. For a little twist, start with Z as number one and work your backwards.

Another simple method for smaller children is to decide on an item that starts with each letter. For example, A is for apple. Make a master sheet for the code to help your child remember which item stands for which letter. Write or type the letters out in rows with the symbol for each letter directly beneath it.

Master Sheet for Secret Code

Older kids may come up with their own ideas, and may create some pretty tough secret codes using intricate simples, lines, boxes, or anything else. You can also make a code by numbering each letter by twos, threes, fives, or any number. For example, if you’re numbering by threes, A = three, B = six, C = nine, D = twelve. The bigger the number you count by, the trickier the code will be.

Make sure children remember to use a dash between each number or symbol so you know where one letter stops and another begins. They should also leave a space between full words.

Your kids will have a lot of fun making up messages, and trying to crack their brother and sisters’ codes. If one does crack another’s code, start all over, making it a bit tougher to figure out.