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I was wondering where i should start my kids on the explode the code series. I have a 1st grader and a 3rd grader. Also can I use the program for my 4 year old he is in the process of learning his abc's and letter sound now.
For the 4 year old, I'd start with the earlier series. There are 3 workbooks: Get Ready for the Code, Get Set for the Code, and Go for the Code. The regular workbooks range from kinder to 4th (generally). They're not "graded" per se, but you would generally expect a K'er to start with book one, and a 5th grader to not need them at all. The very first book starts with CVC words (CVC means consonent, short vowel, consonent ... like hat or pop or dug). They move on to blends, long vowels, and more irregular sounds from there. The descriptions of each book will likely tell you where you need to start. You CAN get a placement test from EPS, but I don't recommend it at all. The placement test is $20, but a workbook is only about $8. If you're off by a level, you can either review (if it's too low), save it for a younger child, or save it for later (if it's too advanced).
Another thing you should note is that books 1-6 of the regular series have optional half-level books. Those are for extra practice, and only if necessary. If you're working through book 3 and feel your child isn't ready for book 4, get book 3.5. If you're working through 3 and all's going well, jump to book 4.
You can find descriptions of what's in each book here: SS—LI Phonics & Word Study Explode The Code Click the tab for the workbooks. (The default tab is the online version.) Scroll down, click on a book, and it'll pop up the info for that book with the sounds covered in it.