edHelper.com
World War II
The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1



The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.79

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    bomba, cipher, cryptography, encrypting, krip, own-a, poland, swapping, ticking, unbreakable, dispatches, mastery, decode, wartime, top-secret, battlefield
     content words:    In World War II, Marian Rejewski, MAR-yawn Ray-EFF-ski


Print The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1
     Print The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1  (font options, pick words for additional puzzles, and more)


Quickly Print - PDF format
     Quickly Print: PDF (2 columns per page)

     Quickly Print: PDF (full page)


Quickly Print - HTML format
     Quickly Print: HTML


Proofreading Activity
     Print a proofreading activity


Feedback on The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1
     Leave your feedback on The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1  (use this link if you found an error in the story)



The Secret of the Code Breakers, Part 1
By Toni Lee Robinson
  

1     Spies, codes, secret back rooms - it all sounds like a thriller movie plot. In wartime, however, secrets can be very important. Top secret plans must be relayed to troops in the field. Ships, planes, and the like must all be quietly sent where they are needed. In World War II, contact was often made by radio. Telegraph and hand delivery were also used.
 
2     These messages, of course, could fall into enemy hands (or ears). Each side used codes to keep its plans secret. Most of the codes were ciphers. A cipher disguises the letters in the real message. This is done by swapping numbers or other letters for the real letters. Figures that mean nothing can be thrown in to hide the message even more. In the end, the message looks like a jumble of nonsense. To decode it, a person has to know the secret key.
 
3     Figuring out how to read code without having the key is called breaking the code. The science of codes and code breaking is called cryptography (krip-TOG-ra-fee). It is a war all its ownï┐Ża war of wits. It usually takes place far from the battlefield. It was, however, one of the main battles of WWII.
 
4     First, each side tried to come up with an unbreakable code. The Nazis used a machine to make their ciphers. It was called Enigma (en-IGG-muh). The word means puzzle. The Enigma device looked like an old-fashioned typewriter in a box. It had a keyboard. It also had three to five wheels, or rotors. The letters of the alphabet circled around the edge of each rotor. Some machines had a plug board in the front as well. The board sprouted wires that could switch letters on the keyboard electronically.
 
5     Encrypting (putting a message into code) was easy with Enigma. The operator typed the real words on the keyboard. As each key was struck, the rotors turned. One rotor substituted a letter for each letter typed. How far did the rotor turn? Which letter of which rotor was subbed for the real letter? That all depended on how the operator had set the machine. The settings for each day were given to operators by those in charge. If the machine had a plug board, even more settings were possible. The number of letter combinations, even in one message, was dizzying.

Paragraphs 6 to 12:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable



Weekly Reading Books

          Create Weekly Reading Books

Prepare for an entire week at once!


World War II
             World War II


Social Studies
             Social Studies


    United States History and Theme Units  
 
    American Government  
 
    Ancient America  
 
    Ancient China  
 
    Ancient Egypt  
 
    Ancient Greece  
 
    Ancient India  
 
    Ancient Mesopotamia  
 
    Ancient Rome  
 
    Biographies  
 
    Canadian Theme Unit  
 
    Country Theme Units  
 
    Crime and Terrorism  
 
    Economics  
 
    European History: 1600s-1800s  
 
 
    Explorers  
 
    Famous Educators  
 
    Geography  
 
    Grades 2-3 Social Studies Wendy's World Series  
 
    History of Books and Writing  
 
    History of Mathematics  
 
    How Can I Help?  
 
    Inventors and Inventions  
 
    Middle Ages  
 
    Renaissance  
 
    World Religion  
 
    World War I  
 
    World War II  
 
    World Wonders  
 


United States
             United States


    American Government  
 
    Black History and Blacks in U.S. History  
 
    Children in History  
 
    Government Careers  
 
    Hispanic Heritage  
 
    How Can I Help?  
 
 
    Immigration  
 
    National Parks and Monuments  
 
    Native Americans  
 
    Presidents of the United States  
 
    Women's History  
 


United States History
    A Nation Divided
(1840-1861)
 
 
    A New Nation
(1776-1830)
 
 
    After the Civil War
(1865-1870)
 
 
    American Revolution  
 
    Cold War
(1947-1991)
 
 
    Colonial America (1492-1776)  
 
    Lewis and Clark
(1804-1806)
 
 
    Pearl Harbor  
 
    Spanish American War (1898)  
 
    The 1890's  
 
    The 1900's  
 
    The 1910's  
 
    The 1920's  
 
    The 1930's  
 
 
    The 1940's  
 
    The 1950's  
 
    The 1960's  
 
    The 1970's  
 
    The 1980's  
 
    The 1990's  
 
    The 2000's  
 
    The Civil War
(1861-1865)
 
 
    The Great Depression
(1929-1945)
 
 
    The United States Grows
(1865-1900)
 
 
    The War of 1812  
 
    Wild, Wild West  
 
    World War I
(1914-1918)
 
 
    World War II  
 


50 States

             Fifty States Theme Unit


Document Based Activities
      Document Based Activities


More Activities, Lesson Plans, and Worksheets


Back to School
Graphic Organizers
Alphabet Worksheets
Sight Words
Math Worksheets
Mazes
50 States
Education
Teaching

Monthly Themes
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December

Fractions
Place Value
Time and Calendar
Money
Earth Day
Solar System
Analogies
Nouns
Following Directions
Listening
Capitalization
Cursive Writing
Patterns and Sequencing
Dinosaurs
All About Me

Kindergarten
First Grade
Second Grade
Third Grade
Fourth Grade
Fifth Grade
Sixth Grade

Multiplication
Division
Main Idea
Cause and Effect
Measurement
Decimals
Rounding
Order of Operations
Verbs
Community Helpers
Adjectives
Plants
Grammar
Addition and Subtraction
Contractions
Bulletin Board Ideas
Word Searches
Crossword Puzzles
Printable Puzzles

Reading Comprehension
Reading Skills
English Language Arts





Copyright © 2017 edHelper