secret cypher

Top Secret Cypher – Challenge

10 / 23 / 19 / 22 / 17          24 / 7 / 10      19       11 / 23 / 21 / 10 / 23 / 12?  (Ready for a secret?)

This string of seemly random numbers actually means something!  Secret codes just like this have been used for thousands of years and are still used everywhere today.  Computer encryption anyone?

Now to go with our forensic science unit and especially with our invisible ink experiment, we give you SECRET CODE!!

 Invisible ink + secret code = super secret messages! 

For this challenge, you have to decode 5 secret messages using our Secret Message Cypher Wheel.  And we have a little bit of sneaky math fun thrown in so lets get started!

message cypher

First, download and print the challenge.

Next, assemble the Secret Message Cypher Wheel.  The instructions are on the sheet.

cypher wheel

Then use the cypher wheel to decode the messages!  We have 3 separate pages.  The first with basic code and the other 2 with codes that require addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division to calculate the right number to use for the code.

You can use the wheel over and over to challenge the kids to create their own codes.  My daughter jumped at the chance to give one to her best friend so I’m sure it will have a lot of use at my house.


So in all this, what is a cypher?  A cypher or cipher is just a secret or disguised way of writing.  So basically the same as a code.  A fun new word to introduce!

This challenge is part of Who Stole the Cake? [Unit 2].  Jump over to the unit main page to see all lessons and activities.


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