<I>Enlighten Me </I>on SuperPages.com Inspires Creative Learning Among Adults and Children

DALLAS -- Verizon SuperPages.com today launched a new online literacy and education site, Enlighten Me: Read, Learn and Explore (superpages.com/enlightenme). Enlighten Me stimulates intellectual exploration among children and provides parents, caregivers and teachers -- the people who influence a child's educational growth -- a robust educational resource that promotes the value of reading and encourages creative learning.

The heart of Enlighten Me is SuperThinkers, a fun resource with educational activities that challenge and engage kids while making learning transparent. Here, children have access to the original and interactive Peetnik Mysteries, which promote SuperThinking skills such as logic, problem solving, critical thinking, cooperative learning, imagination and creativity.

"To really make a difference with kids, you have to make sure they enjoy learning," said Janet Stevens, group vice president -- public affairs for Verizon Information Services. "Enlighten Me -- and the Peetnik Mysteries in particular -- provide caregivers the tools to help kids develop critical thinking skills while having fun online."

Making Learning Fun

SuperThinkers respects and challenges a child's emerging problem-solving skills as humorous text and clever visuals draw in the young player. Almost instantly, users will recognize the need to heed details while keeping track of the larger picture.

"SuperThinkers is a wonderful collection of motivating and meaningful activities that encourage creativity, research and analysis, problem solving, leadership and community involvement," said Dr. Peggy Healy Stearns, an award-winning, children's educational software designer. "While kids may not realize the educational value of solving mysteries, parents and educators can be satisfied that their time spent online is time well spent."

To create an online activity with significant educational and learning value, Verizon worked with FableVision Studios, an educational media company under the leadership of Emmy Award-winning Partner and Creative Director Peter Reynolds. FableVision creates positive programming and story-based engaging media for children and adults.

Solving the Peetnik Mysteries

The Peetnik Mysteries encourage SuperThinking by challenging children to solve the mysteries of Clutterbuck Valley, a fictional community where 12-year-old student and amateur detective Penn Peetnik runs the Problem Solvers Agency. Children use various real-life information-gathering tools, such as the yellow and white pages, a telephone, a map and a Who's Who directory, to familiarize themselves with Clutterbuck Valley, its geography, businesses and residents, to solve the community mysteries.

In addition, SuperThinkers offers tips on educational extracurricular activities, ideas on getting involved in the community and a reading list of appropriate mysteries and detective novels. Additional mysteries and content frequently will be added to Enlighten Me, ensuring that children can continually access new and interesting activities.

Parents, caregivers and educators can access a link from SuperThinkers that explains what "SuperThinking" is and how it can complement school curriculum, and teachers can explore ideas from an educational team on how to expand on SuperThinker themes in the classroom.

Additional Resources on Enlighten Me

Enlighten Me complements the resources and activities available on SuperThinkers with a number of community-oriented resources that in the past have not been available online:

  • Everyday Literacy -- Offers ways to bring literacy and technology into everyday family life from award-winning children's book author Mary Brigid Barrett;

  • Book Reviews -- Shares Verizon employees' book reviews and recommendations for all ages;

  • Literacy Leaders -- Shows how literacy has affected some extraordinary individuals;

  • Getting Involved -- Profiles literacy programs across the country and offers tips on how to get involved in programs in your area;

  • Literacy Links -- Provides useful links to literacy resources;

  • Internet Learning Tutor -- Offers a free, online interactive program to help novices and experts better use the Internet.

Enlighten Me combines Verizon's long-standing support of literacy with the national reach of its online directory, SuperPages.com.

"Verizon's championship of literacy causes provided the foundation for the development of Enlighten Me," Stevens continued. "Enlighten Me extends the reach of Verizon Reads and the many literacy programs that Verizon supports, including the Scholastic Book Angels and Books for Babies."

About FableVision

Led by Peter Reynolds, FableVision Studios (www.fablevision.com) leverages multiple media platforms including animation, books, CD-ROM, and the Web to create "stories that matter, stories that move" for children, adults and families, museums, publishers and broadcasters. The company continues to build an award-winning reputation among the educational, publishing and cross-media landscape, including launching two original animated series with Sesame Workshop/Nickelodeon's new television/on-line network, Noggin.

About Verizon Information Services and SuperPages.com

Verizon Information Services is the world's leading print and online directory publisher and a content provider for communications products and services. Verizon operates in 16 countries and has annual revenues of more than $4.3 billion. The company publishes nearly 1,200 U.S. Verizon SuperPages directories and 400 international directories with a total circulation of approximately 150 million copies worldwide.

Verizon Information Services also produces and markets SuperPages.com , the Internet's #1 online directory and shopping resource. SuperPages.com receives as many as 12 million visits and 9 million unique visitors a month. SuperPages.com also powers directory services on MSN, InfoSpace, AltaVista, Excite, Lycos, Ask Jeeves, HotBot, BigFoot, Tripod and Angelfire as well as more than 2,500 affiliate Web sites.

Through its signature Verizon Reads program and the Verizon Literacy Network, Verizon is committed to leading the fight to increase U.S. literacy levels by creating community and corporate awareness, raising funds, encouraging collaboration among literacy providers and engaging employees in supporting literacy programs. Verizon Information Services supports community outreach programs across the nation designed to increase the literacy rate of children and adults, and to help people of all ages become computer literate.

Based in the Dallas area, Verizon Information Services is a unit of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), one of the world's leading providers of communications services. For more information on Verizon Information Services, visit Verizon.SuperPages.com. For more information on Verizon's literacy programs, visit SuperPages.com and click on the Verizon Reads icon.

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