Verizon Foundation Grant of $53,000 Will Enable Indiana Teachers to Receive Free Training to Use Thinkfinity.org's Online Resources

The Indiana Department of Education on Wednesday (June 24) received a $53,000 grant from the Verizon Foundation to raise awareness and train teachers throughout the state to use thousands of free educational resources available on Thinkfinity.org.

Thinkfinity.org is the Verizon Foundation's comprehensive online portal to more than 55,000 educational and literacy resources for teachers, parents and students. Resources include standards-based, grade-specific, K-12 lesson plans and engaging interactive activities provided in partnership with many of the nation's leading educational and literacy organizations.

Thinkfinity.org offers elementary through high school teachers resources across eight academic disciplines, from science to English to mathematics, to improve student achievement. Thinkfinity.org is designed to help teachers gain access quickly to online resources.

"We have made it a priority at the Indiana Department of Education to expand the array of learning resources available to our teachers and students across the state," said Dr. Tony Bennett, superintendent of public instruction. "We see the Thinkfinity.org resources as a great complement to our ever-expanding collection of digital and Web-based content in support of student learning."

The Indiana Department of Education has aligned the Thinkfinity.org resources to state academic standards and expects to offer training and awareness opportunities for educators throughout the state. The Thinkfinity.org resources, along with many others, are available on the Department of Education Web site at www.doe.in.gov/standards.

To make the Thinkfinity.org site even more valuable to teachers, students and parents, the Verizon Foundation recently announced several enhancements and improvements, including:

  • The addition of 500 new resources.

  • Individual portals to allow users to search for resources targeted to educators, students, parents or after-school programs.

  • A dynamic new look.

  • A simple, more comprehensive search engine.

  • Ability to search for resources tailored to individual state standards.

In addition to providing standards-based resources from the nation's leading educational and literacy organizations, Thinkfinity.org also offers a comprehensive professional-development program that allows teachers to sign up for free online or face-to-face training to learn how to make the most of Thinkfinity.org tools.

The face-to-face training will be arranged and led by trainers from the Indiana Department of Education who have received in-depth instruction from Thinkfinity.org trainers.

"Whether it's an English teacher looking for resources to spark a love of reading in a student, or a parent seeking a convenient and user-friendly educational activity to stimulate the mind of a young child, Thinkfinity.org will help them quickly and easily find the information needed to improve student achievement," said Neil Krevda, Verizon's vice president of external affairs in Indiana.

Content for Thinkfinity.org is provided through a partnership between the Verizon Foundation and 11 of the nation's leading organizations in the fields of education and literacy: the American Association for the Advancement of Science, International Reading Association, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Center for Family Literacy, National Council on Economic Education, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Council of Teachers of English, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, National Geographic Society, ProLiteracy Worldwide and the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its free educational Web site, Thinkfinity.org, and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence.  In 2008, the Verizon Foundation awarded more than $68 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the U.S. and abroad.  It also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in an additional $26 million in combined contributions to nonprofits.  Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation's largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 3 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 86 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations provide converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  Wireline also includes Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 237,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $97 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.