Verizon Offers Free, Fun, Educational Resources to Help Kids Get Ready to Return to School

As schools get ready to open, Verizon is encouraging parents to use the educational games on Thinkfinity.org to help kids brush up on their math, science and language arts skills after the long summer break.

According to the National Summer Learning Association, all young people experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer.

"The increased emphasis on math and science learning in school can create anxiety for parents and students alike," said Rose Stuckey Kirk, Verizon Foundation president.  "That's why Verizon's Thinkfinity.org education platform provides innovative yet fun ways for students to understand the sometimes difficult subject matter. We offer a collection of easily accessible games, videos and podcasts appropriate for all grade levels and that takes the stress out of learning and puts the fun front and center.  The more a student enjoys learning, the more he or she will comprehend the subject."

Verizon's Thinkfinity (www.thinkfinity.org) is an interactive educational platform that provides tens of thousands of free resources for use in and out of the classroom and suitable for children in kindergarten through the 12th grade.  Among the most popular educational games, which can all be accessed from Thinkfinity, are:

  • neXtu, from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Arrange geometric pieces with point values to accumulate points - and steal points from the opponent - in this game that's about chance and strategy as well as nimble math skills.  (This is just one of many games at the popular Calculation Nation site.)
  • Gravity Launch, from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  Kids can master the force of gravity by launching a rocket into space and using the earth and the moon's gravity to steer its trajectory.
  • All Systems are Go! from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. It takes a steady hand...and an understanding of body parts and body systems to reassemble all of Arnold's organs to the right place.
  • Slush Rush, from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Students can see how computer models can help them deal with uncertainty and make decisions about how to proceed with a project. In this activity, students are presented with thirsty customers from all over the universe. The students' job is to choose the number and kinds of drinks to make to satisfy their thirsty customers.
  • Comic Creator, from the National Council of Teachers of English. Design a comic strip with Comic Creator, including the option to create a superhero. What will the dialog be? How will it end? The creator decides.
  • Tinker Ball, from the Smithsonian Institute.  Budding builders and architects can arrange unlimited gears, tubes, tunnels, tin cans, and more to get a ball dropped from a ledge into a cup.  (Other playful invention games can be found at Invention Playhouse.)
  • Mission 1: For Crown or Colony? from the National Endowment for the Humanities and WNET. Students fascinated with history can become Nat Wheeler, a 14 year old printer's apprentice in Boston in the year 1770 - right before the Boston Massacre.  The game enables students to navigate the city, complete tasks and decide the fate of the character.
  • Wonderopolis, from the National Center for Family Literacy. Recently visited a theme park over the summer?  Find out if it housed the fastest roller coaster.  

Additional free interactive educational games can be found by visiting www.thinkfinity.org/games-and-tools.

Through Collections and Donations, Verizon Provided More Than $300,000 in School Supplies in Annual Campaign

When school starts, 20,000 students in 215 schools and nonprofit organizations in local communities across the country will get the tools they need to have a successful school year.  In its annual Tools for School drive, Verizon employees, its customers and the general public collected and donated new and gently used school supplies, including rulers, backpacks, crayons and other items children need to start the school year. 

In addition, Verizon employees and members of the public donated more than $11,000 to fund more than 80 school projects.  The projects were posted on DonorsChoose.org, a nonprofit organization that allows contributors to donate to a myriad of education projects at public schools throughout the country.  To further encourage donors to participate, the Verizon Foundation provided DonorsChoose.org a grant of $10,000 for use as matching funds for science, math or technology-related projects. Close to 10,000 students in classrooms across the country will benefit directly through the projects funded on DonorsChoose.org.

In total, Verizon provided more than $300,000 through collections and donations to help more than 30,000 students return to school with the right tools.

Charles Best, CEO of DonorsChoose, said, "We're thrilled that the Verizon Foundation is supporting America's classrooms by encouraging such donations and offering a grant that gives even more students and teachers the resources that are needed to enhance students' learning experience." 

The Verizon Foundation uses its technology, financial resources and partnerships to address critical social issues, with a focus on education and domestic violence prevention. Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation's largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered nearly 6 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 106 million total connections nationwide.  Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 196,000 and last year generated consolidated revenues of $106.6 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.