Company Offers Free eMentoring programs for Grades 3-5 With Award-winning Content to Support Educational Equity

PHILADELPHIA – February 8, 2018 – Today at the 2018 National Title I Conference, Cricket Media® puts the spotlight on its innovative corporate eMentoring programs that share the mission of Title I: “to provide students in low income communities with access to high quality educational opportunities that put them on the path to success.” Launching this month, TryEngineering Together™ leverages Cricket Media content and STEM enthusiast eMentors to put students on the path to STEM careers.

CricketTogether™, launched in 2017, combines Cricket Media’s award-winning content with an eMentoring platform to provide teachers with a free, safe, and motivating way to help their students become more expert readers, thinkers and writers, with 1:1 eMentors. CricketTogether creates an environment where students get guidance from and build friendships with their eMentors, learn from content that interests them, and receive coaching from their teachers along their learning paths. CricketTogether won Best of Show from Tech & Learning magazine at ISTE 2017.

TryEngineering Together, developed, in partnership with IEEE, the world’s largest technical professional organization advancing technology for humanity, is a response to the urgent need to inspire and educate a future generation of engineers. TryEngineering Together partners with corporations to match company employee volunteers with students in grades 3-5, particularly those in economically disadvantaged communities, in 1:1 “eMentoring” relationships to create safe, powerful STEM learning experiences.

Students and eMentors participating in TryEngineering Together might collaborate to explore the wonders of flight, learn about how wind energy helps to preserve the planet, or how inventions are shaping the future. Through the program, students learn to think critically, solve problems, and work collaboratively and creatively. They become confident in their ability to learn and enjoy STEM subjects, beginning to understand and appreciate the wonder and variety of STEM career possibilities.

Teachers and eMentors alike have high praise for CricketTogether. Lucie Unferth Hawk, a fifth-grade teacher at Ridge Elementary School in Charlotte, North Carolina, said “It is extremely rewarding for me as a teacher to read the letters my students are writing and exchanging with their mentors about their stories. They are reading for enjoyment, talking about what they are reading and are excited about it. The best part is that the motivation for reading has increased and it is impacting their academic achievement. The more a child reads the better reader they become.” 

Kevin Manzel, an eMentor from The Great Courses, who started with CricketTogether during the pilot program last spring, championed the initiative at his company. He said, “From the time I received my first letter from the first student I eMentored, I was hooked. He told me about his family, how he liked soccer and football, how he wanted to learn about woodworking because his dad was a carpenter. I was able to share my interest in sports, and also ask him to think about what he’d like to build if he were a carpenter.  

“Once we’d built a rapport over our families and interests, then we read magazine articles together – virtually -- and discussed them. Since I have a son the exact same age as my pen pal, it was both easy and fun to pick out what I found interesting, and then prod him with questions I knew would stir his creative thinking juices. Best of all, I looked forward to getting my e-mail notice that ‘You have a letter waiting for you!’”

Nina Zolt, founder of Cricket Media, said, “At Cricket Media, we share the mission of teachers attending the Title I conference – to maximize educational equity for all students. Through our eMentoring programs, students around the country now have access to great content and caring adult role models who connect with them on a personal level, igniting a new motivation for learning and providing an authentic purpose for reading and writing, to exchange ideas with a caring adult.”

Illustrative of its commitment to educational equity, Cricket Media is offering all teachers who visit the company’s booth #435 during the Title I conference a free subscription to a title from its portfolio of 11 award-winning children’s magazines.

Teachers attending the 2018 National Title I Conference can learn more about TryEngineering Together and CricketTogether in the Cricket Media booth #435 or by visiting www.crickettogether.com and tryengineeringtogether.com/.

About Cricket Media

Cricket Media is a global education company known for creating high quality print and multi-media products for children, families, mentors, teachers, and partners that improve learning opportunities for everyone. Led by its 11 award-winning publications for children and customizable research-tested collaborative learning platform, the company is committed to making, building, and supporting innovative learning experiences with high-quality age-appropriate content that help children safely experience the world. For more information, visit www.cricketmedia.com.

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