$9,500 grant from The National Grid Foundation will support the Math Rules! program in the 2013-2014 school year

We all know that National Grid is in the business of providing energy to millions of homes and businesses, but did you know it also powers nonprofits? Thanks to the generosity and social responsibility of The National Grid Foundation, Boston Partners in Education (Boston Partners) is now one of many nonprofits to receive a substantial grant from the energy giant.

“Math Rules! is one of the best programs of its type,” said Robert Keller, President of The National Grid Foundation. “The students that they reach don’t always get the level of mastery that they require during their classroom experience, so we are happy to fund a program that is really helping children to progress in their education in such a fundamental and important way.” (Watch video below to hear Mr. Keller’s full statement.)

The goal of Math Rules! is to help Boston Public Schools (BPS) students in grades 1-5 develop strategic mathematical thinking by providing them with consistent, caring role models. Academic mentors are matched with small groups of students in the classroom to help them build fundamental number skills, as well as self-confidence. For example, Boston Partners’ volunteer Anu Balakrishna visits the Eliot K-8 School once a week to work with 4th graders Grace and Maddie.

“Grace and Maddie did not like math when I first met them, and it was a struggle to get them to focus,” said Ms. Balakrishna. “I tried to emphasize that they can be good at math– they just need to figure out a way to approach the problem.”

Over the course of the school year, Grace and Maddie learned math lessons from Anu, but the students also discovered more about their individual learning styles. For example, the group realized that Grace is a visual learner and likes examples, and that Maddie is a quick learner, but has trouble concentrating.

“Grace got very excited when things made sense and understood the method. Maddie showed progress in understanding that how you solve a problem is just as important as getting the right answer,” Ms. Balakrishna said.

The National Grid Foundation’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in areas they serve, focusing on environmental and educational issues — especially classroom-based education for K-12 students. The Foundation believes in giving people the tools to build hope, an essential ingredient in the development of individuals, families and communities.

The National Grid Foundation President Robert Keller presents a check to Boston Partners staff

The National Grid Foundation’s President, Robert Keller, presents a $9,500 check to Boston Partners staff

As one of only a few in-school volunteer math tutoring programs in the area, Math Rules! fills a crucial need for math intervention services.

“We funded this program because we believe, as [Boston Partners] does, in the importance of early mastery of math skills. We thank them for the work they do to help the children in Boston,” said Keller.

Our corporate partnerships enable Boston Partners to offer Math Rules! to more BPS students, like Maddie and Grace. To learn more about Math Rules!, please view the infographic below or visit our website at www.bostonpartners.org.

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