Welcome Back to GFT!

Global Foundations Digest, Week of September 15, 2020

What a great first week back!

by Jennifer DeVille on September 15

I am so thankful that we were able to welcome students back to GFT this fall! We had a couple of great days exploring our new locations at Holt Park in Overlea and Towson Manor Park…here are some highlights from our week:


Morning Song

Our gathering included temperature checks, a good morning song, introductions, and poetry. It wasn’t long before students discovered Holt’s beautiful pond and started running laps around it as they played tag.

Turtles at 10!

Ms. Rowan showed us into the Nature Center where Holt’s animals live. We brought out Tilly (a box turtle) and Poppy (a terrapin). We learned that they need vitamin D from the sun to prevent their shells from rotting, so we’ll help them sunbathe each Tuesday. The kids were thrilled to turn over some rocks for Tilly to hunt bugs and nibble greens.

Rows and Columns

This RightStart Math game involves reviewing addition and subtraction facts. Lay out basic number cards in a 4×4 grid. Students look for pairs of cards that add up to or subtract to equal 5. As students progress, we start adding up/subtracting to 10, and then any multiple of 5. 

During one of a number of nature hikes, the children gathered twigs and sticks to make their own compass rose.  We discussed how the sun rises in the east and sets in the west and how people of long ago had that to use as their directional guide.  They got creative with the making of the letters and how they needed to be more squared-off… much like their ovens and clocks at home.

We loved the shelter and feel of the forest beneath our feet as we set off down the trails at Holt Nature Center.  Nolan pointed out a variety of mushroom species which led into a lively discussion of what we should and should not eat from the forest.  The students and adults alike were amazed at the tranquil, hidden oasis nestled among the busy city streets.  

Wind-Down Journaling

After a very exciting first day, the children had a chance to wind down and internalize all the learned and experienced during the day.  Some children chose to explore a bit more and draw a still life from what they saw on the move.  Others chose to draw and write from memory.  

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Poetry Corner is Back!

Another GFT tradition we looked forward to continuing as we transitioned to the great outdoors was Poetry Corner and Show-and-Tell.  The children were excited to choose their own poems to share with the group. Some of our emerging readers tackled the read alouds on their own while others preferred to choose and have the adults read for them.  The individual carpet squares served as great landing spaces for the children after an active morning getting acquainted with the challenging and oh-so fun playground at Towson Manor Park!

Math Games are Also Back!

Can you imagine how different your educational story might read if your mathematical foundation was built upon games?  Our GFT students have been diving back into the math games they lovingly remember from last year.  Today, the 1st graders played “Magic Squares”.  In a 3 x 3 grid, the “Magic Number” is 3 times the middle number.  All rows, columns, and diagonals add up to the “Magic Number”! There were facts flying all over the place as the students shared and brainstormed their ways through the squares.

Stone Soup!

     We had a rousing reading and play of the French folktale, Stone Soup.  In addition to reading and the 2020 theatrical debut of the GFT students, we had a rousing character study at the conclusion.  When asked, “What do we know about the soldiers?”, the students described how they were clever in convincing the villagers to share their food, and they didn’t steal the food, either.  When asked, “What were the villagers like?”, the students described them as worried, afraid, and greedy because they didn’t want to run out of food.  In the end, soldiers and villagers alike could all enjoy a feast with dancing.  

     We are so thrilled to be together again, and the learning and growing that are evident in this first week are an exciting taste of what’s still to come!  We thank you for your support and look forward to a wonderful year!

If you’re interested in hearing more about our program, volunteer opportunities to offset tuition, or are interested in our welcoming and inclusive umbrella, please drop us a line here. We’ll connect with you soon!

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