Working for a Cause

There is much talk in the news today about standing up for causes you believe in. We are fortunate to live in a country where each individual may feel passion for different issues and has the freedom to express their feelings or work towards solutions. This does not go unnoticed for our boys at Gilman Lower School. Through Morning Meeting topics, book discussions, and social studies lessons the boys are introduced to their place in the world and the need to help make that world a better place. For our youngest boys, the world may comprise the playground or backyard at home where fair rules for others or respect for the environment are the “causes” to fight for. For our older boys, study of world events may spur on causes to pursue. After reading about their plight this summer, fifth grader, Nick Lutzky, decided that Snow Leopards need support and organized a bake sale this week with the help of Student Council. The boys gladly baked or picked up treats to sell before school. Other fifth grade boys, after reading the moving novel, A Long Walk to Water, spoke with Dr. Webster about organizing a fundraiser to support bringing clean water and wells to South Sudan. They registered concern for the unfairness in the world and spoke of their desire to give their time for others in need. (See pictures below of boys in grade 5 selling items in support of the snow leopard.)



Through our Gilman Outreach Committee, the lower school helps boys participate in a number of worthy causes. Each year the boys read for thousands of minutes in our Read-a-Thon. This year proceeds from the communal reading will go to the Baltimore Hunger Project. Our own Gilman parent, Lynne Kahn, has been running this worthy organization since 2014. (see the link below) The boys are excited to spend quality time reading and doing service for the community at the same time!

Baltimore Hunger Project

Some would say that empathy is quickly becoming one of the most important traits to foster as we teach the next generation of children. In a world containing so many inequities, we will continually need to remind our students that they have the ability to stand up for the rights of others, whether it is on the playground or in the greater world. They need to develop tools to recognize when others are hurting. There have been many articles and books written about this topic. I have included a link below if you would like to read more.

Teaching Empathy

Importance of Teaching Empathy


Have a great weekend.







I hope that my communication with you each week encourages “talking points” to inspire conversation with your son or sons. Here are some “talking points” based on recent school events.



  • If you are in Kindergarten- Did you enjoy the Maryland Boys’ Choir assembly? Would you like to join a group like that when you are older?
  • If you are in Prep-One- How did you egg drop go in Makerspace class? What did you learn in science about engineering a perfect shelter for your egg to survive a fall?



  • If you are in First Grade- Did you think your reading of the Mitten Story went well? What specific things did you learn about your habitat in science class?
  • If you are in Second Grade- Did you enjoy the book Tornado? How did you construct your diorama of the story?
  • If you are in Third Grade- How is your exploration of the National Parks coming? How many badges have you earned? How is the research coming for your Native American report? Did you complete your artifact for display?
  • If you are in Fourth Grade- What are you learning about inventions? Have you come across some inventions that you didn’t know about? Which one will you research and write about? What is plagiarism?
  • If you are in Fifth Grade- What is the Stock Market Game? What information do you need to know about picking good stocks? Did you enjoy the novel A Long Walk to Water? What types of service projects did it inspire?

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