Fun Parks and Gardens to Visit Over Spring Break

Now that winter is finally drawing to a close, it’s time to start planning some activities to shake off that cabin fever! Check out some of these local venues that offer fun for families with young children:

Wheaton Regional Park, Georgia Ave. Entrance: Entering Wheaton Regional Park off Georgia Avenue — just south of Randolph Road — you will find a large picnic area with lots of play equipment, a miniature train, and a working carousel.

Weekends in April this year feature a fun “Eye Spy” experience on the miniature train. Riders will receive a card with characters to spot along the trip. Children under 2 ride free with a paying adult. The “Eye Spy” experience is available April 17 to 22 as well for MCPS spring break, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Pack a picnic and enjoy this free public park! More information is available at the Wheaton Regional Park website.

Brookside Gardens: Spring is a wonderful time to visit Brookside Gardens. This 50-acre public garden includes an aquatic garden, azalea garden, butterfly garden, children’s garden, Japanese garden (complete with koi pond), rain garden, a woodland walk, and more.

You’ll also find a picnic area and nature center near the parking lot. Admission to the gardens is free. Brookside Gardens also has a variety of classes and program for preschool-age children.

Information on both the park and child-friendly programs can be found at the Brookside Gardens website.

Posted on April 15, 2019 and filed under Newsletter, Community Activities.

April GSLP Home + School Connection Newsletter

The April GSLP Home + School Connection Newsletter includes information about our partners at the Gaithersburg Judy Center (plus the upcoming Teacher Appreciation Book Drive to support our friends there!), ideas for honoring Earth Day with your child, awesome local parks to visit this spring, springtime activities, technology at school FAQs, and a preview of DinoRock, coming to GSLP on April 25 and 26. Plus, don’t miss our fresh book recommendations from Pre-K teacher Mrs. Forcey!

Posted on April 12, 2019 and filed under Newsletter.

"Kids Call of the Game" for the Baltimore Orioles

In partnership with the Baltimore Orioles, Maryland EXCELS has an exciting opportunity for our students!

There will be 10-15 children, ages 4 to 16, randomly selected from EXCELS programs. These children will receive an exclusive chance to record a “Kids Call of the Game” – radio call reenactments of famous Orioles' plays throughout baseball history – in the Entercom Radio Studios. These recordings will air on the Orioles radio network over the course of the season and will highlight the students’ programs and Maryland EXCELS.  Each child selected will also receive up to (4) tickets to an Orioles home game.

To participate: Those interested in having their children participate need to fill out this form by Friday, April 12, 2019.

By completing the form, each parent/guardian is indicating their permission for their child to participate, and agreeing to the following additional requirements:

  • Child must be able to read or repeat a script clearly 

  • Child must be enrolled in a Maryland EXCELS Quality Rated Program

  • Child must be between the ages of 4 and 16

  • Parent/guardian/family member must be able to take their child to the Entercom Radio Studios the morning of Wednesday, April 24, 2019 to record their radio spot at 1423 Clarkview Road, Baltimore, Maryland.

Families and providers of selected children will be notified on April 16, 2019.

View Flyer

Posted on April 11, 2019 and filed under Community Activities.

April Picture Book Recommendations

By Lori Forcey, GSLP Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

For our April Book Nook, we’re offering up a basketful of goodies — a little selection that touches on Pre-K’s Nature theme, and another choice that covers the EPK 2 and EPK 3’s construction-related themes. And finally, we finish up with an adorable Easter book, starring a favorite preschool character, from local author Janet Morgan Stoeke.

The Koala Who Could, by Jim Field: Alliteration and rhymes abound in this catchy story about Kevin the Koala. Kevin enjoys hanging out in his tree and minding his own business, even though his friends encourage him to come down and play. Then one day, Kevin is forced out of his tree and down to the ground, but what will happen when he gets there? Filled with cute illustrations and featuring native Australian animals that local preschoolers may not be familiar with, this audiobook is available in our lending library.

Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site, by Sherri Dudley Rinker and Tom Lichtenheld: This modern classic visits each of the construction site vehicles — crane truck, cement mixer, dump truck, bulldozer and excavator — as they finish their work for the day and snuggle down to sleep for the night. The rhyming words are so cozy and soft, you’ll feel yourself stifling yawns while reading it. Fair warning — save this little gem, which can be found at your local library, for bedtime!

Minerva Louise and the Colorful Eggs, by Janet Morgan Stoeke: Oh Minerva Louise! We check in on our favorite easily confused hen and find it’s springtime at the farm and Minerva Louise has a brand new hat (that looks suspiciously like an Easter basket). As she explores the farm she finds colorful eggs dotting the landscape — but where are the eggs’ mothers? The answer to this mystery can be found at your local library.

Posted on April 11, 2019 and filed under Newsletter, Book Nook, Family Lending Library.

Easter Services at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church invites you to Easter worship services here on Sunday, April 21, 2019. From the church website:

Alleluia! Christ is risen! Joyous worship is offered at Good Shepherd at 3 times this Easter Sunday:

8:00 am: Festive Traditional Worship
9:45 am: Festive Traditional Worship
11:30 am: Contemporary Worship

All services are family-friendly will have Holy Communion, festive music, nursery available, a children's sermon, and "Busy Boxes" for kids during worship.

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church is vibrant congregation where your family will be welcomed and supported in your faith journey.

Good Shepherd also has a full slate of Holy Week worship services, kicking off with 9:00 and 11:30 AM Palm Sunday worship services on April 14. There will also be a special Sunday School family event that day, “Palm Funday,” featuring an interactive, kid-friendly retelling of the Holy Week story.

Good Shepherd will have a New Member Orientation session in late April for families interested in learning more about our church.

Posted on April 1, 2019 .