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Kindergarten Krew: Friedrich Froebel

A look at the life and philosophies of Friedrich Froebel

Erica Zucker

on 30 September 2013

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Transcript of Kindergarten Krew: Friedrich Froebel

Founder of the Kindergarten
Friedrich Froebel
Born on April 21st, 1782 at Oberweissbach
His mother died 9 months after his birth (has a huge impact on his life)
His father remarried but Froebel often still felt neglected
Constantly craved motherly love
Spent most of time alone – began to study nature
Father enrolled him in the girls’ school
End of 1972: Taken to live with his uncle and attended an upper class boys’ school
Later in life Froebel often said the aim of his kindergarten philosophy was to give children a better childhood than his own
Froebel's Early Life
In 1837, Froebel opened his first kindergarten institution

Learning begins at birth and is continuous throughout a child's life

Believed that children are born with "structures" in their mind

Education gives them the tools to "unfold" the ideas already in their mind

Need a stimulating environment in which they can learn freely and naturally

Need to learn about unity and relations

Need to learn that they are part of a greater, spiritual community

Play - a from of learning and development
Froebel's Kindergarten Philosophy
Froebel's Gifts
Froebel's Ongoing Influence in Today's Society
Historical Context
Influence of Other Philosophers
Future Studies:
University and Pestalozzi
Importance of Play
“I desire to educate men whose feet shall stand on God’s Earth rooted fast in nature, while their head towers up to heaven, and reads its secrets with steady gaze, whose heart shall embrace both heaven and earth, shall enjoy the life of earth and nature with all its wealth of forms, and at the same time shall recognise the purity and peace of heaven, that unites in its love God’s earth with God’s heaven”
Saw a connection between plant growth and human growth - applied to his philosophy

Children are like seeds - within them they have everything they need

With proper attention, care and nutrients, a child, like a plant will one day bloom
Supportive environment (Garden)=classroom
Attentive Gardener=Teacher
1800: Studied at University of Jena
Attended as many lectures on as many subjects as possible
Forced to drop out when he couldn't pay tuition

1804: Studied architecture at Frankfurt University

1806, 1808: Studied at Yverdon with Pestalozzi
Disliked lack of coherence between subjects

1811: Studied language at Gottingen
1812: Studied with Professor Weiss
Moving from simple to the complex
Honouring Froebel
-Joined German army to fight against Napoleon

-Met two men in his division, Wilhelm Middendorf and Heinrich Langethal, who shared an interest in education

-Set up his first school in 1816, named it the Universal German Educational Institute
-Then moved same school to Kailhau with help from his two men that he met in the German army.

-The maximum number of students to attend was 60 boys all over the age of seven.

-Idea of kindergarten had not been integrated yet.

-School shut down when enrollment went down to five.

-Next school was started for a man named Xavier Schnyder in 1831. Created school in his castle on Lake Sempach.

-This school was then moved to Willisau where it prospered.

-Froebel`s first job with children involved him working in an orphanage.

-Developed first nursery school for 3 and 4 year olds where he implemented music and play into his curriculum .
Developing in a Changing World
Importance of Play
-Froebel's ideal teacher should be a woman

-Believed that a woman would maintain the mother figure necessary for development

-He felt that because he didn't have a mother to care for him it affected him negatively

-He didn't want any child who didn't have a mother to be lost - Hence the mother figure in schools to maintain proper socialization.
The Kindergarten Teacher
Gifts are objects that have two meanings and represent a fundamental form
There is significance in their physical appearance and their symbolic meaning
Begin as simple objects and gradually more complex items were added
Follow an order beginning at fundamental structures, and are meant to lead from one to the next
Become more complex and lead into more ideas as they continue the sequence.
-Occupations are materials that the children can use to create

-Include objects such as paper, pencils, sticks, clay, and like objects because they give the child opportunity to use their imagination and make a product.

-Cannot return to original form

Froebel also created games, songs, and stories using his observations in hopes to create socialization, exercise, and teach observation.
Significance of Nature
What historical events
are influential in
educational philosophy?
(cc) photo by theaucitron on Flickr
The Gifts
-six colored balls of yarn
-can represent many objects in the world around us
-many possible motions
-a sphere, a cylinder, and a cube
-represent objects from children's lives
-can be used for counting, and physics
-eight one inch cubes
-story making from shapes of objects that relate to everyday objects
-portions, fractions, counting, and other arithmetic
-eight rectangular pieces
-bricks, tiles, and stairs
-new words: oblong, vertical, horizontal
-21 one-inch cubes, 6 half-cubes, and 12 quarter-cubes
-realistic buildings and structures
-geometric shapes, Pythagorean theory
-18 oblong blocks, 12 flat square blocks, and 6 narrow columns
-castles, forms with lids
-area and volume
-Square (1" and 2")
-Equilateral triangle (1" and 2")
-Right-angled isosceles triangle (1" and 2")
-Right-angled scalene triangle
-Obtuse isosceles triangle Circle (2")
-Half circle (2")
-solid to flat
-fractions, symmetry, opposites, proportion
-four laws of unity
-straight lines and curved lines
-explanations to understand
Sticks: slants, angles, measurement, top/middle/bottom, right/left, toward/away
Rings: whole/half, diameter/circumference, inside/outside and the concept of curve direction
-knowledge, life, beauty
-objects represented by points
-creative process, but can go back to original form
Erica, Kirsten, David, Sara and Lauren
The Kindergarten Krew Presents...
Catholic Reformation
Charles V defeats the
Protestant Price & Allies
Peace of Ausburg
30 Years War
Southwest Germany
Hapsburg's & Hohenzollern's
King Charles VI Dies
Prussian Allies:
Spain, France, Bavaria, Saxony,
Naples, Sicily, Sweeden
Austrian Allies:
Great Britain, Hanover, Dutch,
Sardinia, Russia, Saxony
Who gives What to Who?

Austria Silesia Prussia
France Cape Breton Island Dutch
France Madras British
France Barrier Towns Dutch

Maria Theresa Parma Spain
Friedrich Froebel is born!
French Revolution
Napoleon Bonaparte
Battle of Nations
Battle of Waterloo
Restoration Of Conservatism
Revolutions of 1848
January 18th, 1871
The Many Purposes Of Play:

1. Bringing out a child's thoughts and feelings
2. Uncovering the major stages of human history in children's experiences
3. Acting out adult behavior
4. Connecting children to society and culture
Spiritual vs. Natural
(cc) image by nuonsolarteam on Flickr
Johann Gottfried Herder (1744-1803)
Ideas on the Philosophy of History of Humanity
Froebel's Gifts
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)
Faust and Wether
Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767-1835)
Studied the languages of Aboriginal groups
Johann Gotllieb Fichte (1762-1814)
"Man in his external manifestation, like the crystal, bearing within himself the living unity, shows at first more one-sidedness, individuality, and incompleteness, and only at a later period rises to all-sidedness, harmony, and completeness."
- urged the regeneration of German culture through a revitalizing education
Immanuel Kant (1724-1804)
Critique of Pure Reason
Full transcript