History of Kindergartens

Reading about Froebel and a little of the history of kindergartens the other day, I got curious. What (his)stories are there out there about kindergarten?

So, just a quick scan of the information availableInventing Kindergarten:

According to Peter Weston, “Friedrich Froebel was probably the most influential educationalist of the nineteenth century. He turned common sense upside down by arguing that the most important part of schooling was the pre-school period. He claimed that the health and happiness of the individual, the family and the state depended on the quality of pre-school education, at a time when there was virtually no public provision for it. He invented the concept and word kindergarten, and he began programmes of training for women kindergarten teachers, at a time when teaching was almost entirely a male profession.” (italics in original, p.1, Friedrich Froebel: his life, times & significance)



Apparently, “The Free Kindergarten movement in New Zealand had its beginnings in Dunedin in 1889. It had its origins in a thought. The Rev Rutherford Waddell, passing up and down Walker Street, ‘longed in some way to help the waifs and strays who played in somewhat unsanitary conditions in that neighbourhood’.

Learmonth Dalrymple, who had helped to establish Otago Girl’s High School, was interested in the education of young children and published a pamphlet in 1879 suggesting that at three years old children should be taught in schools based on the ideas of German educationalist Friedrich Frobel. Mark Cohen, editor of the Dunedin Star, had contact with a flourishing kindergarten in San Francisco and hoped to see a kindergarten established in Dunedin.”







A history of the Auckland Kindergarten Association / Brian Marshall. Auckland [N.Z.] : Auckland Kindergarten Association, 1983.

Seventy-five years of free kindergartens in New Zealand 1889-1964 / [compiled and edited by H. Downer]. [Dunedin, N..Z] : New Zealand Free Kindergarten Union, [1964]

How kindergarten came to America : Friedrich Froebel’s radical vision of early childhood education / Bertha von Marenholtz-Bülow ; translated from the German by Mrs. Horace Mann. New York : New Press, c2007.

A history of St James Kindergarten 1913-2013 / Tania Mace. Auckland, N.Z. : St James Kindergarten, 2013.

Moving with the times : leaders in education since 1908 : 100 years of the Auckland Kindergarten Association / Judith Duncan. [Auckland, N.Z.] : Auckland Kindergarten Association, 2008.

Flags and building blocks, formality and fun : one hundred years of free kindergarten in New Zealand / Beryl Hughes. Wellington, N.Z. : New Zealand Free Kindergarten Union, 1989.

An early Wellington kindergarten as described by Ted Scott / compiled by Geraldine McDonald. Wellington, N.Z. : New Zealand Council for Educational Research, 1975. First issued in Set 75, number one/item 11.

Three’s company? : an evaluation of the effect of a third teacher in selected kindergartens / Anne B. Smith … [et al.]. [Dunedin, N.Z.] : Education Dept., University of Otago, [1988]


About backyardbooks

This blog is a kind of electronic storage locker for ideas and quotes that inform my research... literary research into fiction for young adults (with a special focus on New Zealand fiction). Kiwis are producing amazing literature for younger readers, but it isn't getting the academic appreciation it deserves. I hope readers of this blog can make use of the material I gather and share by way of promoting our fiction. Cheers!
This entry was posted in History of Childhood and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s