Freidrich W. A. Froebel is best known as the founder of kindergarten. He was a German educationalist. Froebel was born in 1782 in a village in Germany. His childhood was difficult because his mother died when he was a baby and his father abandoned him. Froebel was given to his uncle’s care. Between 1808-1810 he attended the training institute run by
John Pestalozzi at Yverdon.
Froebel left the institution accepting the basic principles of Pestalozzi's theory: permissive school atmosphere, emphasis on nature, and the object lesson. Froebel, however, was a strong idealist whose view of education was closely related to religion. He believed that everything in this world was developed according to the plan of God. He felt that something was missing in Pestalozzi's theory: the "spiritual mechanism" that, according to Froebel, was the foundation of early learning. Froebel's philosophy of education rested on four basic ideas: free self-expression, creativity, social participation, and motor expression.
Froebel began to focus on the needs of children just prior to entering school. He envisioned a place attended by 4-6 year olds where children would be nurtured and protected from outside influences—like plants in a garden. Froebel decided to call his school kindergarten, which in German means "child garden." Froebel began a training institute for the teachers of his schools. He believed that teachers should be highly respected people with values that the children should imitate. The teacher should also be a sensitive, open, and easily approachable person.
Froebel's first kindergarten was founded in 1837 in Blakenburg Germany. It featured games, play, songs, stories, and crafts to stimulate imagination and develop physical and motor skills. The materials in the room were divided into two categories: "gifts" and