Friedrich Froebel was born in 1782 in Oberweissbach, Germany. His mother died when he was 9 months old and his father was away on pastoral duties quite often so he went and lived with his uncle when he was 10 years old. Froebel was not completely interested in school but enjoyed forestry, geometry, and land surveying (Dunn 169). His upbringing and interests, along with his Christian faith strongly influenced his educational philosophy. "Friedrich used learner-centered, child-centered, experience-based ideas to develop the world's first kindergarten, a school for young children" (Henson 8). The father of kindergarten was the title usually associated with Froebel and his philosophy. His methods allow children to grow and move on as they conquer new concepts not when educators or administrators decide. Froebel's philosophy was influenced by the teaching methods of Pestalozzi (Dunn 169). He agreed with many of Pestalozzi's ideas but thought that there was too much focus on memorization and direct instruction. Froebel "balanced group activities with individual play, direction from teachers was balanced with periods of freedom, and the studies of nature, mathematics, and art were balanced by exploring" (Froebel Web). Through exploration by the child and observation by the teacher education could be distributed as was needed in the best interest of the child. He wanted students to figure things out for themselves through discovery. If a child can discover a concept on their own that child is more likely to grasp and clearly understand that concept because they were the means by which they learned the information. Play was a major aspect of his philosophy because it gave children a chance to externalize their inner nature and a chance to imitate and try out various adult roles. Children had the chance to try on many faces and figures so that they could find out who they were and who they should be. Even today people try to find out who they are because in...
Cited: Dunn, Shelia G. Philosophical Foundations of Education: Connecting Philosophy to
Theory and Practice. Upper Saddle River NJ: Merrill/Prentice-Hall, 2005.
Froebel Web. Online Resource. 1998. http://www.froebelweb.org/webindex.html.
Henson, Kenneth T. (Fall 2003). Foundations for Learner-Based Education: A
Knowledge Base. Education, 1, Retrieved 10/28/06,
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