FRIEDRICH FROEBEL (1782-1852)
At the age of fifteen he was apprenticed by his father to a forester, so that he might study both forestry and surveying. Froebel seems to have had very little idea of what he really wanted to do in life, and yet there was an exceedingly lively interest developing in his mind in almost everything that entered his awareness. It was an interest which was not basically academic or organized in any particular way, but it arose out of his personal perception and awareness. This thirst for sheer information and knowledge about the things that attracted him most led him to the University of Jena, where he managed to attend a variety of courses in biology and mathematics. These absorbed him particularly at first because they arose quite naturally out of his childhood involvement in nature, in school arithmetic and in surveying.