chapter  2
5 Pages

Tracing Froebel’s legacy

The spread of the kindergarten movement across Europe and beyond and his influence on educators
ByJane Read

A year before Frederich Froebel's death in 1852, the Prussian government issued a ban on kindergartens. Ironically, political repression had the effect of spreading Froebel's kindergarten pedagogy far and wide; as political activists fled across Europe and to America, many of them carrying Froebel's ideas with them, an international Froebelian movement began to develop. The 1850s was a key decade for the introduction of Froebelian pedagogy in Britain as German emigre families arrived and settled in London and elsewhere, including some who had worked with Froebel or had been taught by him. Froebel's kindergarten pedagogy has travelled across the globe, taking on elements of local culture and practice as well as responding to the welter of new ideas and theories from different disciplines. In Australia and New Zealand, the driving force for the kindergarten movement came in the 1890s with concern for the lives of poor children.