Mrs. Maria Kraus-Boelte.

The kindergarten guide. An illustrated hand-book, designed for the self-instruction of kindergartners, mothers, and nurses online

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a fire-place with two
vases upon the mantle-piece,

a coflbc-mill,

The Kindergarten Guide: The
gifts.-v.2. The occupations

Mrs. Maria Kraus-Boelte, JohnKraus

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NEW Y0RK*=lfc^5^GER & CO.

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Copyrighi, 187/, .jy K. Strigkr.

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The Kindergarten Guide is the result of twenty years* experience
in the kindergarten, in Germany, England, and America.

, When the first chapters of this book were written, the Authors had
in view the preparation of a small hand-book, solely for the use of the
mothers who visited their ** Mothers' Class", and who, repeatedly,
requested the publication of the lessons and lectures there given.

This plan was, however, entirely changed, and the enlargement of
the work rendered necessary by the desire for information which was
very generally expressed, alike by persons visiting the kindergarten,
and by interested inquirers.

The pupils of the Training-Class conducted by the Authors, desired
a manual which should aid them in their work, following out the course
of teaching and training with which they had become familiar; letters
were received from all parts of the land, but especially from mothers
who were far away from any kindergarten, asking for advice and in-
struction, and needing information minute enough to supply the place
of personal observation ; many of the nurses who, by attendance with
the children at the kindergarten, had obtained such partial information
as circumstances permitted, manifested both interest in, and apprecia-
tion of, the work, and became desirous of wider knowledge as to the
proper treatment of children, and the means of making the nursery
more and more attractive; teachers and principals— male and female-
Sisters of Charity and other Orders inquired, both personally and by
letter, to what extent Froebers Occupations might be introduced into
the schools, asylums, and institutions under their charge ; and, finally,
many persons, superficially or imperfectly trained as teachers in so-
called kindergartens, becoming dissatisfied with their preparation,

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— IV —

honestly confessed this fact, and asked for the means of obtaining,
by the aid of some book on the subject, a better understanding of
kindergarten instruction, based upon the teachings and methods of
Froebel himself.

These numerous and urgent requests for increased information,
therefore, induced the Authors to enlarge the plan of their projected
work, and, now, this book is offered to all interested in the kindergar-
ten, as one which endeavors to meet, in some measure at least, these
repeated demands. It is to be hoped that the book, as a result of
much earnest labor bestowed upon it, will convey to those who attempt
to follow its directions, most of the help and assistance needed.

Of one thing the readers of this Guide may be assured, viz.:
that from it they may obtain the genuine praxis of Froebel, developed,
it is thought, in the light of his ideas. The attempt has been made to
render it all that such a guide should be as an aid to mothers, kinder-
gartners, and nurses, and to all who have the happiness and careful
training of the children at heart. Especial attention is invited to the
final chapter, on the spirit and manner of story-telling and of talking
and playing with the little ones. The information it conveys, and the
suggestions it offers, may be alike interesting and instructive to all who
are intrusted with the daily care of children.

Inasmuch as the result of right training becomes every day appar-
ent in the development and progress of the children under their charge,
all thoughtM persons who are earnestly engaged in kindergarten
education will be repeatedly surprised at the new channels of pleasing
instruction which are opened before them, and at the r^pid advance of
the children themselves in intellect and knowledge as well as at their
harmonious physical development.

It must be borne in mind, that it was the intention of Froebel that
his system of educational development should be continued beyond the
kindergarten age of the children. His labors, therefore, were not con-
fined to the kindergarten alone, which was but one of the several
features of his new and peculiar system.

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- V —

The benefit of Froebel's educational idea will completely be appre-
ciated only, when it shall have been applied to every stage of educa-
tional progress— when, in fact, the kindergarten is considered but the
preparation for a higher education based upon the same fundamental
principle ; a system wiiich will peritiit each pupil to manifest his own
individuality freely and without restraint, and allow the fullest scope to
his talents, tastes, and tendencies.

The course which is to be pursued after that of tlic kindergarten
has been concluded, is indicated or, at least, hinted at, in the different
Gifts and Occupations, in each of which the mere playful work is to be
gradually superseded by actual, practical work.

The careful student will find that Froebel's method furnishes the
starting-point for each science and for each profession.

In conclusion, the Authors will not fail to say expressly, that even
the most earnest study of this book, or of any other book, will never
enable a person to undertake successfully the management of a kinder-
garten—any attempt to do this must prove unsatisfactory. Nothing
short of a thorough understanding of the system and its philosophy,
nothing less than the attainment of a certain manual dexterity, and
a practical knowledge of many other apparently unimportant matters —
all of which can only be acquired by going through a flill course of in-
struction in a Training-Class — are, in addition to natural aptitude,
necessary for a person who desires to become a successf\il kindergartner.

New York, February 22d, 1877,

The Authors.

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"Deep meaning often lies in childish play/*

WhcX 18 the First Oift 7

The First Gift consists of six worsted balls, each ball having one of
the colors of the rainbow— blue, green, yellow, orange, red, and violet
(purple). They are contained in a box, in which are also six strings, of
diflferent colors, corresponding with the balls.
Why has lYcebel used the hall as the first of his means of occupation ?

Because he based all his means of play on mathematical founda-
tions, and because the ball is the simplest and completest ground-form,
and the one in which all other forms are contained. He also observed
that the ball is the first plaything the mother gives to her little one ;
wherever we find a child we find a ball, as, indeed, it is a favorite play-
thing alike with young and old. It is simple, light, and soft ; it can be
easily taken hold of by the child and fascinates because of its tendency
to constant motion.
What elements for intuition does the hall represent ?

' A child quickly learns to observe and compare. The ball gives the
elements of form, color, and motion, and the child finds the .best oppor-
tunity in this simple body, for the observation and comparison of size,
form, color, and motion.
What is taught hy the hall in regard to form ?

The child learns from it what a complete round body is, in which
neither planes, nor lines, nor points can be seen. The ball is an un-
separated whole, a simple ground-form ; it represents the bodies of the
universe and is to be found again and again in nature's countless forms
— in seed, bulbs, buds, fi-uit, flowers, the shapes of trees, and number-
less other things.
What does the hall show in regard to color?

In the six balls appear the three primary colors^ hlue, yellow, and
red — and their intermediates, the three secondary colors — green, formed

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by the combination of blue and yellow; orange^ formed by the combi-
nation of yellow and red; purple^ formed by the combination of red and
blue. By a knowledge of these combinations the harmony of colors
can be explained.
What kind of motions can he illustrated?

1 —Rest on an immovable body — the table, chair, etc.

2 — Rest on a movable body — the hand, etc.

3 — Motion on an immovable body— on a horizontal (flat), a ver-
tical (upright), or an inclined (slanting) plane.

4 -Motion on a movable body.

5 —Motion upon, in, or near a movable body.
The ball on a string illustrates:

1 — Swinging motions (lateral motion — like a swing or pendulum).

2 — Revolving motions (rotary motion — like a hoop or revolving

3 — Pulling and pushing motions (mechanical action — like the pulling
or pushing of a body).

4 — Hopping motions (elasticity — a bounding or rebounding body).
What kinds of bodily exercise are produced by the ball games?

Grasping at, or catching the ball strengthens the muscles of the
hand and arm; moving the ball on the string before the child educates
its eye in fixing a point; the games in the open air excite the healthy
action of the entire body and awaken grace in all the movements;
these are the first teachers of gymnastics— as when the ball hops, the
child hops, etc.

To what extent does the ball belong to the Kindergarten, as a part of Us

The following games are destined for the child in the nursery up
to its third year, although the exercises should be repeated in the
kindergarten, with children who have never
learned them:

1 — The ball is fixed to a string, which, as
the child takes hold of the ball, is gently pulled,
so that it escapes from the child's hand^ and thus,
it learns from observation:

a) possession— to have,

b) loss — having had,

c) recovery — receiving it back again.

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In this manner, when the ball is returned into the child's hand, it has
gained three new ideas : to have, to have had, to have again.

Mothers and nurses talk to the little one soon after birth and
speak, or sing to it, of things it cannot, as yet, at all comprehend; there-
fore it may be easily understood that Froebel accompanies almost all
his occupations with words or tunes. Rules for this cannot be given ;
the feeling must be the guide, for each mother
has her own language with her child, as each kin-
dergartner with the children under her care. /\^

2— The ball fixed to the string introduces the /
gSLmes: tiC'tac ; ding-dong; here — tliere ; frord — ^ (^)

back; right — left, etc. I

FroebeFs view was that the babe should not ^ ''^ ^^ ^ -
look into vacancy, but rather have some object to fix its attention upon.

3 — ^Next follow the games: tip and down; slowly and quickly; near
and far ; it comes — it goc-', etc. The tones of the voice must indicate
the vp and down, the far and near, etc. Tlic younger the child, the
slower the motion should be, and consequently the longer the string to
which the ball is attached.

The child receives at first only one ball, but it soon instinctively
seeks the opposite to ' is unit, i. c. multiplicity, which proceeds from
the unconscious desire to compare, and in which the child seeks the tie
of manifoldncss. Now, if the six ball/, arc of equal size and of the same
material, color forms this tie, and the diversity of tints leads the child
to the act of comparing. The balls representing the rainbow hues form
a harmony of color, and, as tlio children of light, are the symbols of
the highest peace.

When two or more balls given to the child, it should be done
in the different connections, or combinations. Thus, when two balls
are ined, they should be of the colors which are complementary, as
red and green, or blue and orange. When three balls are given,
they shoul.l be either

a) the primary colors : red, blue, and yellow ; or

b) the secondary colors : purple, green, and orange ; or

c) two primary and one secondary color, as red, blue, and purple, etc.
In taking a certain number of balls, attention is directed to number.
Of course, neither mothers nor kindergartners should use the words

* 'primary'* and ''secondary"; they are used here merely for guidance

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and explanation. In and through play, the child becomes acquainted
with colors and their relations to each other.

The ingenuity of mothers, or kindergartners, will suggest much
more than can here be mentioned. As the child grows older, two or
more balls may be used. If the little one drops the ball, make it
stoop to recover the toy, for it is well to accustom children both to
cause and effect in their actions.

4— Roll the baU softly, roU the baU;

Be careful, darling, it don't fall
Where has it gone ? down on the floor?
Oh ! there it rolls out by the door.
Baby shall go and get the baU,
Be careful, darling, it don't fall.

These or similar exercises should be continued repeatedly as long
as the child is amused by them. Repetition always makes an impression
deeper and more precise.

5 — The qualities of the ball may also be noticed in little rhymes ;

Very pretty is the ball,—

Bed and round and soft and smaU.



Oh! sec the pretty boll,—
So round, so soft and small.

The ball is round, and roUs each way,
The ball is nice for baby's play.

6— When the child begins to speak, it will be amused by learning
to repeat these words:

High -low ; high— low;
See it come — see it go:
Now fly, up high.
Pretty baU, say * 'Good-bye."
Littie baby goes to rest,
Mamma's arms his cozy nest

It should be borne in mind that accuracy and precision of move-
ment rest and soothe the child.

7 — At other times change in the time of the song and motion will
afford amusement :

Gently, gently moves the heiH, —
Now it hardly moves nt nil;
Hop, lazy ball. hop.

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^inftly, swiftly now it flies,
Almost hidden from our eyes:
Stop, whirling ball, stop.
8 — Let the ball strike the same spot on the
table three times, singing on the same note,
la, la, la,

tap, tap, tap,

or striking the ball on different places on the

tip, tap, top, — li, la, lo, etc. "^

9— A game can also be made with the following rhymes

Hop, little ball, hop:

Hop over the box.

Hop into the box.

On to the box, hop:

Now hide in the box,

Bnn back of the box,

And now lie still on the top.

The child on its mother's arm sees how the chickens, pigeons, and
sparrows pick up the crumbs or seeds ;

pick— pick,

she says to the child, and with the ball makes the
pick — pick.

Or, the father uses the hammer, while the
mother imitates its movements with the ball — j ^^

knock— knock. ^~^5B

Thus the child is taught the various kinds "^ ^^^^^^^-^^^-^:: iJ
of motion and their accompanying sounds and to represent them with
the ball.

Again, the string attached to the ball is first lengthened, then
shortened, and the

ding — dong

is spoken or sung until the time when the mother may introduce, in
their place, the words

slow— ly, slow— ly,

qnick-ly, quick-ly.

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The child should use the ball as often jand as long as it likes and, of
course, should be left alone to play with the ball as long as it is con-
tented. The mother may thus note the path which she must follow in
playing with her child, and the signs of progress wliich the child shows.

No strict dividing line can be drawn between the ball games suit-
able before the kindergarten age and those after the third year.

In the kindergarten the child must learn to represent, itself, thatf
which formerly it has only seen or observed.

1 — Over and back ;

forward and backward, etc.

11 — Bound, round, round;

to the left— to the right, etc ;

12— Let the ball on the string rebound on the table:

tip, top, tap.

13 — Let the ball hop
and suddenly disappear in
the box (at which the child
looks sad) — let it re-appear
(the child looks pleased).

14 — Up, np, up,
on the top of something.

15 — Down, down, down.

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16 — Jump, jump -

jnmp over.

17_Eoll, roll,

18— Go left—

19 — ^Wind up—

20— Smaller


roll back again, ^•
,likc a car-
riage. ^=

now right.


wind down.

and larger, also

winding and

unwinding it

round the


21 — Go, go, go,— come, come, come.

22 — There it falls — ^now ita gone.

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23 — Now the hajl is sinking-
How it*s rising up to me,

Sinking— rising ;

Sinking— rising,
Tell me, children, as it flies,
How the ball can sink and rise.

Then let the child sink and rise, and use the same words for it.

24— Find the ball

25— Pull, pull, puU,

now it*8 yours.

26— The ball may be twirled round and round,
on a double string.

27 — If the ball accidentally rolls away, a ganje
may be made, thus: fg.

See the ball, it's roUing yonder.
From your hands it likes to wander.

The ball without the string may be used as follows:

28 — Open your hands ; take in the balL

29 — Now close your hands^the baU seeks rest

30 — Open your hands, the baU awakes.

31 — Close your hands— the baU now rests.

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After the first jeea^form and color can be taken into consideration
and comparisons may be made, thus: The red ball is like a rose, an
apple; the yellow ball is like the sun, or a lemon ; the green ball is like
the grass, etc.


32— When the play is finished and the ball
put away in the box, the following may be
spoken or sung:

Now it joins its little sisteis,

And will stay at rest:
Close the lid, close baby's eyelids,

Pat him in his nest.

33— When the child grows older, new ideas must be added as, for

Baise the baU — sink it down ;
Baise the heels— sink them down ;
Baise the arms— sink them down ;
Move your right leg up and down ;
Move your left leg up and down ;
Now stand straight— now bend down.

34 — Take the ball and swing it round ;

Swing your arms now, round and round.

Here the song of the windmill may be introduced:

See the windmill, how it goes,
While the wind so briskly blows,
Always turning round and round.
Never idle is it found.

35 — To and fro the ball is swinging,

Like the church-bell slowly ringing;
Now it's taming round and round,
Like the wheel upon the ground.

To and fro my arm I swing,
Now I turn it in a ring.

And whatever the ball can do
I can try and so may you.

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36 — The so-called master-game may be played, thus: The child
throws the ball upwards once, and, by catching it, becomes an appren-
tice; by throwing it up twice and catching it each time successively,
becomes an assistant; by catching the ball ^Aree times, without missing,
becomes a master ; the last accomplishment may be accompanied by
the following words:

Once, twice, thrice —

This is very nice.

37— Game No. 27 may be further developed by passing the ball from
one child^s hands to those of the next, and so on, using the words:

Near and far the ball will wander,
Till it comes from roving yonder.

It is bright, it is fair,
It can wander every-where.

38— This may then be changed so as to include the name of a


Near and far will Harry wander,
TiU he comes from roving yonder.

He is young, he is fair,
He can wander every-where.

39— Or :

Near and far we all will wander, etc.

40 — Another game may be made by holding the ball with both


The boU is beautiful and bright.

And round and soft and smalL
I look upon it with delight—

My darling, darling balL
41- Or:

The darUng ball is sleeping
Fast in my hands, below,
And while at it Fm peeping,
m rock it to and fro.
42- The ball is moving here and there;

'Twould like to play.

And roll away,
But safe 111 keep it in my care.

Moving— rolHng —

Moving— rolling —
Near and far it's ever strolling.
Oh, the baU I love to see,
For it always pleases me.

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43 — The red ball moves now here, now there,

'Twould like to play,

And roll away,
Bat safe 111 keep it in my care.
Moving— rolling, moving — rolling.
Forward— backward, forward — backward,
Up and down, up and down,
Oh, the ball I love to see.
For it always pleases me.

The movement ball-games are the proper play-material for the kin-
dergarten, as, for instance: The huntsman, dog and hare, the birds'-
nest, etc.

44— Teach the children the following exercise : Let them stand in
one or two rows and say, **lifl your rigid hands up— sink them down,"
let them do the same with the left hands, and then with both hands.
Then the children are told to stretch out the right hand, a ball is
given and acknowledged by ''thank you'* (a little lesson in politeness),
and questions follow as to qualities, color, etc. ; let them next repeat

Online LibraryMrs. Maria Kraus-BoelteThe kindergarten guide. An illustrated hand-book, designed for the self-instruction of kindergartners, mothers, and nurses → online text (page 1 of 25)