Get out your crayons and flash cards — it’s time for National Kindergarten Day!
April 21 is the birthday of the German educator Friedrich Fröbel, who founded the first play and activity institute called kindergarten in 1837. (Kindergarten’s actually a mid-19th century German word literally meaning “children’s garden.”) But you already knew that.
According to Fröbel, young children should follow their own interests and freely explore them. That’s why kindergartens include singing, dancing, and creative play.
We need to find our nap mat just thinking about it.
National Kindergarten Day timeline
Mississippi went to kindergarten
This state was the last to create a public kindergarten program. Before 1982, only 45 percent of Mississippi children who began first grade finished the twelfth grade.
President Johnson's "War on Poverty" led to the Head Start program — designed to help communities meet the needs of disadvantaged preschool children.
Followers of Fröbel established a college of teacher education in London to continue his traditions.
Friedrich Fröbel coined the word kindergarten for the play and activity institute he had founded for young children.
National Kindergarten Day Activities
Appreciate your child's kindergarten teacher
They can make a lifelong impression on your kids.
Volunteer to help at a kindergarten
Opportunities might exist for parents to take part in classroom activities.
Read about Friedrich Fröbel
He was a visionary whose philosophy can teach every parent how they can help children stay creative and curious.
4 Things To Consider During Naptime
Kindergarteners in the U.S.
About 3.5 million students enroll in kindergarten every year!
Different states, different rules
Nearly all states require school districts to provide some form of kindergarten, but only 18 require attendance.
Kindergarten age requirements
Kids in most states start at age five. New York, New Jersey, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania will admit certain students before their fifth birthday.
The Prussian government once banned it
Friedrich Fröbel's idea was considered so unorthodox that the Prussian government banned it for some time. However, the idea spread to Europe and the rest of the word.
Why We Love National Kindergarten Day
Kindergartens encourage children to express themselves artistically.
It fuels a child's curiosity
Curiosity and interest-driven learning are at the heart of kindergarten teaching.
Kindergartens foster independence
Putting away your belongings, turning in your work, and tying your shoelaces are small but big things children learn along the way.
National Kindergarten Day dates