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Large Kindergarten Classroom, School 24, Rochester, c. 1900

Education. Large Kindergarten Classroom
New York State Archives, NYSA_A3045-78_A4191
 
Document Description
A large kindergarten classroom at School 24 in Rochester, New York, circa 1900.
 
Questions
What are the parts of the kindergarten classroom? 
What parts are the same as today’s kindergarten classroom? 
What parts are different? 
What do you think was better about kindergarten classrooms then?  What is better now?
 
Historical Challenges
In what year was the first free kindergarten opened in the United States. Who could attend?
 
Interdisciplinary Connections
English Language Arts: Create a T-chart showing the differences and similarities of this classroom and the classroom in the photograph titled "Kindergarten Class."
 
Resources
Jennings, Peter, Jennifer Armstrong, Todd Brewster, and Katherine Bourbeau. The Century for Young People. Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers, September 1999. ISBN: 0385327080
DK Publishing. Children's History of the 20th Century. DK Publishing, Inc., August 1999. ISBN: 0789447223
McGovern, Ann. If You Lived 100 Years Ago. Scholastic, Inc., August 1999. ISBN: 0590960016
 

Historical Context
The philosophy of kindergarten was established by Friedrich Froebel in Germany in the 1830s. He thought that kindergarten children could learn and grow best by having time to play and to interact with other children. Kindergartens were first established as private schools for upper class children.  By the end of the nineteenth century, kindergartens were found in the public schools and were seen as a way to help the children of immigrants and the poor.  The first free public kindergarten class was in Queens, New York.
 
Essential Question
How does culture influence a society's education system?
 
Check for Understanding
Describe the scene in the photograph and identify key characteristics of the American education system during this time period.