The programme of five courses is designed to help participants understand the theories which underpin the Froebelian framework, and use them to inform their own practice.
Friedrich Froebel was a German pedagogue born in 1782 whose early education theories for children up to the age of eight now form the approach which bears his name.
The series of courses features a mandatory two-day introduction to the fundamental Froebelian principles and their relevance to current practice, plus any combination of an optional four further two-day courses.
The four optional courses explore aspects of other Froebelian topics in more detail.
The subjects of the optional courses include:
- Froebel’s principles of the ‘Gifts’ (six sets of cubes, similar to modern wooden blocks) and the ‘Occupations’ (workshop experiences), in which Froebelian concepts are explored in relation to block play and Froebel’s view that natural or recycled materials and connections with everyday life experiences and community have educational value;
- the importance of engaging with nature and outdoor learning;
- play and the symbolic life of the child;
- lullabies and family songs, finger plays, action songs and movement games.
The courses will be delivered in settings by two of the Froebel Trust’s team of ‘Travelling Froebel Tutors’, including Stella Louis, Kathryn Solly and Sally Cave.
After the first day of each course, practitioners will be given a task which they must complete in the month that follows, and then discuss at the second day which will take place a month later.
The pilot of the courses, run by Professor Tina Bruce with Yellow Dot Nurseries, was written up in a six-part series in Nursery World.
Jane Dyke, founder and owner of Yellow Dot said, ‘The Froebel pilot course reignited my passion for early years. It has helped me to articulate the “why”, and deepen my understanding of child development. The course has enabled me to lead my team with clearer pedagogical principles, tighter focus and greater enthusiasm.’
Beatrice Merrick, chief executive of Early Education, said, ‘We are excited to be partnering with the Froebel Trust to deliver this carefully developed programme of courses. We know that practitioners will welcome the opportunity to reflect on their practice and embed core Froebelian principles in their provision.
'As two charities with very similar values and aims, we want to bring high quality affordable professional development opportunities to early years practitioners wherever they are in the country, and the Travelling Froebel Tutors will do exactly that.’