[n.p. n.d.,, ca. 1890]. The samples collected here demonstrate a remarkable level of skill, precision, and aesthetic understanding. While similar Froebel Gift albums demonstrate basic or intermediate execution of the Gifts — understandably, as they were used by children — these albums showcase this student’s rare expertise and artistry. With twenty samples of Froebel gift fourteen (paper-weaving) executed in red and black glossy paper on rectos. Also with thirteen samples of gift twelve (sewing/embroidery) in over a dozen colors of thread. Some wear to extremities. Leaves are bound together with brown cloth strips at edges. Block of leaves loose within album. Some offsetting from thread, as usual. A very good example of an unusually attractive and skillfully made Froebel gift album. Accordion bound in the original black cloth album. 8 x 11 in.  ff. Item #17242
Twenty of these “Gifts” made up the kindergarten curriculum of Friedrich Froebel (1782 – 1852). The curriculum comprised “an education that began, not with numbers and alphabets, but with colors, shapes, and patterns referred to as Froebel Gifts,” (Ricco/Maresca). The Gifts included projects in cutting, weaving, origami, needlework, all following Froebel’s curriculum of learning through play and creativity. Milton Bradley published the first American book on the kindergarten, Paradise of Childhood, in 1869 and within the next few years was publishing these Froebel Gifts, teaching kits, kindergarten manuals, newsletters, and children’s books. Many other publishers followed suit in the next decade. These publications came in the wake of milestones like the first English-language kindergarten in the United States, which was founded by Elizabeth Palmer Peabody (1804 – 1894) in Boston in 1860.
Brosterman, Norman. Inventing Kindergarten (1997). Froebel Web Timeline. Ricco/Maresca Kindergarten Exhibition (2012). Also see Century of the Child: Growing by Design, 1900-2000 (MOMA Exhibition, 2012).