Revisiting Friedrich Froebel and his Gifts for Kindergarten: What are the benefits for primary mathematics education?

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This paper provides historical insights and educational background of Froebel’s Gifts,hands-on materials developed in the early 19th century. Based on an explorative study with 54 German children (aged 5 to 10) in 2016, we first took steps to explore how these materials meet the demands for early mathematics learning of primary children. Starting with a brief introduction into the work and life of Friedrich Froebel, we outline how using Froebel’s Gifts can stimulate the acquisition of mathematical knowledge and abilities, then conclude by considering future research directions within Australian schools.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication40 years on: We are still learning!
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 40th Annual Conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia
EditorsAnn Downton, Sharyn Livy, Jennifer Hall
Place of PublicationMelbourne
PublisherMathematics Education Research Group of Australasia
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781920846305
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventAnnual conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia 2017 - Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 2 Jul 20176 Jul 2017
Conference number: 40th (Proceedings)


ConferenceAnnual conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia 2017
Abbreviated titleMERGA 2017
Internet address


  • primary
  • early years
  • mathematics
  • hands-on
  • geometry
  • geometric reasoning
  • spatial reasoning

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