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Call for papers: International Perspectives on Froebelian Theory and Practice
International Froebel Society Conference
Froebel College of Education, Dublin
Thursday April 12 – Saturday April 14 2012

International Perspectives on Froebelian Theory and Practice The goal is to bring together educators, carers, academics, researchers and others interested in the education and welfare of children, adolescents and adults in an interdisciplinary discussion about the development of Froebel’s educational philosophy.

The theme of the conference is the international spread of the kindergarten and Froebelian theory and practice. Like any other movement in education, the take up of Froebel’s ideas and practices across the globe has been uneven. This has been due to the differing circumstances and contexts in which their reception took place. Variations occurred as adaptations to local cultures took place. The one constant that gives the kindergarten an almost universal quality is the emphasis on the importance of early childhood experiences in shaping later life and that those experiences must include play. Moreover, education through play is the touchstone of the Froebel approach.

Speakers include:
Dr. Glenda Walsh, Stranmillis University College, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Dr Kristen D. Nawrotzki, Paedagogische Hochschule, Heidelberg, Germany
Prof. Yumiko Suzuki, Graduate School of Education, Hiroshima University, Japan
Prof. Helen May, Otago University, New Zealand
Prof. Larry Prochner, University of Alberta, Canada

Proposals for papers are welcome on the following themes:

  • The spread of the kindergarten from its Thuringian heartland.
  • The reception of the kindergarten in specific countries.
  • Current assessments of the state of Froebelian theory and practice in selected countries.
  • Threats to the kindergarten and play based-education posed by standards based and other hostile policies.
  • Is the kindergarten universal or must it always be adapted to suit local conditions?
  • Music in early years settings.
  • Art and self-representation in the kindergarten.
  • The education and preparation of kindergarten teachers in different societies.
  • The Froebelian tradition in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.
  • The role and reception of new technologies in the kindergarten in different societies.
  • An open stream for all other Froebelian related research.


A proposal can be submitted for individual paper presentation; self-organised symposium (groups may propose to organise 3 papers and a moderator around a common theme as a full session); poster presentation; video presentation: (these can be submitted on DVD or through file transfer – Dropbox etc. – Presentations of aspects of practice are particularly welcome); workshops: practical demonstrations of children engaged in play-based learning.

The papers at the IFS conferences are both historical and contemporary, reflecting the interests of the researchers in the field. Presenters of historical perspectives should make reference to the significance and the relevance of their research to current policies and practices where appropriate.


Your proposal should include:

  • The title of the presentation,
  • The type of presentation;
  • The name/s and institution of the presenter/s;
  • Mailing address;
  • E-mail address;
  • A 250-word abstract (addressing the theme, identifying relevant conference strands, the aims of the research, theoretical and conceptual framework, methodology, and main findings);
  • Audiovisual requirements;
  • Four keywords for listing purposes.

Send all paper proposals as an email attachment to:

Submission by Friday November 4, 2011

CFP – International Perspectives on Froebelian Theory and Practice