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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Kindergarten goes to the fair: How the World's Fair of 1876 advanced the kindergarten movement in the United States
by Pruett, Elizabeth Cornelius, Ed.D., The University of Alabama at Birmingham, 2013, 117; 3561307
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this historical narrative study was to discover how the World's Fair of 1876 advanced the kindergarten movement in the United States. Historical documents, photographs, and drawings were used as data sources. The following questions guided this study: "What were the purposes of the kindergarten exhibits at the World's Fair?" "Who were the individuals that demonstrated the kindergarten at the first Centennial World's Fair and how did they influence the kindergarten exhibits at the next fair in 1893?" and "How did commercialism associated with the fair affect the kindergarten movement?"

The kindergarten exhibits at the Centennial World's Fair had a profound effect on the way in which Americans viewed the kindergarten. At once viewed as a foreign import, the kindergarten became Americanized and more accepted by the majority of visitors. The fair exhibits also united the kindergarten pioneers in an effort to present an organized exhibit at the World's Fair of 1893. Even though the proliferation of commercialized kindergarten materials exhibited at the Centennial World's Fair often distorted the Froebelian kindergarten pedagogy, these materials increased the public's awareness of the kindergarten movement and all of its benefits.

Keywords: kindergarten, Froebel, Centennial World's Fair, feminism

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Christensen, Lois
Commitee: Emfinger, Kay, Kirkland, Lynn, Kuby, Pat, Manning, Maryann
School: The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Department: Early Childhood Education
School Location: United States -- Alabama
Source: DAI-A 74/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Early childhood education, Education history
Keywords: Centennial World's Fair, Feminism, Froebel, Kindergarten
Publication Number: 3561307
ISBN: 978-1-303-08347-1
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