Maria Kraus-Boelté (1836 - 1918) was a pioneer of Froebel education in the United States, and helped promote kindergarten training as suitable for study at university level. Friedrich Wilhelm August Froebel (also written Fröbel ( April 21, 1782 &ndash June 21, 1852) laid the foundation for modern Education The United States of America —commonly referred to as the ( German, literally means "children's garden" is a form of education for young children which serves as a transition from home to the commencement of more formal schooling
Born to a prosperous family in Hagenow, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, on November 8, 1836, Maria Boelte was privately educated. Hagenow (ˈhaːgəno is a German municipality in the southwest of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, in the district of Ludwigslust, 30 kilometers south Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a Duchy (from 1815 a Grand duchy) in northern Germany, formed by a partition of the Duchy of Mecklenburg. She became interested in Froebel education and trained with Luise Froebel (Froebel's widow) in Hamburg, before teaching for four years in an English kindergarten run by one of Froebel's own pupils, Berthe von Rönge. Hamburg (English, German: ˈhambʊɐk local pronunciation Low German / Low Saxon: Hamborg) is the second-largest city in Germany England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Some of her pupils' work was exhibited at the 1862 London International Exhibition. Expo (short for "exposition" and also known as World Fair and World's Fair) is the name given to various large public exhibitions held since the She returned to Hamburg in 1867, then opened her own kindergarten in Lübeck. Lübeck ( is the second largest City in Schleswig-Holstein, in Northern Germany, and one of the major
In 1872 she was invited by Elizabeth Peabody to work in New York where she established a kindergarten class and training program for mothers. Elizabeth Palmer Peabody ( May 16, 1804 - January 3, 1894) was an American educator who opened the first English-language Kindergarten New York ( is a state in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States and is the nation's third most populous She got to know her future husband, Prof. John Kraus, an assistant at the National Bureau of Education with whom she had previously corresponded. The National Bureau of Education was a small unit in the General Government of the United States. In 1873 they opened a Seminary for Kindergartners alongside a model kindergarten class, the Normal Training Kindergarten, and published The Kindergarten Guide (two volumes, 1877; new edition, 1905) for "the Self-instruction of Kindergartners, mothers, and nurses. "
The Seminary was an early center for Froebel's ideas in the US, and had considerable influence, especially because of Kraus-Boelte's personal connection with Luise Froebel. Hundreds of teachers completed the training of one year's course work followed by one year's practice teaching; thousands of children passed through the kindergarten.
Kraus died in 1896 and Maria Kraus-Boelte continued the work alone. She was president of the Kindergarten Department of the National Education Association in 1899-1890 and three years later persuaded the New York University School of Education to include the first ever college level course in kindergarten education in their summer program. The National Education Association ( NEA) is the largest professional organization in the United States, representing Public school Teachers and New York University ( NYU) is a private, Nonsectarian, Coeducational Research University in New York City. Kraus-Boelte herself taught this course three times. She retired in 1913 and died on November 1, 1918 in Atlantic City. Her grave is in Woodlawn Cemetery, New York.
Some of her work is in the archives of the Association of Childhood Education International:
The Cincinnati Kindergarten Association has some of her lesson plans and other papers.