Kindergarten was created by Friedrich Froebel in the 1830s and grew to become what is now one of the most familiar shared milestones throughout the world. Froebel's kindergarten involved play with so-called "gifts," a series of educational toys, including building blocks, parquetry tiles, origami papers, modeling clay, sewing kits and other design projects, intended to foster curiosity and teach young children about art, design, mathematics and the natural world.
For more teaching aids and early concertina books, visit The Institute for Figuring’s online exhibit, Inventing Kindergarten.
photo: Astonishingly intricate paper weaving workbook by Ms. F. Wegerich, Germany, c. 1880. Very fine strips of paper woven into complex patterns- 19th century predecessors to the digital revolution.