Froebelian Education

Our Inspiration

Our Froebelian ethos is fundamental to everything we do at Annan.  It informs our planning, is central to the atmosphere in school and the relationships we value.  We believe that children learn by doing which Froebel called the ‘self-activity’ of the child.  Children learn through worthwhile educational experiences, supported by adults. Children need to discover for themselves in order to deepen their learning. We aim to provide an holistic education as envisaged by Froebel. We recognise each child as an individual and use informed observation of children to support effective development, learning and teaching. Froebel understood the true value of childhood.  An understanding that a child should be allowed to grow at his own pace and should never be rushed or hurried in his development. Froebel said “at every stage be that stage”. Froebel designed a series of materials and activities that he called gifts and occupations to enhance their creative powers and abilities.

Learning through nature was a central part of Froebel’s philosophy. Outdoor Learning and Forest School are an integral part of school life for every child at Annan and these along with gardening and other activities develop children’s spirituality through regular opportunities for awe and wonder outside.

We believe in educating children to believe in themselves and reach their own unique potential. Relationships are really important to our ethos and we work hard to ensure children learn to respect each other, adults and the world around them. We work to develop children’s intrinsic motivation, so do not use extrinsic rewards which are external to the child. We value and celebrate each child’s achievements with genuine praise and appreciation. Debby and Mark Hunter, school principals, are members of the Froebel Travelling Tutors Network and Mark Hunter currently sits on the Froebel Education Committee and runs the UK Froebel Teacher Network. Professor Tina Bruce has close links with the school, she opened the Infant garden and is Patron of the school’s supporter’s group “Friends of Annan School”.

Froebel's voice

But I will protect childhood … I shall show the way and shape the means, that every human soul may grow of itself out of its own individuality.”

Children are like tiny flowers; they are varied and need care, but each is beautiful alone and glorious when seen in the community of peers”          

Friedrich Froebel

Comments from Professor Tina Bruce

“The emphasis on learning initially through real, direct, first hand experiences, which are then built on and extended by the teachers is exemplary. There is real quality in the learning and the teaching.  The focus on nature and practical work in the delightful classrooms (which are set out to beckon children to learn more), is very heartening.

I feel that this is the way that all schools should be, and I would have sent my children to this school.  I cannot give higher praise than that.

I see Annan School as a beacon of high quality learning.”

Honorary Professor Tina Bruce, University of Roehampton on visiting the school in 2011