For Immediate Release August 27, 2001

A Children's Garden: Froebel's Creative Learning Opens September 4, 2001 at GRAM

The Grand Rapids Art Museum will kick-off its new Children's Interactive Gallery, A Children's Garden: Froebel's Creative Learning, with an open house for children and their families September 4 from 3:30 to 5:00 pm. This is a free event.

Friedrich Froebel (1782 - 1852) was a German educator who believed that all children were creative and that they could learn art, design structure, and math by discovering these elements in nature. This method of learning became the basis of Kindergarten and the Montessori style of learning. Frank Lloyd Wright, Paul Klee, Piet Mondrian, Wassily Kandinsky and many other artists were taught using the Froebel method, which is evident in their art.

In A Children's Garden exhibition, kids of all ages will be able to design a light screen (what Frank Lloyd Wright called his leaded glass windows), construct a prairie-style home, create nature-inspired designs through patterns, color and geometric shapes, and see how students from 1900 learned with Froebel "gifts" or lessons. This exhibition is designed to complement the upcoming exhibition, Light Screens: The Leaded Glass of Frank Lloyd Wright which opens October 12. Karen Cunningham, Education Director of the Grand Rapids Art Museum conceived of the exhibition and Grand Designs manufactured it. Kenneth Wells provided the murals.

Uncle Goose Toys, a local company who is the only manufacturer of Froebel toys in the United States, provided all of the archival material for the exhibition. Scott Bultman, president of Uncle Goose Toys, will be at the open house to explain how the Froebel "gifts" work and the rich history of this learning method.

The Children's Interactive Gallery is located on the lower level of GRAM. The Grand Rapids Art Museum builds community strength and enhances the quality of life through art.


Images and photo opportunities available. Contact Kristen Corrado, Public Relations Manager, at 616-831-2910,

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Copyright 2001-2008 Scott Bultman Grand Rapids, MI 49534