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Kindergartens (Kindy) in NZ

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Kindergartens, or kindy was first established in New Zealand due to public concern about ‘rowdy street kids’ and ‘waifs and strays’ in the 1880’s.

Early kindergartens in NZ

Two early kindergartens, the Auckland Jubilee Free Kindergarten and the Auckland West Free Kindergarten started in the late 1880’s and were mainly focused on child welfare. The Dunedin Free Kindergarten however, which opened in 1889 in the Mission Hall in Carroll Street, aimed to educate based on the ideas of German educationalist Friedrich Froebel – as well as care for the children of the poor.

A ‘garden for/of children’

In 1837 in Germany, Friedrich Froebel had established a institute based around play and self-activity, a few years later renaming it a ‘kindergarten’. This name signified both a ‘garden for children’ but also a ‘garden of children’.

Froebel devised a curriculum focussed on movement (action circle games), singing games, craft activities, play with geometric toys, and outdoor play. There was a strong emphasis on socially appropriate behaviour through play.

Many of Froebel’s ideas are still a cornerstone in modern day kindergartens.

Kindy kids building houses

If you use ZOOM Pharmacy Sachet Rolls, you will be familiar with our cardboard Sachet Roll Dispenser Box.

When these get manufactured, we get the ‘off-cuts’ from the production process. That means we receive hundreds of pieces of cardboard 120 x 90 mm – perfect to pass onto our kindy friends, who then in turn use them to build houses from.

Kindy Teacher’s House
Charlie’s House with Stairs & Round Table
(aged 4 yrs)

We recently received some photos to share with you, including one house made by one of the teachers (who all got a bit competitive with each other by the sounds of it!). But our favourite has to be Charlie’s aged four, who has included a dining table and set of stairs heading up to his bedroom – very impressive indeed!


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