By Larry Prochner

ISBN-10: 0774807717

ISBN-13: 9780774807715

Exploring early early life care and schooling in Canada, this article discusses key matters similar to: what programmes can be found to oldsters and what are their origins?; how have adults been ready to paintings in those programmes?; and what guidelines consultant the programmes?

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Across the harbour from Dartmouth, the Halifax Board of School Commissioners first discussed introducing kindergartens in 1888, the same year that the province made attendance at school compulsory for children aged seven to fourteen. A kindergarten opened three years later in 1891. By the next year there was a kindergarten in almost every school in the city. Children who were one year younger than compulsory school age were eligible to attend, but large numbers of children younger than six years old also attended.

By the end of the decade, almost all schools under the Protestant Board had kindergarten departments. The key development in the 1890s was the division of the wide age range in the Preparatory Class into three separate levels: Kindergarten (age five), Preparatory Class (age six), and Transition Class (age seven). The Kindergarten and Preparatory Classes were not required, but were recommended “for the benefit of very young children who are unable to enter upon the regular First year work” (PBSCCM 1899, 6-7).

In Victoria, kindergartens were originally planned for children of mothers employed in war work. m. m. The plan was abandoned when the province offered to finance kindergartens as an alternative to the federal wartime day nursery plan. One historian who studied the issue observed that the unusual plan showed “no real understanding or commitment to provision of preschool classes on the part of the Department of Education or the Boards themselves” (Weiss 1976, 49). The kindergartens continued after the war, but on their original limited basis, serving just 1 percent of eligible preschool children in British Columbia by 1948 (Weiss 1976, 52).

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Early Childhood Care and Education in Canada by Larry Prochner


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