1873- The first free kindergarten opens in St. Louis Missouri

August 26, 2022

On August 26, 1873, Susan Blow opened the first free Kindergarten in St. Louis, Missouri. And soon after, kindergarten classrooms across the country started using Blow's classroom as an education model. By 1879, the St. Louis school system had 53 kindergarten rooms.

At the time of inauguration, his model classrooms were bright and cheerful, while other classrooms were rather plain. The model kindergarten had short benches and low tables; children learned about shapes, color, and fractions using simple objects such as balls and blocks.

Students also learned about neatness, healthy eating, and regular exercise.

Since Susan Blow had worked tirelessly to realize the educational transition, she soon became sick and retired in 1884. She started traveling more to improve her health, leaving St. Louis in 1889. While living In New York and Boston, she wrote books and gave lectures about the kindergarten movement.

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