Playing with blocks
In 1853 two German refugees, Bertha and Johannes Ronge, opened the first English-speaking Kindergarten on the site of what is now the Seacole Social café in Tavistock Place in Bloomsbury, following a new play-based pedagogy developed by Friedrich Froebel (1782-1852), who Bertha had studied with in Germany. Froebel’s concept of Kindergarten would revolutionise early years education around the world, and the simple wooden building blocks he designed evolved into Lego, Numberblocks and Minecraft. This free audiotour podcast follows a short walking route from the UCL Institute of Education, around Tavistock Square via Tavistock Place, exploring the story of Kindergarten block play through the local buildings and their historical inhabitants such as Charles Dickens, Virginia Woolf and Melanie Klein.
Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9EU