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The total number of kindergartens reported to the Office for the present year is 417, with 945 instructors and 21,640 pupils. This shows very little change from the report of 1884–85, due probably to the inperfect returns received.
As far as reported the manner of support of each kindergarten has been tabulated this year, giving 128 supported by tuition, 118 by public funds, and 121 by charity.
CHARITY KINDERGARTENS, A great part of the work is still carried on by charity, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, and Philadelphia taking the lead in establishing and maintaining free kindergartens.
in San Francisco, under the care of four associations, 22 kindergartens are supported, one society alope, the Goldeu Gate Association, having 933 children under its care.
Chicago has a free kindergarten association with 13 kindergiertens for the present year and a free training class for teachers with 45 pupils, whose graduates teach in the free kindergartens.
In Boston, Mrs. Quincy A. Shaw, by whose generosity the cause in that city received its greatest impulse, supports 18 kindergartens.
Under the Subprimary School Society in Philadelphia there are 29 kindergartens supported by charity and public funds combined.
Cincinnati has 6 charity kindergartens, Indianapolis 4, and Portland, Oregon, 4, each under the care of an association having for its object the establishinent of free kindergartens and the training of teachers for this work.
Kindergarten departments have been established in several institutions for the blind and the deaf and dumb, in orphan asylums and schools for the feeble mindeel, were their effects are most beneficial, bringing joy and comfort to many a little heart shut out from much of this world's happiness.
PUBLIC KINDERGARTENS. The work of making the kindergarten a part of our public-school system is only a question of time. The most eminent educators of the day recognize a111 indorso its principles and methods, and only the expense involved prevents its becoming at once the lowest grade of the public schools of our leading cities.
According to the latest reports now in this Office, in St. Louis all children receive one year of kindergarten instruction before entering the primary schools, and some of the features of the kindergarten are carried into the first year's primary work, thus making a natural transition from the kindergarten to the school.
Milwaukee has 10 public kindergartens; Ionia, Mich., 3; and Muskegon, in the same State, 4, while Des Moines, Iowa, bas supported 2 for the last two years.
In Philadelphia part of the kindergartens under the Subprimary School Societs are in public-school buildings and supported by public funds, and Superintendent MacAlister says: “Philadelphia can no longer afford to be withont the kindergarten." Steps are being taken to make it a part of the public-school system.
The superintendent of schools, Springfield, Mass., in a report on introducing kindergartens into public schools, says: “Those who have studied the system and observed its results generally concede the following: “1. The children trained by it are more submissive to school discipline;
“2. They are more intelligent, more exact observers, and grasp ideas more readily than others;
*3. They make greater progress in school work, especially in arithmetic, drawing, the sciences, and in the use of language to express their own ideas;
“4. This kind of training, better than any other, leads directly to industrial edu. cation.
“The impression usually left upon the mind of any careful observer by a group of kindergarten children is that they are very cheerful, intelligent, active, and exceedingly fond of school work. None but those of rare qualifications can succeed as teachers in this work. Indeed, it would seem that a kind of instinct and a genius for teaching, as well as careful training, are here necessary for the highest success. But in the hands of a teacher of such endowments the kindergarten, whether judged in reference to its principles and philosophy or its results, is probably one of the most successful educational agencies ever put in practice.
An attempt to introduce this system at once into all our primary schools would meet with two objections, the first of which is the large expense necessary to provide additional rooms, appliances and material, furniture and teachers. Then, as a second objection, there is the difficulty of obtaining a sufficient number of well-qualified teachers, one of the greatest obstacles everywhere to the success of the kindergarten.”
Though the outlook is not as encouraging as could be wished, the advocates of the cause are not disheartened, for they feel that, though its growth is slow, there is a growing appreciation of its principles from year to year, and that the day is not far distant when kindergartens will be open to every child in our land.
Meanwhile many of the kindergarten methods and occupations are being introduced into our primary schools; teachers are becoming imbued with their principles, thereby bringing more love and happiness into the school-room, and when the time is ripe for their adoption they will undonbtedly be welcomed by all.
KINDERGARTEN TRAINING SCHOOLS. The kindergarten training schools, heretofore classed with private normal schools, have this year, for convenience of reference, been placed in a table by themselves. As far as reported there are 41 schools, with 67 instructors and 452 pupils. Several of these classes are in connection with public normal schools, while Des Moines, Iowa, Muskegon, Mich., and St. Louis, Mo., each support a public training class.
The demand is increasing yearly for trained kindergartners, not only to take charge of pure kindergartens, but to fill positions in the primary and lower grades of our public schools.
In several normal schools where the full training is not given the classes are permitted to observe in a kindergarten and are instructed in the games and some of the occupations, showing the gradual appreciation by school officers of the methods and principles of the system.
TABLE 20.-Summary of statistics of kindergartens.
TABLE 20.-Summary of statistics of kindergartens-Continued.
TABLE 21.-Summary of statistics of kindergarten training schools.