Cowgate Under 5s is the National Hub for Froebelian childcare in Scotland, and the lead practice partner for Froebelian Futures. We are supporting the programme by hosting practitioners and policy-makers from a variety of contexts to showcase and deepen our practice; by developing child-led research projects into a range of issues, including participation itself; and by sharing experiences and practice through our Mobile Play Cafe.

On a day-to-day basis, Cowgate provides childcare without age segregation through the City of Edinburgh Council. Our work is based on continuous dialogue about child and community-centred practice rooted in Froebelian ideas. Our primary concern is always the wellbeing, happiness and holistic development of each individual child in the Centre, providing the support necessary to lead them to care for themselves and each other and to adopt a caring attitude towards the environment that surrounds us. Our children’s expressions shape our work from top to bottom, and we acknowledge their expertise in every aspect of their lives.

The University of Edinburgh is the lead training and research partner for Froebelian Futures. Our team led by Dr Lynn McNair delivers a series of Froebelian courses, including (1) an introductory programme, (2) training for practitioners to conduct research within daily practice, (3) an MSc in Education focussed on Froebelian and social justice theories, and (4) a brand new Froebelian Leadership programme for 2022-23.

In addition, our team conducts a wide range of research, outreach and policy-shaping projects, influenced by Froebelian concerns. These include work on inclusive family spaces, on racial equality in early years and on children’s geographies and child-centred participation.

For more information, visit our training pages, check out our toolkits, and browse our own research or the research produced by practitioners we train within our Inspiration Directory.

The Froebel Trust

The Froebel Trust is the lead funder for Froebelian Futures. It is the primary grant making charity in the UK specialising in funding early childhood research, promoting early education and developing Froebelian practice. Our aim is to ensure that the Froebelian framework of principled education and care is recognised, understood, valued and practised across the early childhood sector for the benefit of young children in the UK and internationally. We produce a popular series of pamphlets on Froebelian principles in action, host the Froebel archive, and run courses, webinars and conferences throughout the year.

The Early Childhood Research Policy and Practice Group

The Early Childhood Research Policy and Practice Group at The University of Edinburgh is a new multi-disciplinary collective charting a broad vision for socially just early childhood education in Scotland. It brings together students, researchers, practitioners, academics and policymakers from across the early years sector. It aims to make children’s rights real by strengthening and advancing early childhood research, policy and practice and the way they interconnect. The group keenly supports Froebelian Futures and partners with it in envisioning a long-term national focus on integrative early childhood practice.