Gift Four: from ages 4 to 13 years; or children in Kindergarten, Connecting School and Academy.
"From a child's point of view, it is important that the next Gift presented is recognized by him as 'the new in the old' so that he becomes aware of the developmental processes which are to be found in the world and in life." Quoted from: A Child's Work By: Joachim Liebschner pg. 89.
Gift Four has several key considerations that Froebel emphasized when he designed the set of eight oblong wooden blocks in a box. They are:
1. Whatever has occured before in a Gift must be the basis of the new one. This emphasizes the concepts on the child's level of comprehension.
2. Every new Gift that is introduced the child must be a complete whole unto itself and at the same time part of even a larger whole.
3. Education is a matter of expressing what is known, by internalizing what is new and externalizing these thoughts through repeated play.
Gift Four is introduced to the child as their old friend cube, but this cube is different. New shapes, new math concepts, vocabulary, and designs are introduced. When Gifts Three and Four are combined, even more elaborate building can occur.
With the Building Gifts, Froebel introduced his divisions of forms. After free-play has occured, children in the kindergarten phase of 4 to 7 years old, learn different concepts. They begin with what is known and move onto what is unknown. They are: Forms of Life, Forms of Beauty, and Forms of Knowledge.
Forms of Life represent tangible objects in the child's world, such as buildings, furniture etc. It is social studies for young children.
Forms of Beauty lead the child to observe and be aware of their beautiful surroundings. Patterns, running forms, and symmetrical designs are found in the built and natural world and are replicated by the child on this small scale.
Forms of Knowledge introduce the child to the worlds of math and science. Following directions, counting, experimenting with weight and heights are all explored.