Kindergarten (help·info) (German, literally means "children's garden"), also known as Kindergarden by some individuals, is a form of education for young children that serves as a transition from home to the commencement of more formal schooling. Another definition, which overlaps with early childhood education andpreschool, is education for pre- and emergent-literate children before the age of six or seven. Children are taught to develop basic skills and knowledge through creative play and social interaction, as well as sometimes formal lessons.
In most countries kindergarten is part of the preschool system of early childhood education. Children usually attend kindergarten any time between the ages of two and seven years, depending on the local custom.
In the United States and anglophone Canada, as well as in parts of Australia (New South Wales, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory) kindergarten is the word often restricted in use to describe the first year of education, or primary school. In some of these countries it is compulsory, that is parents must send children to their kindergarten year (generally, at age five).
In the United States, many states widely offer a free kindergarten year to children of five to six years of age, but do not make it compulsory, while other states require all five-year-olds to enroll. The terms preschool or ...