If you have been following facebook you will have read a little about my long awaited trip to Reggio Emilia. It was a wonderful experience to spend time reading the documentation of the teachers, to watch videos of the children learning and exploring and of course to see the extensive range of resources used to inspire and provoke discovery.
below is a little more information about Reggio
What is the Reggio Emilia Approach?
The Reggio Emilia Approach is an innovative and inspiring approach to early education which values the child as strong, capable and resilient. The belief is that every child brings with them a deep curiosity and potential and it is this innate curiosity that drives their interest to understand their world and their place within it.
The Reggio Emilia Approach originated in the town and the surrounding areas and came from a desire and movement, from parents, teachers and the community, towards progressive and cooperative early education. This historical perspective is valued and documented widely in literature about Reggio.
The Reggio Emilia Approach is not a method, one cannot be ‘trained’ in the method. It is an approach which is ever changing and developing, even in Reggio.
Settings outside of Reggio Emilia, choosing to use the ‘Approach,’ will be Reggio-inspired. They must contextualise the approach to the needs of the community, families, children and teachers who use the setting. No two settings can be the same.
Here are some of the major principles of the Reggio Approach;
- The Environment
Encourages collaboration, exploration and communication
Resources respect children as autonomous, capable and independent so provides authentic tools and resources.
Must be beautifully arranged
Must be provoking
Must include natural materials for investigation
- The Adult
To document, this is a key part of the adult role. Through careful listening the adult can make visible the child’s thinking and understanding of the world
To discover and support the child’s interest
To repropose interests and topics which are child-led and project based. These projects extend over days and weeks.
- The hundred languages of the child. This is probably one of the most well-known aspects of Reggio. It is the belief that children communicate their understanding of the world in a hundred different ways. Children need a wide variety of resources to enable this and adults should support these ways.
The hundred languages must be valued and nurtured.