Reggio Emilia Approach
The Reggio Emilia approach was started by Loris Malaguzzi and parents in the villages around Reggio Emilia in Italy following the devastating effects of World War II.
After the war, parents and educators sought a new approach to teaching their children based on the idea that a child’s early years of development have a significant impact on who they become in later life.
With this as their foundation they created a program built on the principles of respect, responsibility, and community. Through exploration and discovery in a supportive and enriching environment based on the interests of the children through a self-guided curriculum. Children must have some control over the direction of their learning.
The curriculum is developed by observing the children and planning according to their interests and their needs. Children must be able to learn through experiences of touching, moving, listening, seeing, and hearing.
Children learn through doing. We keep this in mind when designing the curriculum and plan activities that the children can explore hands-on. Children have a relationship with other children and with material items in the world that children must be allowed to explore.
Children learn a lot through interactions with their peers and should be encouraged to socialize and collaborate with each other.
The environment is the third teacher. After parents and educators, the environment should be set up with rich, open-ended materials that the children can manipulate, experiment, and explore. Children must have endless ways and opportunities to express themselves.
Children are encouraged to express their feelings, ideas, and emotions through a variety of mediums, including dance and music, art (painting, drawing, sculpture, etc.), storytelling, dramatic play, and more!