Reggio Emilia

On a recent visit to Reggio Emilia I experienced first hand the importance of community influence,  collaborative learning,  children having influence and ownership of their learning (learning in context), the importance of qualified teachers with a strong pedagogy and the value placed on children.

Practices that we use that have been influenced by this approach are

  • Acknowledging children’s rights to have an influence on their learning.   Children are able to express themselves in small groups at morning meetings about what they would like to further explore and what questions they would like answered.  We do not simply answer the questions but encourage children to explore and challenge their hypotheses, share information and become actively involved in researching and exploring their ideas. Encouraging children to learn how to learn is at the core of teaching. We see our role as educators to be collaborative in this  learning experience and to be able to be sensitive to  ‘listening to and actually hearing children’.
  • The value of reciprocal and respectful relationships.  We honour our children and  acknowledge their rights and identity. We continually support children’s social and emotional intelligence in our daily program.
  • We acknowledge that children learn and construct knowledge in many different ways and acknowledge this in our practices.
  • We believe in the rights of the child. We see that the right for all children to have access to early childhood education is paramount. We are inspired by the Reggio approach to take ownership of our community, not just the families that attend the preschool. By looking beyond our walls we can support children that need further support.  We have a program that provides parent and child education outside of our centre and works collaboratively with other support agencies to make this effective and beneficial for those involved.
  • The importance of teachers with strong pedagogy.  We see this as paramount to our centre.  We aim to increase knowledge, support staff and upgrade professional learning. Like Reggio Emilia we acknowledge and are supported  by the early childhood research done by  theorists such as Bronfenbrenner, Bruner, Piaget, Dewy,  Frobel, Gardner,  Vygotsky, Malaguuzzi and many others. 

(Kindamindi Preschool -Inverell)