Glorious butterfly gardens, sparkle painted marmalade jars repurposed as planters, dragonflies created out of wood planks and ceiling fan blades that adorn the garden areas. These attractive art works created by the children are few of the masterpieces that beautify the classrooms and common areas. A young mind can fly thousands of miles to investigate its creative ideas. For example, at Williamsburg Northside Schools, the Reggio Emilia School in Brooklyn, NY, the teachers are also companions. They fly with these young minds, ready to think outside the realm of their understandings.
In Brooklyn, New York, every year more and more parents who learn about this unique approach to education, are eager to get their children into a Reggio-Emilia School. A school, where the child is a part of a rich and collaborative way of learning and where the child is seen as a part of the social network. Students who attend a school that is based on the Reggio Emilia philosophy, in my opinion are far ahead in how they approach the world around them.
The wider the range of possibilities we offer children, the more intense will be there motivations and the richer their experiences
Educators at a Reggio inspired school draw the ideas for the classroom projects from their student’s interests, ideas, and curiosity. They support their student’s journey of learning. They listen to the ideas of the young minds, and create a new challenge, a new activity for them. With every new activity, students discover a new insight.
About the Reggio Emilia Approach-
The Reggio Emilia Approach originated in the city of Reggio Emilia in Italy. Since its development in the 1940’s, this approach has been used worldwide. The approach fosters child development by encouraging them to explore and express through their communicative and cognitive languages. This approach believes in child’s own methods of learning.
At a Reggio Emilia School, the belief is that every student have hundreds of ways to express and understand the world. Schools that follow this approach use various media elements like music, art, movement, storytelling, dramatic play and construction as part of their daily tools which are incorporated into the learning experience. Various projects are based on various developmentally appropriate topics in order to foster a child’s learning and growth.