The Reggio Emilia philosophy inspires our program to encourage children to explore, question, theorize, and draw conclusions in a rich and pleasing environment. Children learn through the processes of inquiry, investigation, and conclusion. Children can continue to refine their discoveries as they are nurtured and encouraged by the adults (parents, teachers, and community members) who facilitate their learning.
Key elements of the Reggio approach:
View of the Child: The child is seen as strong, capable, and resourceful. The child is social and able to express their interests and ideas, research information, and reflect on their experience and form conclusions.
Role of the Teacher: The adult’s role is provocateur, researcher, facilitator, and guide alongside the children.
Environment as the Third Teacher: The environment is inviting, inspiring, and accessible.
Negotiated Curriculum: The children engage in in-depth investigations that engage them in real-life contexts and integrate the acquisition and application of basic skills through inquiry. These studies are negotiated upon the children’s emerging interests.
Use of Symbolic Language: Children use a variety of means (drawing, language, music, dance, etc.) to express their thoughts, feelings and knowledge.
Documentation as Communication: Children’s thoughts, ideas, growth and construction of knowledge are reflected upon and documented as a form of communication with the community.
Parent as Partner: Parents are considered to be an essential component of the program. Parents play an active part of the children’s learning experience and, at the same time; help ensure the welfare of all children in the school.
Our goal is to learn about each child and the context of his or her learning. Authentic assessment engages and evaluates children on tasks that are personally meaningful to them, takes place in real life contexts, and is grounded in naturally occurring activities throughout the day. The process of observing, recording, and documenting what children do and how they do it is the basis for a variety of educational decisions that affect our teaching approaches as well as curriculum development and implementation.
Teachers undertake authentic, meaningful assessment by collecting work samples, checklists, anecdotal notes and photos of the children throughout the year. A child’s portfolio will tell the story of their effort, progress and achievements throughout their time at Mill Creek Early Childhood Program.
Our curriculum is inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education, which encourages young children and their teachers to explore, question, and discover in a stimulating environment. As early childhood educators, we know children learn best through active, engaged, meaningful play. Therefore, we firmly believe play is the children’s work.
Our Curriculum reflects these needs while fostering independence, empathy, cooperation, and creativity. In-depth explorations of a topic, which are motivated by the children’s interest, excitement and curiosity, allow the curriculum to be presented in a developmentally appropriate manner.