In Jewish tradition, we are encouraged to ask questions, continue to learn, and always strive to be our best selves. Reggio Emilia is an approach to learning that beautifully complements these values.
Through the practice of Reggio Emilia, teachers and children have more autonomy in what goes into what they are learning. Children are encouraged to ask questions, drive their instruction, and engage with learning activities in their own unique way. Teachers, in turn, spend less time "instructing" and more time listening to their students' needs and facilitating learning, growth, and connection both inside and outside of the classroom.
HISTORY OF REGGIO EMILIA
The Reggio Emilia approach was developed after World War II by Loris Malaguzzi and parents in the villages around Reggio Emilia, Italy, and derives its name from the city. Reggio Emilia is a student-centered approach to Early Childhood education where children learn by experience and have the ability to express themselves in a variety of ways. Reggio Emilia philosophers believe that children are capable learners who deserve respect, real-life experiences, authentic materials, and the allowance to tell their own stories while exploring and learning from the world around them.
THE LEGACY OF REGGIO EMILIA AT CJP
In 2018 members of the CJP leadership traveled to Reggio Emilia Italy to study this philosophy first hand. We have found many similarities in this philosophy and our values at CJP. At CJP we have endorsed many aspects of this philosophy and have been implementing into our classrooms Reggio Emilia guiding principles such as the environment as the third teacher, the use of open-ended materials, the power behind provocations, exploring natural materials, and most importantly, the belief that children are capable and competent learners.
A HAPPY AND ENGAGED SCHOOL FOR ALL
Since the beginning of our journey, we have noticed a positive change throughout our school. Teachers and children have more autonomy in what goes into what they are learning. Teachers and children are more proud of their learning environments including their materials and experiences. Teachers are talking less and listening more. Children are more curious, excited to be in the driving seat of their own learning experiences, and are more engaged and exploratory throughout the day.