The Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Education

Developed in the mid 20th century by Italian psychologist Loris Malaguzzi, this learning method encourages a self-guided curriculum that fosters exploration and discovery. Loris Malaguzzi was assisted by parents in the villages around Reggio Emilia Italy and named the educational philosophy in the region’s honor. Several key elements distinguish the Reggio Emilia approach, setting it apart from other early education pedagogies. Us at Piccoli Bambini Preschool employ them all.

Piccoli Bambini Preschool Curriculum

The approach we use in our program asks that our teachers pay close attention to the unique interests and development of each child, evolving a course of investigation tailored to their personal interests and curiosities. Our classroom activities and long-term projects created with the following principles in mind.

Learn by Doing: Piccoli Bambini Preschool uses the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Education. Since children learn with their feet, using their hands, and communicating their ideas in a number of ways. We encourage our students to communicate their ideas by making artwork out of natural materials found in the earth. Visual and tactile stimulation motivate deep engagement in our students with their surroundings, making for a rich and rewarding education.

Our Students Blossom at Piccoli Bambini Preschool: Much of Reggio Emilia learning style is done outdoors in nature. One need only look at YouTube videos of Italian schools to see children engaged in inspired activities such as making outdoor Ferris wheels for birds or wind machines out of brightly colored balloons. Our facility has a private outdoor area where children learn and play. Outdoor spaces are nature-based environments set up to act as another classroom that inspires children to explore and investigate.

Our Environment as the Third Teacher: Each classroom at Piccoli Bambini Preschool is full of what we call learning “provocations.” A child might see a bouquet of flowers next to an intentionally placed set of watercolor paints and a blank piece of paper. A small sign might read “What do you see?” encouraging the children to make a painting. These visually stimulating invitations are meant to create engaged students. Provocations prompt exploration; exploration stimulates the brain; stimulated brains evolve into inspired learners.

Collaboration & Interaction: The Reggio Emilia system’s very design invites children at Piccoli Bambini Preschool to collaborate in cooperation with one another and with the support of their teachers. Learning is rarely done in isolation, and the classroom environment is always alive and connected. As part of our curriculum, our students are involved in activities that promote social skills, healthy interactions, interpersonal skills which further supports their academic learning.

The Role of the Piccoli Bambini Preschool Teacher: Our teachers plays four roles. A co-constructor who guides, nurtures, and assists in problem-solving. A researcher who learns and observes. A documenter who listens, records and evaluates. A child advocate who takes on an active role in the community, and is a passionate social advocate for issues related to child learning.

The importance of Documentation: All teachers at Piccoli Bambini Preschool conscientiously document each child’s educational progression. When it comes to identifying specific strengths and challenge areas, this becomes an enormously necessary process. It is done through creative media such as video and photography, as well as conversation transcripts and learning stories.

Visual Arts, Music and Italian Classes as Part of our Everyday Curriculum: At Piccoli Bambini Preschool our students are offered a rich curriculum that seeks to elevate learning beyond a ‘typical’ classroom environment. We have created a balance between Reggio Emilia inspired learning activities and enrichment classes to expand your child’s mind, introducing them to foreign languages, sports, visual arts, and performing arts (music). Our enrichment class Instructors are carefully chosen from local licensed providers and experienced professional in each field, previously screened by FBI and the city’s Law Enforcement Agency.