This week has been Professional Development week for our educators. This entire summer our staff has been participating in a variety of opportunities for educational growth. Eight of us went to the Moreh L’Morim Conference in Detroit, our two Associate Directors went to Portland, OR for the Reggio Emilia Conference, and our teachers have been going to a variety of workshops throughout the city.
This week, our educators were able to immerse themselves in our new educational lens, the Reggio Emilia Approach. This fall we are excited to open our new Reggio Emilia inspired Valinsky Art Studio with Julie Lewinter as our Art Specialist. Reggio Emilia is an educational theory that begin in Italy after World War II. A textbook definition is as follows:
The Reggio Emilia Approach is an educational philosophy focused on preschool and primary education. It was started by Loris Malaguzzi, who was a teacher himself, and the parents of the villages around Reggio Emilia in Italy after World War II. The destruction from the war, parents believed, necessitated a new, quick approach to teaching their children. They felt that it is in the early years of development that children form who they are as individuals. This led to creation of a program based on the principles of respect, responsibility, and community through exploration and discovery in a supportive and enriching environment based on the interests of the children through a self-guided curriculum.
We are excited to work with the children this year as co-learners. During our professional development our educators were able to create some Reggio inspired Art themselves. Below, check out our teachers working on their projects and a few pictures of the new Art Studio!
See you tomorrow night for our open house and picnic beginning at 5:30 p.m. Looking forward to a great year!