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ED354988 PS021008

 

Title: Reggio Emilia: Some Lessons for U.S. Educators. ERIC Digest.
Author(s): New, Rebecca S.
Author Affiliation: ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education, Urbana, IL.(BBB16656)
Pages: 3
Publication Date: 1993
Sponsoring Agency: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC. (EDD00036)
Contract No: RI88062012
Report No: EDO-PS-93-3
Available from: EDRS Price MF01/PC01 Plus Postage.
Language: English
Document Type: ERIC product (071); ERIC digests in full text (073)
Geographic Source: U.S.; Illinois
Journal Announcement: RIEJUL1993

An internationally acclaimed program that challenges American notions of appropriate early education is the municipal early childhood program in Reggio Emilia, Italy. The town's liberal financial support of child care and citizen membership in school committees indicate strong community support. Parents are involved in school policy discussions, child development concerns, and curriculum planning. The administration of the early childhood program consists of a head administrator, team leaders, and teachers. There is no hierarchical relationship among teachers. Teacher in-service education is provided through extensive staff development opportunities. The organization of the physical environment of the school is crucial to the program. Spaces are designed so that classrooms are integrated with the school and schools with the surrounding community. Class activities include projects that teachers work on with small groups of children. Project topics are chosen based on teacher observations of children's play, or teachers' or parents' academic curiosity. As they proceed in their investigation of a topic, children are encouraged to depict their understanding through drawing, sculpture, dramatic play, and writing. Several characteristics of the Reggio Emilia approach that challenge American conceptions of developmentally appropriate practice include teachers' beliefs in the importance of being confused as a contributor to learning and the importance of children's ability to negotiate in peer groups. (Contains nine references.) (BC)

Descriptors: *Class Activities; *Community Support; Educational Environment; Foreign Countries; Inservice Teacher Education; Parent Participation; *Physical Environment; *Preschool Education; *Program Administration; Program Descriptions; *Reggio Emilia Approach; *Symbolic Language; Teacher Student Relationship
Identifiers: ERIC Digests; *Italy (Reggio Emilia)