The Reggio Emilia approach to early years education focuses on a child’s potential, putting them in the driver’s seat and allowing them to learn from their environment
The Reggio Emilia approach recognises the endless potential of the child, which is stretched and challenged through the socialisation process occurring in a nursery setting. The encounter of different cultures makes the school environment the best place for a child to flourish, and our incredible setting provides the perfect learning environment, where the classroom itself is considered in this approach as an educator.
At Happy Hearts Nursery and Preschool, we implement elements of the Reggio Emilia philosophy, and in particular, its Project-Based approach, and we consider children and their families to be at the centre of our educational project. We foster the capacity of children to express their ideas in a variety of ways just as the Italian educator Loris Malaguzzi (1920-1994) and founder of the Reggio Emilia approach described in his work ‘The Hundred Languages of Children’. We recognise the importance of children growing and learning alongside each other and learning through their own uniqueness and differences.
The ‘Project-Base’ approach sees teaching as an interactive process, where the teachers are best described as facilitators who give children the opportunity to direct their own learning process, and guide them as they learn through hands-on experiences and first-hand observation. At Happy Hearts we recognise that all children naturally want to learn, and the incorporation of the Project-Based approach helps us to inspire curious minds by allowing the children to play a role in selecting the real-word topics they wish to explore and recognising that each child has their own set of interests, strengths and beliefs that make them unique.
The Project-Based approach rests on the assumption that just like society, education should also be democratic, and educating children with this approach helps them understand what it means to be in a fair and democratic society. Through their own differences, children learn from one another and grow as individuals while they work collaboratively on researching a topic, discussing ideas and deciding how they would like to move forward to extend what they already know. This supports children’s acquisition of social skills as the completion of the project requires the collaboration of children and teachers.