SchoolArts Magazine

AUG-SEP 2013

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 38 of 56

All Levels The Italian town of Reggio Emilia. Stepping Stones Lella Gandini W hat is so special about Reggio Emilia, a city of 140,000 inhabitants in northern Italy? The city-run educational system for young children originated there in schools started by parents; literally groups of parents built them with their own hands at the end of World War II. The first school was built with proceeds from the sale of a tank, some trucks, and a few horses left behind by the retreating German army. Such par36 August/September 2013 SchoolArts ticipation by parents has remained an essential part of education in that city. So what makes the Reggio approach so notable? The following paragraphs describe the unique approach to theory and practice in the Reggio Emilia school system. The Image of the Child All children have preparedness, potential, and curiosity; they have interest in relationships, in constructing their own learning, and in negotiating with everything the environment brings to them. Children should be considered active citizens with rights, and contributing members of their local community. Children's Relationships and Interactions within a System Education has to focus on each child, not considered in isolation, but seen in relation to the family, to other children, to their teachers, to the school environment, to the community, and

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